In a news report posted late Sunday night on the website of Huntsville, Ala. television station WHNT, Trey Flowers, a defensive lineman from there who was once recruited by Georgia Tech, said the coaches at another school were more welcoming than those in Midtown Atlanta.
Over the weekend, the defensive end switched his commitment from Tech to Arkansas.
"The coaches were more lenient and more welcoming at Arkansas than Georgia Tech," Flowers said on the report.
Flowers was one of several de-commits for the Yellow Jackets' latest recruiting class. In addition to him, that group was highlighted by southeast Georgia defensive lineman Tre Jackson and defensive end Stephon Tuitt. Jackson de-committed last week ahead of a visit to Florida State. Tuitt did so two weeks prior, when he ultimately chose Notre Dame over Tech.
What does it all mean? Who knows? The only thing that truly can be gleaned from this comment is that this particular player believed he was more comfortable playing for Bobby Petrino and his staff rather than Tech head coach Paul Johnson's. No other de-commits have relayed such sentiments publicly.
Petrino has been vilified in Atlanta since 2007, when he unexpectedly left the Atlanta Falcons for the Arkansas job. With games still left on the Falcons' schedule, the head coach made no formal announcement about his departure to players. Instead, he slipped notes in their lockers. Some didn't know he was gone until he was seen in Arkansas the next day celebrating his arrival there.
Flowers' statement can be dissected, analyzed and criticized any manner of ways. Maybe it's just player preference. He saw something in Fayetteville, Ark. that made him more comfortable than the bright city lights of Atlanta... Again, who knows?
In addition to his comments, one also must take into account the statement made by Flowers' father, who says that from the beginning, the family was looking at "ACC, SEC, Big East schools." Perhaps growing up in northern Alabama, Flowers had SEC in his blood and when he got the chance to go to an SEC school, he jumped at it. Perhaps that's the sole root of his comments.
Prior to committing to Georgia Tech earlier this month, Flowers' biggest offer was from Louisville. Air Force and Alabama-Birmingham appeared to be the other schools he could have been destined to go to.
According to Rivals.com, Flowers is a 3-star defensive end. He boasts a 4.8 40-meter time.
So, what do you say about Flowers' comments? Feel free to post your own below.