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Looking Ahead - 2024 Running Backs, Who Do We Want?

Jason Brassell

The University of Georgia is RB-U. That's the statement. That's it. With the storied history of running backs that came through UGA, one would think that the Dawgs could pull any running back in the country that they want. That simply has not been the case in 2023. Alabama also has a big history of star running backs, so it isn't s surprise when a player chooses the Crimson Tide. Let's be honest, they're in a dynasty right now, so we shouldn't be shocked when someone like five star running back Richard Young chooses to play for Nick Saban. The problem comes when a UGA legacy running back like Justice Haynes also chooses the Crimson Tide in the same year.

Which makes the 2024 class all the more important. According to the 247sports composite rankings, only two of the top 20 running backs in the 2024 class are committed. Neither of those two have been targeted by Georgia. The top ranked back in the nation is Jerrick Gibson, who is also a top UGA target. The 5'10 195 pound five star played his sophomore year in Georgia and is now at IMG Academy. He only played in seven games last season, rushing for 626 yards and four touchdowns. Gibson is very high on the Dawgs and it wouldn't be a huge surprise is UGA is his leader behind the scenes. He took trips to Auburn, Miami, Tennessee this summer. He has also been in Athens at least a couple of times this year, including at least once this summer.

After playing his freshman season in Gainesville, Florida you'd think the Gators would be a big challeger in his recruitment. They just haven't been mentioned as much lately, possibly due to coaching staff changes. Two teams that are currently high on his list are Tennessee and Texas. The fast paced offense at Tennessee may help the Vols chances, while the Arch Manning effect is keeping the Longhorns in the mix. With quite a ways to go, Dell McGee will have to continue to fight to get Gibson in the red and black.

Stacy Gage is ranked right below Gibson as the #2 running back in the nation. He's also spent some time at IMG, but has transferred to play his junior year back home at Wharton High in Tampa, Florida. Gisson is essentially taking his spot at IMG this season. Gage is a prospect who was mentioned early on with the Dawgs, but he's seemed to have a pretty quiet recruitment since. The last time Gage visited UGA that I know of was in March. Oklahoma looks to be the team to beat early on, with Ohio State and Alabama right up there with the Sooners. If Georgia wants to get back in this recruitment, we'll need to push harder.

One running back who UGA has been gaining A LOT of steam with lately is Tovani Mizell. The Dawgs offered the 6'1 195 pound four star prospect in May and have been gaining momentum ever since. He was in Athens the last weekend in July before the dead period and impressed the Georgia coaching staff. Look for the Dawgs to keep the heat on full blast in this recruitment as we try to hold off teams like Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas A&M, and Southern Cal. Just like Gibson, it wouldn't be a surprise at all if UGA leads behind the scenes for Mizell. There is also a long way to go until 2024 national signing day. Dream scenario right now for me would be the Dawgs snagging both of these top 5 RB prospects.

Whether Georgia ends up snagging a back in the 2023 class or not, look for the Dawgs to take two in 2024. Anthony Carrie is another top 5 RB that the Dawgs have offered.

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Gibson is a great kid. Sociable and grinds. Love to add him to RBU as the premier prospect.

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