Lincoln pipeline brings safety Garye to USF
First there was Ryan Gilliam and Keeley Dorsey, who paved the way for B.J. Daniels to come to USF, and the pipeline from Tallahassee Lincoln High to USF will continue in 2011 when safety Chris Garye Jr. joins the Bulls.
The 6-foot-3, 205-pound rising senior committed to USF coach Skip Holtz on Wednesday -- while he's just the fourth commitment toward the Bulls' next recruiting class, he didn't miss out on the last spot for an incoming safety.
"They said USF was only taking two safeties in this class, and one had committed already," said Garye, who said he had a strong list of offers, including Clemson, Mississippi, Iowa, Kentucky, Illinois and Vanderbilt.
Garye attended USF's Junior Day event in April and came away impressed by the close relationships that USF coaches had with their players.
"All the coaches stay on top of their athlete's academics. I like when a coach cares about his players like that," said Garye (pronounced "Gary").
Garye was a freshman receiver when Daniels was a senior at Lincoln, and he said he followed USF more closely last fall because of Daniels.
Garye, who had three interceptions and 36 tackles (12 for loss) last season, is a two-star recruit according to Scout.com -- Rivals.com hasn't evaluated him yet. His coach at Lincoln, Yusuf Shakir, said Garye's size jumps out right away, but his football smarts can be seen in the way he's handled other positions in previous seasons, like quarterback and receiver.
"He brings us a physical presence in the back end -- you see how big he is," said Shakir, who came to Lincoln from Gibbs High in St. Petersburg.
Garye played both safety positions as a junior (even some outside linebacker) and said he's likely a strong safety at USF. He's USF's fourth commitment for 2011 and second this week, following Stone Mountain (Ga.) Stephenson running back Willie Davis. The Bulls already have a safety committed for 2011 in Pahokee's Rontavious Atkins.
(UPDATE: You can check out a bunch of clips of Garye from Lincoln's football site, trojanrecruiting.com. He's No. 7 to make it easier to spot him.)