Georgia Elite Classic primed for enormous fifth year

photo credit courtesy of Dawgnation

When the Georgia Elite Classic launched five years ago, it set out on a mission to showcase the same combination of on-the-field and off-the-field talent that draws college coaches from around the country to recruit from the state of Georgia each year. The inaugural Classic featured a star-studded junior game and built a foundation that encouraged continuous growth in the years since. A sophomore game was added for the first time in 2015, and last year’s event put three different recruiting classes on display by adding a senior game for the first time. This year will give the state’s top freshmen a chance to join the spotlight, and with more games, prospects, coaches and recruiting experts coming together than ever before, the 2017 Georgia Elite Classic is primed for a historic five-year anniversary celebration.

The three-day event begins on Dec. 26 when more than 400 prospects, representing over 170 different Georgia high schools, will check in and get ready for the first of their three practices before game day. Team bonding activities like a fun-filled night at Stars and Strikes on Dec. 27 and accommodations provided at the Galleria Marriott across from SunTrust Park will give players time to connect off the field. The first of the four games scheduled for Dec. 28 at McEachern’s Cantrell Stadium will kick off at 10 a.m. with the freshmen and will conclude with the seniors at 5:30 p.m.

In addition to introducing the first-ever four-game lineup, new leadership was added to the Georgia Elite Classic team this past year. I.J. Rosenberg, the president of Score Atlanta, one of the organizers of the Corky Kell Classic and creator of the Georgia Elite Classic, brought on veteran coaches Tripp Allen of Brookwood and Jeff Carlberg of North Gwinnett to lead the selection process with guidance from recruiting expert Rusty Mansell of 247Sports. With 54 years of combined coaching experience in Georgia high school football between them, Allen (26 years) and Carlberg (28) as well as the eight head coaches in this year’s four games are some of the state’s best.

Walton’s Daniel Brunner and North Gwinnett’s Bill Stewart will coach the senior games, while North Cobb’s Shane Queen and Stockbridge’s Kevin Whitley will lead the junior game. Jackson’s Dary Myricks and Milton’s Adam Clack will coach the sophomores while Fitzgerald’s Tucker Pruitt and Villa Rica’s Rico Zachery coach the freshmen.

Five-star wide receivers and UGA commits Dominick Blaylock (Walton) and Jadon Haselwood (Cedar Grove), the only two U.S. Army All-Americans in Georgia right now for the 2019 class. headline the junior game while Norcross kicker Jake Camarda, also going to play for the Bulldogs and one of the top high school kickers in the nation, will play in the senior game. The sophomore game will have defensive end Arik Gilbert from Marietta, who has a chance to be the top prospect nationally in the 2020 class and when asked about the freshmen game, Mansell said, “Both teams will be filled with a ridiculous number of players who will play in both the SEC and ACC.’’

Tickets can purchased online for $8 HERE and will be available for $10 at the gates on game day. All games will be streamed on the NFHS Network. For more information. Go to GeorgiaEliteClassic.com.

2017 GEORGIA ELITE CLASSIC SCHEDULE

Thursday, Dec. 28

Freshmen Game 10 a.m.

Sophomore Game 12:30 p.m.

Junior Game 3 p.m.

Senior Game 5:30 p.m.

Georgia Elite Classic picks head coaches for December All-Star showdowns at McEachern

The Georgia Elite Classic locked down its head coaches for the four games on Dec. 28 at McEachern High School. The Senior Game will be coached by Daniel Brunner from Walton and Bill Stewart from North Gwinnett. The Bulldogs have clinched Region 6 in Class AAAAAAA while the Raiders are undefeated at 9-0 and can lock down Region 4 in Class AAAAAAA with a win Friday night over Woodstock. Brunner and Stewart, both in their first year as head coaches at their respective schools, opened the season against each other at the Metro PCS Corky Kell Classic with Walton winning 31-28 in a game that could have gone either way. Both teams have been undefeated since their meeting at Georgia State Stadium. The Junior Game will be led by Shane McQueen of North Cobb and Stockbridge’s Kevin Whitley. The Tigers are undefeated at 9-0 and have won their fourth straight region title while the Warriors are 5-4 and still have a shot at the playoffs. The Sophomore Game will be coached by Jackson’s Dary Myricks and Adam Clack from Milton. The Eagles will make the Class AAAAAAA playoffs and are 7-2 while the Red Devils clinched a spot in the Class AAA playoffs. The freshman game will feature Tucker Pruitt from Fitzgerald and Villa Rica’s Rico Zachery. In Class AAAAA, the Wildcats finished their season at 5-5 in one of the toughest regions in the state while the Purple Hurricanes are still fighting for a playoff spot and region title at Class AA. To be considered for the games, click here. Another way to get into the games is to sign up the Elite Showcase, which will be held Dec. 17 at McEachern High School. A group of players form the Showcase will be chosen to play in the games. To sign up for the Showcase, click here. For more info on the Georgia Elite Classic, go to GeorgiaEliteClassic.com or call Graham David (gdavid@scoreatl.com) at Score Atlanta at 404-256-1572 or Rusty Mansel of 247Sports at rustymansell@yahoo.com.

Elite Classic gets nation’s No. 1 QB from 2021

Buford quarterback Aaron McLaughlin has committed to play in the Freshman Game in the Georgia Elite Classic on Dec. 28 at McEachern High School. Already starting as a freshman for a 3-1 Buford team ranked No. 2 in Class AAAAA, McLaughlin stands 6 feet, 5 inches and weighs 220 pounds and is considered by most recruiting services to be the top pro-style QB in the class of 2021. In four games, including his high school debut in the Metro PCS Corky Kell Classic, he has completed 45 of 87 passes for 497 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions. He has two rushing touchdowns. Joining McLaughlin for the Freshman Game will be Brookwood quarterback Caleb Ellard and teammates Zach Dyer and Caleb Ellard, both receivers. Brookwood will send tackle Sean Hill and running back Eli Knight for the Sophomore Game and tight end/linebacker Ennio Zambino, linebacker Anthony Gorney and quarterback Justin Fombie for the Junior Game. Click here if you would like to be considered for the four games, which will include a senior matchup. The Georgia Elite Classic will be based at McEachern, while the players will stay two nights at the Atlanta Marriott Northwest, across from the Braves’ SunTrust Park.

 

Photo courtesy of 247Sports

5-star Blaylock commits to playing in Georgia Elite Classic

Three of the top Junior players in the state have committed to play in December’s Georgia Elite Classic, including one who will wear a Georgia Bulldogs jersey in 2019 and two with multiple major college offers.  Walton receiver Dominick Blaylock and North Gwinnett defensive backs D.J. Turner II and Warren Burrell will play in the Elite Junior game on Dec. 28 at McEachern High School, which will also include an eighth-grade B2C All-Star game and matchups for freshmen, sophomores and seniors. Blaylock has committed to play for head coach Kirby Smart and the Bulldogs while Turner and Burrell both have an offer from Nick Saban and the University of Alabama. Also, quarterbacks Jake Smith from Blessed Trinity and Austin Kirksey from Walton have confirmed they will participate in the Junior Game as well as Walton running back Malik Adams and teammate Luke Payne, one of the top long snapping prospects in the country. Brookwood starting center Aidan Perkins will be in the Sophomore game and linebacker/running back James Wood from Jeff Davis High has said he will play in the Freshman game. Also, the Classic is excited to announce its first five head coaches for the games, which include Tucker Pruitt (Fitzgerald), Rico Zackery (Villa Rica), Adam Clack (Milton), Daniel Brunner (Walton) and Kevin Whitley (Stockbridge). A committee of coaches is picking the players for this year’s games and the Elite executive group running the event will include longtime coaches Tripp Allen from Brookwood and Jeff Carlberg from North Gwinnett. The committee is also getting strong direction from recruiting expert Rusty Mansell of 247 Sports. Click Here if you would like to be considered for the game.

GEORGIA ELITE CLASSIC INTRODUCES FRESHMAN GAME

The Georgia Elite Classic will celebrate its fifth year this December with the addition of a freshman All-Star Game at McEachern High School on Dec. 28. The games, created by the Corky Kell leadership team of Dave Hunter and I.J. Rosenberg, have become one of the top high school December All-Star events in the county and are always well-attended as well as receiving a lot of attention from recruiting services and college programs and coaches. There will be a total of five games at McEachern beginning with an B2C Eighth Grade All-Stars showdown at 9 a.m., followed the Freshman All-Stars at 11 a.m., the Sophomore All-Stars at 1:30 a.m., the Junior All-Stars at 4:15 p.m. and the Senior All-Stars will finish off the day with a 7 p.m. kickoff.  There will be more than 400 players participating and all high school players in the state of Georgia are eligible to make the teams and can register to be considered by CLICKING HERE. A committee of coaches will begin picking the players in mid-October and send out invites. The game includes staying for two nights at the Marriott Northwest across from the new Atlanta Braves ballpark as well as all meals, a game jersey, a bag of swag, three practices and a night out at Stars & Strikes with all the teams. The information for the games can be found at GeorgiaEliteClassic.com and again you can register to be considered by CLICKING HERE.

Georgia Elite Classic sets 2017 dates

The Georgia Elite Classic is excited to announce its dates for the 2017 games to be played at McEachern High School. The Classic will be going into its fifth season and the three-day event will be held Dec. 26-28. There also will be a freshman game this season in addition to sophomore, junior and senior games and just as the Classic did in 2016, gameday on Dec. 28 will open with a B2C eighth-grade All-Star game.
In the upcoming weeks, the Classic will also announce its new recruiting partner, expected to be one of the top recruiting services in the country as well as dates for combine tryouts which will be held throughout Georgia during the spring.
In addition, the Classic will soon announce its plans for 2018 when Super Bowl LIII comes to town in February of 2019. The Classic plans to play its games during Super Bowl week as well as bringing in an All-Star team from another state.
The Georgia Elite Classic is an event run under direction of Score Atlanta which also handles the Metro PCS Corky Kell Classic and Signing Day Frenzy among other events. Last December, more than 320 football players and 64 coaches from around the state participated in the Georgia Elite Classic in four games at McEachern.
For more information, go to EliteJRClassic.com or call 404-246-7819.