New in ’16: Could late arrival Ajani Kerr end up as ‘the guy’?

Georgia Tech freshman cornerback Ajani Kerr on national signing day. (AJC photo by Curtis Compton)

Georgia Tech freshman cornerback Ajani Kerr on national signing day. (AJC photo by Curtis Compton)

As the last player offered in the Georgia Tech signing class, incoming freshman cornerback Ajani Kerr has pretty good company. Others who were late to join the signing class in coach Paul Johnson’s tenure – linebackers Julian Burnett and P.J. Davis, two of the most productive defensive players in recent history. Two more are A-back Clinton Lynch and wide receiver Brad Stewart.

It speaks to the vagaries of recruiting rankings, coaches’ judgements and that a player’s career trajectory is often determined by his determination and health. Kerr is ready to take his shot.

“I want to be able to say I gave back and I took advantage of the opportunities that Tech gave me, and I made an impact on people,” he said.

Kerr is the only scholarship cornerback in the class. There are four cornerbacks who are freshmen or sophomores – sophomore Lamont Simmons, redshirt freshmen Dorian Walker and Meiko Dotson and Kerr.

“I bring length to the secondary, I think, and then I bring intensity,” he said. “I feel like I know the game pretty well.

Kerr, who was recruited by safeties coach Andy McCollum and cornerbacks coach Joe Speed, is 6-foot-0 and 181 pounds. He can tackle well in space and can play the ball well when it’s in the air. He has a shot to play this fall, most likely if he can demonstrate an ability to play special teams early in camp.

Part of Kerr’s relatively quiet recruiting presence was due to the fact that he transferred to McEachern High prior to his senior season from Whitefield Academy. Once at McEachern, he was one of several Division I prospects in his class. Should Kerr’s career end up anything like Burnett’s or Davis’, the fact that he was the last member of the class to join and was a mere two-star prospect who flipped from Central Michigan will be long forgotten.

“We’re excited to get him,” McCollum said. “He’s going to be one of those guys that might not have been talked about as much, but we’ve had a few of them these last few years that ended up being the guy.”

Series to date:

AB Xavier Gantt adds ‘explosive’ playmaking to A-back mix

DT Brandon Adams brings size, playmaking ability

LB Jakob Brashear says he won’t be outworked

WR Jalen Camp wants ‘to make a statement’

OL Kenny Cooper bringing attitude, athleticism to Tech line

WR Stephen Dolphus brings the tools, drive to Tech

WR Jair Hawkins-Anderson threatens with top-end speed


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