South: Two Elite DLs Off the Board
Chad Thomas
Chad Thomas
National Recruiting Analyst
Posted Jul 22, 2013
Chad Simmons


Two of the top defensive linemen out of the southeast took their names off the board Saturday. A top defensive end committed to Miami and a top defensive tackle committed to Georgia...

Chad Thomas is the No. 7 defensive end in the country and Lamont Gaillard is the No. 3 defensive tackle. Both put an end to their recruitment over the weekend.

Thomas camped at Alabama about a week ago and he left with a scholarship offer from the Crimson Tide. He then went to Tallahassee, Fla. to camp at Florida State where he drew a lot of attention from the Seminole coaches.

Not many, if any saw his commitment to Miami coming 24 hours after he left FSU.

At one time Thomas, a star out of Miami (Fla.) Booker T. Washington planned to ride his recruitment out until 2014, but he did tell Scout on Friday that he could announce earlier than that. He definitely announced earlier, a lot earlier.

He spoke to Al Golden Saturday and committed to the Miami Hurricanes. That is big for UM and that gives them a total of 22 verbal commitments at this time. Thomas' commitment puts the 'Canes at No. 10 in the Team Rankings on Scout.

Lamont Gaillard
Gaillard had 20-plus offers.
UM is getting one of the top defensive ends in the country and his game has really taken off. A year ago, he was all about speed and using his quickness to get up the field, but he has added about 15-20 pounds, he is playing stronger, and he is much better at the point of attack. He could continue to ascend up the rankings and push for that fifth star before all is said and done.

Miami is No. 2 in ACC on Scout's Team Rankings and Georgia is No. 2 SEC and No. 2 in the country behind No. 1 ranked Tennessee.

Thomas surprised many when he committed to Miami Saturday, but Georgia landing Lamont Gaillard was expected.

Gaillard had tripped to Athens on his own before, but this time his mother accompanied him, and the decision was made.

Georgia had been in the lead for this 6-foot-3, 315 pound defensive tackle out of Fayetteville (N.C.) Pine Forest for some time now and he is now a Bulldog.

The No. 3 defensive tackle in the country gives Georgia 16 verbal commitments. UGA will not be able to sign a full class in 2014, so their numbers are starting to get tight. They will likely sign around 22 in this class.

Landing Gaillard is big for multiple reasons. He can move around in their defensive front playing over the center or out at defensive end in their 3-4 scheme. He moves very well, he is quick off the ball, and has good strength. His best football is ahead of him too as he continues to shape his body and improve his technique.

Chad Simmons is currently a National Recruiting Analyst for FOX Sports/Scout. He started with Scout in 2003 and then moved on to another Recruiting Service from 2004-2008 before returning to Scout the first of 2009 to become South Recruiting Manager.
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