Offensive line depth emerged as a major issue over the course of the 2017 season, and the Jackets just took another step toward addressing it. Lineman Zakk McKeehan made his official visit to Atlanta this past weekend, and on Tuesday, he announced he was decommitting from Louisiana-Monroe and committing to Tech.
The third offensive lineman in the class, McKeehan is rated a three-star recruit by 247Sports (0.8111) and a two-star recruit by Rivals (5.4). Along with Louisiana-Monroe, he had offers from Ball State and a handful of FCS schools, according to Rivals.
McKeehan is from St. Francisville, La., just north of Baton Rouge, and he helped to lead West Feliciana HS to its first-ever Class 3A state title earlier this month. If he ends up signing with Tech, it will mark the fourth straight year that the Jackets have brought in at least one player from Louisiana (following Christian Campbell in 2015, Jahaziel Lee in 2016, and the Swilling brothers in 2017).
McKeehan lines up at right guard for his HS team, and he’s effective at driving opposing defenders back. He also shows good speed when moving to the second level to block, which is key for a lineman in Tech’s offense. As is often the case for OL prospects, he’ll need to work on getting his pad level down, as he seems to engage high and rely on his strength to win at the line of scrimmage. Notably, he also plays defensive tackle, and his defensive film is arguably even more impressive. That said, it’s become more and more common for Paul Johnson and his staff to bring in capable defensive line prospects to play on the offensive line.
Given his size and his experience on the interior line on both sides of the ball, McKeehan likely projects as a guard at the collegiate level. He’ll almost certainly need to redshirt, but he could be a useful contributor up front in time.
McKeehan is the 18th player in the 2018 class, which now looks like this:
Georgia Tech 2018 Recruiting Class
|OL||Harrison Jump||6-5||257||Athens, GA||5.4||0.8256||6/5/17|
|DB||Charlie Thomas||6-2||190||Thomasville, GA||5.6||0.8681||6/5/17|
|WR||PJ Harris||6-3||207||Newnan, GA||5.5||0.8276||6/5/17|
|DT||T.K. Chimedza||6-2||300||Bradenton, FL||5.6||0.8743||6/21/17|
|ATH||Tijai Whatley||6-2||180||Rome, GA||5.5||0.8629||6/22/17|
|LB||JaQuez Jackson||6-1||216||Fort Valley, GA||5.6||0.8464||6/22/17|
|RB||Dontae Smith||5-9||173||Columbia, TN||5.4||0.854||6/22/17|
|DT||Austin Smith||6-3||275||Mcdonough, GA||5.5||0.8452||6/23/17|
|ATH||Zamari Walton||6-1||165||Melbourne, FL||5.5||0.846||7/4/17|
|DB||Jaylon King||6-0||170||Nashville, TN||5.8||0.8957||7/27/17|
|OL||Michael Maye||6-3||290||Hoover, AL||5.5||0.831||7/27/17|
|DE||Luke Johns||6-5||245||Dalton, GA||5.5||0.831||7/28/17|
|LB||Justice Dingle||6-2||243||Bowling Green, KY||5.8||0.877||8/1/2017|
|CB||Juanyeh Thomas||6-2||204||Niceville, FL||5.5||0.8351||8/8/2017|
|WR||Malachi Carter||6-2||180||Lawrenceville, GA||5.5||0.8514||9/17/2017|
|RB||C'Bo Flemister||6-0||192||Zebulon, GA||5.4||0.7954||12/4/2017|
|OL||Zakk McKeehan||6-4||290||St. Francisville, LA||5.4||0.8111||12/19/17|