Just three weeks ago, the outlook for Georgia Southern’s 2017 recruiting class was bleak. The Eagles had not locked down more than one three-star recruit, and the class looked to be as much of a disaster as the 2016 season was.
But in the last three weeks, Tyson Summers and his coordinators have hit the recruiting trail incredibly hard and locked down a solid signing class. While it may not look as good on paper as the ‘16 class did, it certainly looks as if the team is headed in the right direction from a recruiting standpoint.
Courtesy of 247 Sports*:
Georgia Southern 2017 Signing Class
|Kenton Tucker||DE||3 Star||6'4"||258|
|Jaden Garrett||DB||3 Star||5'11"||175|
|Chris Harris Jr.||LB||3 Star||6'1"||230|
|Tre Allen||LB||3 Star||6'0"||217|
|Tomarcio Reese||LB||3 Star (JuCo)||6'0"||215|
|Josh Johnson||DE||3 Star||6'5"||240|
|Grant Walker||RB||3 Star||6'1"||197|
|Raymond Johnson||DE||3 Star||6'4"||235|
|Shaquan Griffin||DE||2 Star||6'3"||265|
|John Wesley Kennedy III||RB||3 Star||5'10"||181|
|Brian Miller||DT||3 Star||6'4"||266|
|Demetrice Lofton||DE||3 Star||6'4"||215|
|Melton Brown||DE||2 Star||6'3"||250|
|Kado Brown||QB||2 Star (JuCo)||6'0"||180|
|Jaalon Frazier||QB||2 Star||6'3"||190|
|Logan Wright||RB||2 Star||6'1"||215|
|Matthew Laroche||RB||2 Star||5'10"||170|
|Garbentz Josue||ATH||2 Star||6'1"||185|
|Jarrod Leeds||OG||2 Star||6'5"||270|
|Kenderick Duncan||DB||2 Star||6'3"||190|
|Caleb Kelly||OG||2 Star||6'2"||285|
|Ted Field||OT||2 Star||6'5"||285|
A couple of things immediately jump out at you when you look at this class. Number one is the number of defensive lineman. 7 of the 22 signees are listed as lineman on defense.
Georgia Southern had some of the worst pass rushing numbers in the country last season ranking 124th in the FBS in sacks with 11. That number has to go up if Summers and company don’t want the Eagles playing from behind all year.
Another thing that stands out number of quarterbacks and running backs that committed late. Three weeks ago, names like John Wesley Kennedy III and Kado Brown were not associated with Southern, but new offensive coordinator Bryan Cook has done a good job getting playmakers to fit into this offensive scheme.
GS locked down two dual threat QB’s in Brown and Jaalon Frazier, and four running backs, led by Kennedy. This spring should be an open audition at quarterback and for that coveted third tailback spot with Matt Breida gone. The rushing numbers for last year were way down from the previous two years, and Cook will look to get it back to one of the best in the nation come September.
This team underachieved last year and lost 24 seniors to graduation. While 2017 may be a growing year for the Eagles with new faces on both sides of the ball, it could be a big step forward for the program after a rough 2016 campaign.
*Author’s Note: Some of the position listings from 247 are incorrectly reported. For example, Grant Walker is listed as a safety on 247, while the GS page for Scout has him correctly listed as a running back. Therefore, some of the positions are altered for this table.