Kirby Smart loves himself as a defensive lineman. Specifically, Smart loves a pass-rushing defensive end that will create havoc on every down. That is what Smart and the Georgia Bulldogs have picked up here with the news that class of 2023 Edge rusher Gabriel Harris out of Valdosta (Valdosta, GA) High School has chosen to stay in-state for his college experience.
Harris is a 4-star Edge rusher per the 247Sports Composite. He is rated as the No. 90 overall player, the No. 9 Edge rusher, and the No. 7 player in the state of Georgia in the class. He picked the Bulldogs out of a group of finalists that included instate rival Georgia Tech, and SEC foes Florida and Arkansas. He was also committed to Florida State for a time in 2021 before decommitting and focusing his own interest on a scholarship with the Bulldogs.
The eighth commit to the Georgia class of 2023, the 6-foot-4, 240 pound Harris is equally capable against the run and the pass. In his film below you can see many of his tackles from last season, with 49 total stops of which 12.5 were for a loss and seven were sacks.
The first play shows Harris as a special teams player. Here he uses his rangy stride to track down and dump the kickoff returner in an impressive fashion. Clips of Harris against the run – and specifically the option run – showcase a player adept at getting off of blocks in a hurry and making the right read when in the offensive backfield. Harris always seems to hit with power and his knowledge of the game means that running backs will have real issues attacking his side of the field.
Later plays – where Harris is pass rushing – show a player able to get skinny at the point of attack to knife into the backfield. Harris has just enough wiggle in his hips to get an offensive lineman fooled, then uses his impressive speed to get to the quarterback basically untouched.