- Gerry Hamilton, RecruitingNation
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SAN ANTONIO -- Christian Green (Tampa, Fla./Catholic) has been slicing and dicing defenses in the Tampa area for the past three seasons as a devastating dual-threat quarterback. This week at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, the four-star athlete has taken his explosive playmaking ability to receiver.
So far, so good.
With one highlight-reel play during Wednesday's practice, Green showed he could be as big a force at receiver in the future as he's been at quarterback in the past. During a brief intersquad scrimmage, he burst off the line hitting the seam like a jet, geared down to adjust to a late throw that was slightly behind him, made the catch without losing balance, burst quickly upfield, made one vertical cut to split the closing corner and safety and then high-stepped the final 10 yards celebrating the big play.
"Christian is a tremendous athlete. He's the kind of athlete that can come out here and play anywhere," said East wide receivers coach Lee Campbell. "He has a great burst off the line, and he fights for the ball. I like the way he goes after the ball.
"After watching him move, I'm not surprised he transitioned to receiver quickly."
Neither are college coaches. They saw the potential, and it's why Green, ranked 52nd in the ESPNU 150, had more than 30 scholarship offers. A process that began with offers from the top programs in the SEC, ACC and Big Ten has been whittled down to the chosen few.
"My final three schools are Florida, Florida State and Georgia," Green said. "I'm going to Florida next weekend, and I'm going to Florida State on Jan. 29. I went to Georgia in September."
The Gators have as much recruiting momentum as any program in the country, having won battles for receiver Chris Dunkley (Pahokee, Fla./Pahokee) and defensive lineman Dominique Easley (Staten Island, N.Y./Curtis) this past weekend.
"I like the Florida program. I feel like Coach [Urban] Meyer and those guys motivate players to win, and they are going to make you better as a player. That, and they win national championships," he said. "I think that's important to go to a school that is going to win national championships and they have proven they can."
If the Gators are to add Green to their top-ranked class, they will have to upset the favored Seminoles, who have family on their side.
"They [Florida State] have just been a great program. I have always grown up a Florida State fan. A lot of my family went to Florida State," said Green, whose cousin E.G. Green played for the Seminoles. "Looking at it now, they now have stability with Jimbo Fisher, they are getting topflight recruits and I think the future is going to be real bright.
"I've had my in-home [interview] with Coach Fisher a couple of weeks ago. It went real good. I enjoyed it. He's a real good guy. I learned a lot more about him. He talked about playing me at inside and outside receiver. He talked about the transition from quarterback to receiver."
The dark-horse Bulldogs are still in the mix thanks to the trust that Green has in Georgia coach Mark Richt.
"Georgia is always been a program I liked growing up. Coach Richt seems like a real spiritual guy, and that is something I look at," Green said. "I know he's going to take care of his players and push his players to get better."
In the end, Green said he'll know where he belongs.
"Right now, it's just going to be a gut feeling. Where I feel it. I think I'll know it when I feel it," Green said. "All three schools are pretty much the same stuff. It's just where I fit in with the players and at the university."
Gerry Hamilton has covered recruiting in Texas and the Southwest for more than a decade. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Four-star ATH Christian Green is switching from quarterback to wide receiver, and judging by his play at the U.S. Army All-American game, the transition will be a smooth one.