Transfer trend shows no signs of slowing

November 4, 2016 – Roswell, Ga: Roswell wide receiver Christian Ford (3) runs down the sideline against Cherokee linebacker Mckinley Hunter (23) in the first half of their game at Roswell High School Friday November 4, 2016, in Roswell, Ga. The winner is the Region 4-AAAAAAA champion. PHOTO / JASON GETZ

The GHSA’s membership was so worked up about transfers last season that a special committee was formed to discuss methods to discourage them. After months of study that included questionnaires, the committed proposed a rule that would require transfer student-athletes to sit out 50 percent of the season at their new schools.

In May, the GHSA’s executive committee tabled the proposal, wanting more study. But expect the issue to be revisited.

Meanwhile, several high-profile football players made moves this offseason. Here are some of them.

*Michael Harris was the Region 4-AAAAAA defensive player of the year last season for Lovejoy, the region runner-up. Harris now has joined the enemy, region champion Tucker, for his senior season. He’s originally from DeKalb County, playing his sophomore season at Miller Grove, so he’s closer to home. Harris was first-team AJC all-state in 2016, when he had 137 total tackles, 12 for losses. He is committed to Auburn.

*Rico Frye of Creekside is now at Cartersville, which is seeking a third consecutive Class AAAA title and 15-0 finish. Frye has more than 4,000 yards rushing in his career. He got most of it while at Starr’s Mill as a freshman and sophomore but ran for close to 1,000 yards in just seven games (slowed by injury) last year at Creekside.

*Marietta picked up at least three significant players, two who will be catching balls for highly touted QB Harrison Bailey. One is WR Christian Ford, who had 37 catches for Class AAAAAAA runner-up Roswell. Ford has a couple of ACC offers. Even more significant for the long haul are CB Dawson Ellington and TE Arik Gilbert, who are major national recruits not coincidentally in Bailey’s sophomore class. Both have at least eight offers, one each from Alabama. They came from Woodward Academy.

> Meet the 2017 AJC Super 11

*Hapeville Charter, a Class AA semifinalist last season and rising state power, will benefit from two key transfers. RB/WR Tyleek Collins came from defending AA champion Benedictine, for which he rushed for 990 yards last season, 1,262 the year before. The other is former Peachtree Ridge DE Kingsley Enagbare, who is committed to South Carolina.

*Calvary Day DE Nolan Smith, a five-star junior recruit, transferred to IMG Academy of Bradenton, Fla. Smith is committed to Georgia. IMG has picked up at least four Georgia prospects. They include Carrollton DT Josh Walker (committed to Arizona), Hughes ILB Charles Thomas (committed to Michigan) and Hapeville Charter WR Jermaine Burton (several SEC offers). The harvesting of Georgia talent has ruffled state coaches, and the GHSA moved last year to block Georgia teams from scheduling IMG.

*Tyler and Dylan Fromm, the twin brothers of Georgia freshman QB Jake Fromm, have left Houston County for Warner Robins. Tyler had 35 receptions for 543 yards in 10 games last season catching balls from Jake. Now, he’ll be catching them from Dylan, Jake’s seldom-used but talented backup. The twins are juniors.

*Cedar Grove, the defending Class AAA champion, has picked up DT Rashad Cheney from Washington. A four-star recruit, Cheney is committed to Georgia.

*TE/LB Tommy Tremble, who had 43 catches for 979 yards last season at Johns Creek, has moved to Wesleyan and made the preseason all-state list in Class A. His best offers come from Notre Dame, Georgia and Tennessee.

*Tyler Gillis of Buford was a first-team all-region performer last season for Lambert. The wide receiver had 40 receptions for 1,005 yards and 15 touchdowns. Gillis’s quarterback will be Aaron McLaughlin, a highly touted freshman who transferred into Buford schools. He had been slated to attend North Gwinnett, for which he played youth ball.

*DB Nicolas Toomer, a first-team all-region player at Landmark Christian last season, is at Sandy Creek. Toomer finished in the top four in the 400 meters and triple jump at the Class A track-and-field meet last spring.

*RB Emeka Nwanze has transferred across north Fulton County from Northview to Centennial. Nwanze is called Nigerian Nightmare 2.0. The original would be Kansas City Chiefs FB Christian Okoye from the 1980s. Nwanze has named Wake Forest as his leader.

*CB/WR Donte Burton, who has offers from Notre Dame, North Carolina and others, has transferred from Central Gwinnett to Loganville.

*Junior CB Antione “All Day” Davis, an all-region performer last season at Tattnall Square, is now playing at Mary Persons.

*Roswell got a Christmas present in December when Lincolnton (N.C.) QB Cordel Littlejohn and LB/RB Jamal Littlejohn confirmed that they would be moving to Georgia. Cordel passed for 3,655 yards and 50 touchdowns last season. Jamal played significantly on both sides of the ball. They are cousins of Roswell star TE Tyneil Hopper.

*Evan Conley passed for 2,276 yards (17 touchdowns) and rushed for 917 (19 touchdowns) in just 10 games as a sophomore last season. And that was for Pope, a 3-7 team. Now he’s at East Cobb neighbor Kell, which has averaged 10.7 wins over the past seven seasons.

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