Kirby Smart and Matt Luke added another key piece to the Great Wall of Georgia as Tate Ratledge signed with the Dawgs this morning. The Darlington School product from Rome was thought to be wavering after Sam Pittman’s hiring at Arkansas, but the Kirby Kopter went to Rome last week and the Head Dawg worked his magic.
Ratledge’s announcement wasn’t suspenseful, as he announced on Sunday that he was sticking to the pledge he originally made in May.
Tate certainly has good taste in company.
Ratledge is the type of prospect that every team in America wants, and Georgia had to hold off a lot of last minute competition to sign him. Alabama and Tennessee checked in with the coveted tackle, and Clemson tried to convince him to hold off on signing until February so he could take some more visits.
The 6’6” Ratledge fills out his prototypical left tackle frame at 322 pounds. He has elite footwork, quickness and balance. The Rome native probably gets some of his comfort in the wash and excellent bend from his time spent playing tight-end earlier in his career. Ratledge is an athlete in every sense of the word, having played on both sides of the line throughout his career, and contributing on the basketball team at The Darlington School.
Ratledge is the son of a football and wrestling coach, and plays like one, carrying out blocks all the way through the whistle. He is the #3 OT in the country, #5 player in Georgia and the #36 player in the nation according to the 247 Sports Composite.
If he can adjust quickly from small school ball to the SEC, Ratledge could be in the rotation on the line as soon as next year.