The AJC’s Super 11 team of five years ago can claim two consensus college All-Americans — Roquan Smith and Mitch Hyatt — and two chosen in the most recent NFL Draft — Terry Godwin and Chuma Edoga. The most highly regarded recruit at the time, Trenton Thompson, didn’t pan out, proving again that it’s hard to live up to the highest of expectations.
Here’s a look back at the 2014 Super 11:
Kawon Bryant, North Oconee: Bryant rushed for more than 6,500 yards in his high school career and went down as one of the 10 most prolific rushers in state history. He spent two seasons at Georgia Military, was the team MVP the second season, and played a year at Faulkner University, an NAIA school in Alabama. Bryant has gone to work full-time in his hometown, but he hasn’t given up on a football career.
Chuma Edoga, McEachern: Edoga started for two seasons at offensive tackle for USC. He was drafted in the third round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Jets, where he’ll block again for quarterback Sam Darnold, his former USC teammate.
Terry Godwin, Callaway: Godwin caught 133 passes for 1,785 yards and 11 touchdowns at Georgia, where he’ll be remembered for an MVP performance in the TaxSlayer Bowl and an iconic one-handed TD reception at Notre Dame. Godwin was drafted in the seventh round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Panthers, and his punt-return skills give him a leg up on making the team. Cam Newton has nicknamed him Pudgy.
Mitch Hyatt, North Gwinnett: Hyatt, a left tackle, left Clemson as a four-year starter, two-time national champion and consensus All-American in 2018. His failure to be drafted stunned many. He signed as a free agent with the Cowboys, and his opening exhibition game suggests he’ll struggle to make the roster.
Kaleb Kim, Mill Creek: A four-year starter in high school, Kim broke into Auburn’s starting lineup last season at center and should hold that position again this fall, now fully healthy.
Chauncey Rivers, Stephenson: Rivers signed with Georgia, but was dismissed after his freshmen season in the wake of a third arrest on marijuana possession. Rivers spent a season at East Mississippi Community College, then re-emerged at Mississippi State. He had seven tackles for losses in 2018 and returns as a starter this season at defensive end and made some preseason all-SEC teams.
Rashad Roundtree, Lakeside-Evans: Roundtree, a defensive back, signed with Georgia but played sparingly until announcing his retirement from football in January 2018. Concussions sidelined him in the 2017 season, which he spent as a student assistant coach. Roundtree posted on Twitter: “As a child, all of my dreams involved playing football and it deeply saddens me that I can’t play anymore.” Roundtree graduated in May with a degree in sports management.
Roquan Smith, Macon County: Smith signed with Georgia, won the Butkus Award as the nation’s best linebacker in 2017 and declared for the NFL Draft. He went in the first round, No. 8 overall, to the Bears. He had 122 tackles as a rookie.
Jayson Stanley, Creekside: Stanley, a wide receiver, played in 36 games with eight starts at Georgia and was better known as a special-teams ace. After running a 4.33-second 40-yard dash at the NFL combine, Stanley signed with the Falcons as a free agent. He has been tried as a cornerback, but special teams remain his ticket.
Trent Thompson, Westover: Thompson, a defensive tackle, was the consensus No 1 recruit in the country, the AJC’s all-classification player of the year and USA Today’s national defensive player of the year. He played three seasons at Georgia, declared for the NFL Draft, but went unselected and was cut by the Browns after they signed him as a free agent. Thompson played for arena-league teams in Arizona and Washington, D.C., this year before signing with the Edmonton Eskimos of the CFL, but he was released with their final cuts June 9.
Preston Williams, Lovejoy: Williams led Lovejoy to a state finals appearance in 2013 but suffered a torn ACL during his senior season. He signed with Tennessee, played sparingly for two seasons, then transferred to Colorado State, where he had a monster season of 96 receptions for 1,345 yards and 14 touchdowns in 2018. Williams went undrafted, in part because of off-field questions, but signed with a free agent with the Dolphins and is expected to make the team, if not start.
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