Dawg Night is known as Georgia's biggest recruiting event of the summer, and it's usually the venue for multiple commitments, often really big ones. This year's event drew as much blue chip talent as ever, but was fairly light on the actual pledges (though to be fair there are still several big time recruits still in town this morning, and one or more of them may make up their minds before leaving town).
The only public commitment to come out of yesterday's event came from south Florida speedster Shaq Wilson. Wilson worked out at the Mark Richt Camp last month. While other schools had offered Wilson as a wide receiver, Coach Pruitt apparently worked him in the defensive backfield and liked what he saw enough to extend an offer.
The Bulldog offer certainly wasn't Wilson's first. He also claims scholarship tenders from Arkansas, Louisville, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin among others. But it would be a stretch to say that he's a truly high profile recruit. Rather he is a guy with tons of athletic upside that a lot of big schools had been keeping an eye on without ever stepping up with an offer.
Wilson's junior highlights can be seen below:
Wilson's clearly got wheels. I don't think he has world class speed. But playing in a league full of guys with good speed he still clearly has some of the best acceleration on the field. What you may not be able to tell from the video however is his size. Wilson is listed at 6'3, 190 pounds by the various recruiting sites, good measurables for a receiver, huge for a corner.
As Doc Skraynj noted in the comments soon after the commitment, Wilson just looks like a safety. He's got long legs and above average arm length, with a body type that makes me think he could easily play closer to 205-210 pounds, plenty of weight for a rangy free safety, perhaps with a combination of speed and size to play the star position in nickel packages. He actually reminds me of a little thinner version of former Bulldog C.J. Byrd in terms of build.
One thing I really like about Wilson is how he high points the ball. Take a look at the plays beginning at the 1:40 and 1:51 mark. He catches the ball at the first available moment, going up high to get it rather than waiting for it to come to him, all without breaking stride. Combine that skill with his height and it's not hard to imagine Wilson winning the head-to-head battle for the ball.
Again, Wilson isn't a guy who likely comes in ready to play SEC football from day one. The highlights above don't show much regarding his ability to play the run or his coverage skills. But I did notice something interesting in both Wilson's film and in the film of fellow recent DB commit Deontai Williams: confidence. Both of these guys move around the field with purpose and they have energy. I don't know if that's a sign, but I know it's an interesting pattern. Until later . . .