Posted by Chip Patterson
Georgia Tech head coach Paul Johnson has never been afraid to speak his mind, and he certainly has plenty to say when it comes to oversigning in recruiting.
Johnson has openly criticized the practice over oversigning in the past, but chose to address the issue directly in a news conference on Friday. The practice has been a local topic of conversation after Alabama pulled their 2012 offer from North Atlanta High running back Justin Taylor. Taylor, one of the top running backs in the state, was offered a grayshirt from the Crimson Tide and promised a spot in the 2013 class.
“That’s like (if) we go out there, we’ve got 15 commitments and we just keep recruiting over the top of them,” Johnson said. “Now, people do that, but not many. And then they just come back and they tell ‘em, ‘Hey, sorry, you’ll have to come next year. You’ll have to come in the spring. We found somebody better than you. We oversigned.’ That’s wrong. And it’s wrong on both sides. It’s just wrong.”
Taylor is reportedly considering his options, and may take head coach Nick Saban's offer to join the program in 2013. The running back missed his senior season with a knee injury, and could benefit from the extended rehab. In addition to criticizing programs, Johnson has publicly expressed discontent with prospects who treat the verbal commitment as a flexible agreement.
Recruiting has always been a hot button topic for Paul Johnson, especially at Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets must compete with the top SEC schools in the nation for in-state recruits, while still maintaining the school's academic standards. When other schools like Alabama are using oversigning to lock up the best local recruits, it makes the job for Johnson's staff even more difficult as they fight the uphill battle to assemble the strongest class possible.
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