Malik Herring couldn’t help it.
Sure, he knew long before his public commitment that he was heading to Georgia, and he has spent plenty of time working on getting other top-flight players to head to Athens since that announcement.
So National Signing Day shouldn’t have been quite the big deal, right?
“I didn’t sleep at all,” the standout defensive lineman from Mary Persons said Wednesday after joining four teammates in a signing ceremony. “I went to sleep at like 6 o’clock. I really just tried to hang it out.
“It’s a dream come true, actually. Not just dreaming about signing with Georgia, just signing, period.”
Herring committed to Georgia on Dec. 1 by way of a video produced by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, which did the same with Vidalia linebacker and Georgia signee Nate McBride later that month.
Herring sported a Georgia cap, as well as a jacket and bow tie in a red that was almost Georgia red. And the scores of family members who posed with him for pictures were adorned in Georgia attire.
Five more Bulldogs who led Mary Persons to the Class 4A semifinals in 2016 and into the second round in 2015 signed on Wednesday, with four joining Herring at a crowded ceremony.
Tre Howard, the Region 2-4A co-defensive player of the year, is headed to Hutchinson (Kansas) Community College, but was ill and unable to attend. Receiver Roger Akin also signed with Hutchinson.
Offensive lineman Caleb Etheridge is the second Mary Persons lineman in three years to sign with Western Kentucky. He’ll join former teammate Tyler Camp, a redshirt freshman.
Defensive back Tay Jarrell signed with Fort Valley State.
Running back Zach Harvey signed with Wingate, a Division II program in North Carolina, where he’ll be reunited with former Mary Persons teammates Malik Bledsoe and J.T. Stokes, sophomore wideouts.
Seniors Jatori Sims, Dalon Edge, Dan O’Neal, and Tyricus Danielly are expected to sign soon.