The Georgia Bulldogs may have the best chance to flip 4-star defensive end Davin Bellamy away from his commitment to the Florida State Seminoles.
Bellamy has been committed to Florida State since August, but recent changes in the coaching personnel at Georgia and Florida State could put the Bulldogs back on his radar.
For all intents and purposes, he seems to be a recruit who takes his personal connection with coaches very seriously, and the same could be said for the overall feel and vibe he's getting from a program.
According to his quotes via a report from Kipp Adams of ESPN.com, Bellamy had questions about new defensive ends coach Sal Sunseri, who hadn't made an offer to Bellamy when he (Sunseri) was the defensive coordinator at Tennessee.
FSU losing now former assistant Dameyune Craig to Auburn also seems to be a negative point with Bellamy, while conversely, Rodney Garney leaving Georgia seems to be a positive for the Bulldogs in Bellamy's eyes, all according to these quotes via Kipp Adams:
“When Coach Craig left, it opened the door for Georgia again,” Bellamy said. “Finding out (Rodney) Garner left played a big factor in me reaching out to UGA. I love everything about Georgia except for how he recruited me. My relationship between the coaches at Georgia and FSU are now kind of even. The only relationship I built with coaches at FSU was with Coach Craig, Coach (D.J.) Eliot and somewhat with Jimbo (Fisher).”
Bellamy goes on to explain his newfound interest in Georgia, via Adams' report:
“From a recruiting standpoint, my relationship with Georgia was kind of tarnished when Garner invited me down to campus and then no one was there,” Bellamy said.“It made me feel unimportant and it was a waste of time and gas for my coach.”
Garner’s departure put the Bulldogs back on the radar from Bellamy, who admits his fondness for the defensive coordinator at Georgia remains very strong.
“Once Garner left, that kind of opened the door for them because me and my coaches love Coach (Todd) Grantham,” Bellamy said. “I could tell I was not a priority with Garner, but me and my coach love Grantham. Coach Grantham had a presentation on my visit during the summer that I have yet to see another college match. It showed me he took a lot of time to break down my film and see what I could do best in his scheme.
Obviously this change in personnel has worked out in Georgia's favor, at least in regards to Bellamy's recruitment, and the 4-star defensive end made that very clear in Adams' report.
He went on to say that Georgia's chances are "very high" and that he had always been a "Georgia fan at heart." Adams also reports that Bellamy will officially visit Georgia instead of Virginia Tech on January 25th.
This is quite a turnaround, and at least from this report, it seems as if Bellamy is extremely excited in the potential Georgia has to offer.
The Bulldogs boast one of the premier programs in the SEC, so that's a huge check in the positives column, and Bellamy is from Atlanta, GA. That's a big "home-state advantage" for the Bulldogs.
At 6'5'', 235 pounds, Bellamy doesn't have the ideal size to play defensive end in a 3-4 scheme, but if coach Grantham can convince him that a transition to outside linebacker would allow him to be productive while keeping his size and agility, this could end up being a positive move for both programs.
Right now, the best thing Georgia can do is make sure that Bellamy knows that he's a big-time target for them. The Bulldogs can pitch him on staying in-state, playing for a major contender in the SEC and potentially having a chance at competing for a national championship or two at Georgia.
Remember, the Bulldogs were a win over Alabama away form playing in the 2013 BCS National Championship, and with the way that Mark Richt and his staff are recruiting, this is a program that's knocking on the door of serious contention.
Jimbo Fisher is also an excellent recruiter at Florida State, but the SEC factor really gives the Bulldogs quite a trump card in this instance. That plus the "home-state advantage" gives Georgia a great pitch.
Factor in the staff turnover with both programs and the apparent edge that gives the Bulldogs with Bellamy, and it looks like Georgia is in prime position to get a very important flip.