March 5, 2012

Lightning strikes twice

Goose Creek (Goose Creek, S.C.) wide receiver Tramel Terry is proof that lightning can strike twice for the same school.

After being are furious recruitment that came down to Clemson, South Carolina, and Georgia, Terry decided to commit to the Bulldogs for the second time in nine months.

This time, however, the Palmetto State star is 100 percent sure he is doing the right thing.

"I've committed to Georgia, and it is where I want to be," said Terry. "I went down there for Dawg Night last summer, and I got wide-eyed. I committed there, but I realized that I kind of needed to back away, and figure some things out. I didn't want to say I was committed unless I was sure. Some people say it was because of in-state pressure, but that wasn't the case. It was because I had to figure out some things with my major, and I'm sure I'm doing the right thing now."

Terry's commitment comes on the heels of two weekends where he made two consecutive visits to Athens.

One of those visits was for a Junior Day, and the other was for UGA's Very Important Dawg (VID) even.

According to Terry, getting to know recruits in this 2013 class played a large role in his decision.

"It was great being in Athens with my boys," he said. "Tray Matthews, Shaq (Wiggins), and Derrick Henry are guys that I have gotten to know. I really can't wait to get down to Athens and play with my boys."

The Bulldogs may have won the fierce battle for one of, if not the, top player in the state of South Carolina for 2013, but Terry is quick to point out that it wasn't a cut and dry decision.

"Coach Tony Elliot at Clemson has been like a father-figure to me," he said. "He recruited me hard and I got to know him very well. We could talk about almost anything. Then with South Carolina, I have just been there so many times and know so many guys. I have so much respect for that program, but I just never really felt like they were the place for me. They are both great places though."

Terry admits that at the beginning of his recruitment, he would have a hard time imagining forming closer relationship than he did with the coaches a South Carolina and Clemson.

It was, however, the relationships that he built with a few members of UGA's coaching staff that made the difference.

"Coach (John) Lilly, Coach (Tony) Ball, and Coach (Mark) Richt were all just so great," he said. "Coach Richt and Coach Ball were two of the most genuine people I have ever met, and they did such a great job with me and meeting my family. I brought 13 members of my family down to meet the Georgia staff and it was great."

The 130th ranked player in the country by is listed as a wide receiver, but he knows his future could be on the other side of the ball.

In departing senior cornerback Brandon Boykin, Georgia was able to give Terry an example of how he could be a threat for the Bulldogs in multiple ways.

"They told me they want to use me like Brandon Boykin," he said. "I'm a little taller, but I am similar athletically. I have only played offense here at Goose Creek really, so that is where I am most comfortable. I know that my future is probably on defense and that is the best way for me to get to the next level, so I am cool with that."

After strongly considering ending his recruitment multiple times over the last few weeks, he got all the confirmation he needed from his family in their trip to UGA this past weekend.

"Up until last weekend, I tried to handle it all myself," said Terry. "I knew that I was going to be the one who had to go to the school, so I wanted to handle it on my own. I decided to bring my mom down with me because she knows me best, and she knows how to read people. So my family came down with me, and they loved it."

Now that Terry's recruitment has come to an end, he feels that he owes a great deal of gratitude to a former teammate and his current teammates for helping him be successful on the field.

"My whole recruitment all really started with (South Carolina offensive tackle) Brandon Shell," said Terry. "When schools were coming to see him, that is when they saw me, so I owe so much to him. I also know that my current teammates have been there for me and I have been there for them. That is what teammates due. Guys like (linebacker) Gerald Turner, who is one of the best linebackers in the country, and (linebacker) Jalen Stevens. He is a guy that is under the radar too, and just a great player. Also (defensive tackle) Mike Myers and DeShawn Evans are big-time too. There is also Caleb Kinlaw, who I think will be Mr. Football in South Carolina next year. He had, I think, over 1,800 yards last year as a sophomore. All those guys deserve so much exposure because they are great players."

Goose Creek, who will be undeniably loaded again in 2012, won the South Carolina state championship in 2011 with a 14-1 record under Head Coach Chuck Ready and Terry did his part with 868 yards receiving, 856 yards rushing and 20 total touchdowns while also serving as a dangerous kick returner.

According to the Rivals250 prospect, they'll be looking to do more of the same in in his senior season.

"My main goal is to take some of the younger guys under my wing this year and help them become better," he said. "We want to win another championship and be the best again."

As for his commitment to Georgia, Terry has a message for Georgia fans.

"Man, I'm just excited," he said. "I'm excited to be a Bulldog."

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