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This Week: National Signing Day the next step for future college prospects
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Wednesday is the biggest offseason day for college football fans eager to see their favorite program build for the future. National Signing Day is when high school players get the chance to make often-times shaky verbal commitments permanent with a signed letter of intent.

Once again, the University of Georgia is almost a lock for a Top 10 ranking nationally, but will not be certain until athletes that are on the bubble make their final decision.

After signing day, the Class of 2014 becomes the center of attention. Locally, Gainesville junior quarterback Deshaun Watson will be one of the top prospects nationally as a four-star prospect by Rivals.com.

He has official offers from schools such as Clemson, Georgia, Ohio State, Georgia Tech, Auburn, North Carolina, Florida State, Vanderbilt and Tennessee, among many others.

Watson is currently verbally committed to Clemson.

For the Class of 2013, Flowery Branch High has the largest signing class. Expected signings for the Falcons are Darius Curry (Oklahoma State), Chandler Bridges (Louisville), Kristopher Smith and Noel Padmore (Indiana), and Jacob Allen (Northeast Oklahoma).

Flowery Branch coach Chris Griffin expects three other players to make decisions this week and also sign a letter of intent.

Class AAA state champion Buford High also has a large signing class. Offensive lineman Josh Cardiello has already signed a letter of intent with the University of Georgia. Running back Dontravious Wilson is expected to sign with Central Florida and Mikey Bart is verbally committed to North Carolina.

Jefferson High quarterback Bryant Shirreffs will sign with North Carolina State University. All verbal commitments are subject to change before the actual letter of intent has been signed.

On national signing day, athletes from all sports sign scholarship offers.

HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL: The final week of the regular season is here and vital for programs looking to improve their standing heading into region tournaments that open on Feb. 12. In Class AAAA, the Johnson High boys are the frontrunner in Region 8-AAAA, while Buford is on top in Region 7-AAA.

On the girls side, the Flowery Branch girls are the clear No. 1 seed heading into its Region 8-AAAAA tournament at Apalachee. Each region has a different format for the region tournament based on the number of teams.
The Region 8-AAAA tournament will be held at Johnson High, while the Region 7-AAA tournament is slated for North Hall.

HIGH SCHOOL WRESTLING: There’s no question that Jefferson is always the favorite to win the state championship. With 12 consecutive state titles in the individual format already under the Dragons’ belt, they look to make it 13, starting with the Class AA East state sectionals that are this weekend at Dublin.

The state championships are moving to a new location this season at the Macon Centreplex. The state championship weekend is Feb. 14-16.

Already, Jefferson has claimed its 13th consecutive duals state title (team format) this season.

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