By about Thursday, Dillon Bell has his mind made.
That was just the first few hours that the Houston (Texas) Kinkaid playmaker was back in Athens for his second visit of the summer and commitment was at the top of his mind.
Georgia continued to put its full-court press on the top-100 prospect out of Texas. Head coach Kirby Smart, offensive coordinator Todd Monken and wide receivers coach Cortez Hankton all played expanded roles in Bell’s courtship.
By the time he arrived back in Houston, Bell shortened his timetable for a commitment as it became more and more obvious.
“Coach Smart is a great head coach with great character and everyone at Georgia welcomed me in with open arms,” Bell said of his visit back to Athens this past weekend.
“It felt like home. It felt natural and I could see myself there as a Bulldog, in red and black. When Saturday morning got there, it was time to commit. I was feeling it on Thursday but I kept it to myself. By Friday, I wanted to tell them and couldn’t stop thinking about it.”
“It was a very tough decision and I gave a lot of thought to who I wanted to choose,” he added. “It was Georgia.”
Bell camped at Georgia back in June then returned to campus for a more in-depth tour over the weekend. He spent time with Hankton and Monken going over his film from the summer workout and comparing to it a few receivers on the Bulldogs’ roster and in the NFL.
One comparison Bell received from the staff was Tom Brady’s go-to target Chris Godwin. That quickly instilled some intrigue in one of the top rising senior TAPPS prospects in the Lone Star State..
“Georgia … it’s a vibe,” Bell said. “I like everything about it. We did a tour and the coaches were making sure I got better. They have two NFL coaches on-staff in Coach Monken and Coach Hankton and others that spent time in the league. They surround themselves with people trying to get to the league and who have been successful, so why would I not want to be around that?
“Coach Hankton led my recruitment and we talked a lot and have a really good relationship. What sold me is Coach Monken going over my highlights and comparing me to Chris Godwin and AJ Brown. They put my film from the workout next to Godwin’s and everything was very similar. We were literally mirroring each other and that’s how they want to use me. I can see myself in this position making a lot of plays, being a good receiver for the team and they told me on how they’d use me and it would be comfortable.”
Two other Big Ten teams finished as runners-up to the Bulldogs. That was Michigan and Minnesota. The difference was the connections already in place at Georgia.
“It was a very tough decision,” Bell noted. “Michigan, Minnesota and Georgia were all in my top three and all of those schools felt like home. I couldn’t make a right or a wrong decision, but I went with Georgia because my relationship with Coach Hankton is crazy. That’s my dude and I’ve known (Houston native) Adonai Mitchell since I was in middle school. Our bond there is the same and to be on the same field will be special. It’s a crazy connection that led me to Georgia.”