Newnan’s Justyn Reid drawn to Georgia Tech by Chip Long

Tight end Justyn Reid was rated a two-star prospect by Rivals and unrated by recruiting-ranking services such as 247Sports and On3. Tech was his second scholarship offer, following Southeast Missouri State. (Daniel Varnado/ for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

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Tight end Justyn Reid was rated a two-star prospect by Rivals and unrated by recruiting-ranking services such as 247Sports and On3. Tech was his second scholarship offer, following Southeast Missouri State. (Daniel Varnado/ for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Georgia Tech offensive coordinator Chip Long had just the video to show Newnan High tight end Justyn Reid as part of his recruiting pitch.

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“(Long) showed me a whole highlight clip of all the tight ends he put in the NFL, showed me how he used them, what plays they ran, and I loved it,” Reid said in an interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Long, hired by coach Geoff Collins in December, operates a scheme that prominently features the tight end, and he has had ample success with it. In his three seasons at Notre Dame, for example, he trained four tight ends who went on to be drafted, three in the fourth round or higher.

For that reason and others, Reid committed to Tech, Collins and Long on Friday during an unofficial campus visit with his parents, announcing his news via Twitter the same day. He became the first tight end to commit to the 2023 signing class, making it 11 2023 prospects committed. Colquitt County’s Kamal Bonner became the 12th commitment later Monday.

Reid said he liked Long personally, calling him straightforward and funny.

“I like the way he coaches,” Reid said. “I like the way his play scheme is, how he uses tight ends and how he feels like tight ends should be used more in the offense.”

As of Monday, Reid was rated a two-star prospect by Rivals and unrated by recruiting-ranking services such as 247Sports and On3. Tech was his second scholarship offer, following Southeast Missouri State. Newnan coach Chip Walker, perhaps most notable to Tech fans as the high school coach of Calvin Johnson (and others) while at Sandy Creek High, vouched for him as an ACC-level prospect. Walker said that, during spring practice, he was probably the player most intriguing to visiting college coaches.

“I like the way he coaches. I like the way his play scheme is, how he uses tight ends and how he feels like tight ends should be used more in the offense."

- Newnan High's Justyn Reid, on Georgia Tech offensive coordinator Chip Long

“I’ve probably never had someone quite like him as a tight end,” Walker said. “He’s almost 6-5, 235 pounds. He’s got an 84-inch wingspan. He catches the ball like a receiver.”

Reid actually played receiver last year for the Cougars, as Walker had a three-year starter at tight end. Beyond the aforementioned attributes, Walker said Reid plays with a physical style suited for tight end and has a frame to add weight. Reid has also played basketball at Newnan.

“For what guys are doing nowadays in college – and I think coach Long has had a great history with tight ends – he can do all those things,” Walker said.

Long made his scholarship offer June 9 after Reid came to a prospects camp at Tech. He later made an unofficial visit and met with coaches, including Long.

“He liked how I was able to catch the ball, I was able to run, how I’m able to block, how I’m a mismatch on the field as far as being a receiver the year before,” Reid said, “so how I’m able to mismatch and go out there and line up with a safety or a linebacker and make a play.”

Reid said he didn’t want to wait to commit.

“I wanted to commit now because I wanted to lock my place in, especially with the transfer portal and all these other kids, knowing that if I wait too long, they could pick up somebody in the transfer portal,” he said.

Reid and another Tech commit, Newnan linebacker Ashton Heflin, are in position to continue a long line of players who have played for Walker at Sandy Creek and Newnan. Besides Johnson, offensive tackle Andrew Gardner, safety Isaiah Johnson, defensive lineman Trent Sellers, safety Corey Griffin and wide receiver (and now tight end) Pejé Harris have all played for Walker.

“I think he’s a great get for them,” Walker said of Reid. “I think they’ve got two really good football players.”