The recent coaching turnover in Athens, Ga., has caused Jaleel Laguins to consider all of his options moving forward.
The four-star linebacker, who committed to UGA in August, has yet to hear from Kirby Smart, and one of his lead recruiters, Jeremy Pruitt, is now Alabama’s defensive chief, leaving Laguins in somewhat of a standstill.
“Right now, as I’m speaking, I am committed to Georgia,” Laguins told SEC Country. “I have to honor that commitment. But I do have to keep my eyes open at the same time.”
Though he remains committed to the Bulldogs, Laguins tells SEC Country schools such as Tennessee, Alabama, LSU and Florida have recruited him heavily in recent weeks. Gators defensive coordinator Geoff Collins is one of several coaches who has contacted Laguins since Mark Richt’s departure.
“Me and Coach Collins,” Laguins said laughing, “We crack up all the time. Collins is a character. I like him.”
Evidently, Laguins likes him enough that he’s penciled in an official visit to Gainesville, Fla., on Jan. 15, just two days following the conclusion of the NCAA recruiting dead period. It is one of three visits he has planned later this month.
Laguins says Collins has pitched the idea of playing early considering Florida’s lack of depth at the linebacker position. Currently, Florida has only secured three verbal commitments at the position, including one from four-star linebacker David Reese, who has enrolled early.
The possibility of seeing the field early plays an important role in his decision.
“It weighs on you, especially if you want to play early,” Laguins said. “That’s one of your main decisions right there. What school can I play the earliest at?”
The coming weeks and his scheduled official visits will likely influence Laguins’ decision to either remain committed to UGA or venture elsewhere.
What would it take for him to reconsider his commitment?
“If I’m just not comfortable there,” Laguins said. “Nothing against the coaching staff, nothing against Kirby or anybody. If I’m just not 100 percent comfortable at Georgia, I feel like them as a coaching staff would want me to move on, too. You don’t want to be a burden on someone, you know?”