Trenton Thompson, a DT from Albany and the nation's #1 prospect in the class of 2015 (per Rivals), visited Georgia Tech on Wednesday with his high school coach. We all know how these things tend to go: state of Georgia has one of the nation's top prospects, he visits with his coach to be polite, says a couple of nice things about the visit, and then never even really considers returning when coaches from Alabama, Auburn, Florida State, and uga start calling. Really, it's a story as old as time itself, and every time Tech fans groan to themselves at the perceived shortsightedness of these high school players.
This time was a little different though.
Thompson and his coach showed up to campus on Wednesday expecting to be the next in that long line of prospects who are interested enough to be polite. However, per Michael Carvell at the AJC, Thompson walked away with a little more interest than he was expecting. There are two quotes there I want to bring up and discuss. First, Thompson is unique from the top prospects of the past in the sense that he has more appreciation for the bigger picture.
"It’s an engineering school, but if I do go to school there, I will probably study Business. They’ve got connections to AT&T, Coca-Cola and a lot of big businesses in Atlanta. I had a good view of downtown from the campus. And in each one of those big buildings, there’s a Georgia Tech graduate up in there making millions."
--Trenton Thompson, #1 Player in Rivals Class of 2015
You know what, we might not land Thompson in the end, but that the staff was able to really get across to him and impress upon him the program's biggest selling point (and why he should care about it) is good enough for me. This is a guy that they were able to communicate the bigger picture to, which is the only way that we'll ever have a fighting chance at top-tier recruits such as Thompson.
"We got to see the campus for the first time," Jones said. "It was a lot different from seeing it while passing by it on I-75. So we got to see what Georgia Tech was all about. We thought it was a smaller campus. I didn’t realize they had more than 400 acres. I didn’t realize it was that big. Trenton’s eyes were opened to some things, and he now has a different perspective of Georgia Tech."
--Octavia Jones, Thompson's HS Coach
The simple gesture of inviting a recruit to come by campus ended up in him figuring out that the landscape of Georgia Tech is very different from that of Georgia State. He learned that this isn't a school to be looked over as any other school situated in the middle of a big city -- it's as much of a college campus as anywhere else, and somewhere he can have as great an experience as he could at any other school.
Folks, I'd recommend you don't get your hopes up. The odds of us winning the recruiting battle for Trenton Thompson, even though he said he would have us in his top 7, are not great. But you should know that this staff is working their tails off on the recruiting trails, and that they're preaching the message you and I want preached. (Whether or not it's received and acknowledged by the recruit is another issue, but that's not really something we can control.) Here's to hoping our staff's recruiting efforts and improvements really start to pay off in a big way.
What are your thoughts on Thompson? Do we have a chance at pulling the upset? Are we kidding ourselves right now?