Fact or Fiction: JT Daniels' transfer will affect Brock Vandagriff's pledge
National recruiting director Mike Farrell and national recruiting analyst Adam Gorney tackle three topics daily and determine whether they believe the statements or not.
MORE FACT OR FICTION: Georgia is the right fit for JT Daniels
CLASS OF 2022: Top 100
1. JT Daniels' move to Georgia will impact Brock Vandagriff's pledge.
Farrell’s take: FICTION. JT Daniels is a big-time transfer and could compete with Brock Vandagriff for Georgia's starting quarterback in 2021, but that’s not going to send the five-star quarterback packing. Yes, the Bulldogs have had some trouble managing the quarterback room and juggling talented signal-callers, but this should play out nicely. Jamie Newman will start this season after transferring from Wake Forest and then Daniels or Vandagriff will take over next year. If Daniels wins the job, he’ll move on to the NFL right after and Vandagriff would be in line to pick up after that. It’s hard to predict the future when it comes to quarterbacks, but Daniels' addition to the Georgia roster should have zero impact on Vandagriff.
Gorney’s take: FICTION. Georgia had three five-star quarterbacks in a row from Jacob Eason to Jake Fromm to Justin Fields and really only got significant contributions from Fromm as Eason transferred to Washington after losing his job to Fromm and Fields went to Ohio State after not playing much behind Fromm.
Kirby Smart and his staff could handle this set of five-stars coming in much better, although not everyone will always be happy. Daniels picking Georgia was definitely interesting because he has a small window to prove himself between Newman and Vandagriff. I don’t think Georgia has anything to worry about with Vandagriff’s commitment right now, but I’m sure Florida and other programs are going to push until the very end since he’s such a talented prospect who already backed off an early pledge to Oklahoma.
2. Aside from Jim Harbaugh, Kirby Smart gets the most scrutiny from the media.
Farrell’s take: FACT. Between the infamous fake punt against Alabama in the 2018 SEC title game, losing to the Crimson Tide earlier that year in the national title game where many felt he was outcoached, his handling of Justin Fields and the regression of Jake Fromm, Smart has been the subject of near constant media criticism. He has been recruiting off the hook, but his coaching ability is routinely questioned and that puts him second to Jim Harbaugh on my list.
Gorney’s take: FICTION. Smart has actually gotten a pass from the media on some bad decisions - many of them mentioned above - including when Georgia inexplicably lost to South Carolina at home last season. It’s almost universally accepted that Smart is recruiting so well and he has such a good staff that a national championship at some point is inevitable. I don’t think he gets much scrutiny at all. It’s a different story for Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly, Auburn’s Gus Malzahn and USC’s Clay Helton, so I’d say those three trail Harbaugh in this category.
3. The ‘Canes will win more than 8 games next season.
Farrell’s take: FACT. Speaking of coaches under media scrutiny, Manny Diaz is under pressure this season but Miami should be fine — to an extent. Coming off a 6-7 season including embarrassing losses to FIU and Louisiana Tech, things need to change for Miami. I can see Miami having a 9-3 season if they don’t trip up against some weak opponents. The schedule is ridiculously easy with very few tests and they should battle North Carolina for the division title with the addition of quarterback D’Eriq King. If they win less than 8 games, that would be an embarrassment.
Gorney’s take: FACT. Miami’s schedule is not so easy. The Hurricanes visit Michigan State in late September, go to Virginia in late October and take a trip to Blacksburg later in the season as well. Florida State is not going to be worse and North Carolina is going to be a battle. I still think Miami gets to nine wins because there is a tremendous upgrade at quarterback and the defensive line should be one of the nation’s best. If Diaz cannot get at least eight wins this season at a minimum then he’s in trouble.