UGASports - Meet the new freshmen: E.J. Lightsey
{{ timeAgo('2022-06-23 00:50:48 -0500') }} football Edit

Meet the new freshmen: E.J. Lightsey

What coaches hope freshman E.J. Lightsey brings to the football field pale greatly in comparison to the fact he’s healthy and well.

In February, Lightsey was shot multiple times in his hometown of Fitzgerald. Subsequent arrests were made, and Lightsey is currently at Georgia with the rest of the Bulldogs’ freshman.

Although head coach Kirby Smart has not commented on Lightsey since March, expectations are the young linebacker will make a complete recovery.

"He was actually very lucky that it wasn't worse. According to Ron (team trainer Ron Courson) it was an inch from probably getting in his heart. He's just a tremendous kid from going down and recruiting him. Everybody in the community talks about him."

E.J. Lightsey

Position: Linebacker

Height: 6-2

Weight: 210


The fact Lightsey signed with Georgia is made sweeter for some in that at one time he was committed to arch-rival Florida.

However, when the coaching change took place, Lightsey backed out and the Bulldogs pounced, convincing the south Georgia player to stay in his home state.

“He’s a kid we never stopped recruiting. We felt very strongly about him. He ran really well at our camp,” Smart said. “This guy did a great job at our camp and is not afraid to work in this day and age of speed and space play, covering people. He’s a tremendous athlete.”

South Carolina would make a late push as well, but ultimately Lightsey settled on the Bulldogs.

Although Lightsey obviously needs add mass to his 6-foot-2 frame, he’s possessing a certain kind of toughness.

Lightsey has been described as an outside linebacker with an inside linebacker’s mentality.

According to Rivals national analyst Ryan Wright “there is a confidence that exudes from Lightsey’s abilities that makes him one of the best if not the best on the field at a given time. Mixing the physical with the mental, Georgia is getting an all-out linebacker.”

While it makes sense that Georgia coaches will take it easy with Lightsey while he continues his recovery, when he is fully cleared, he appears to be as fundamentally sound as a young player could be.

Analysts not only praise Lightsey for his football IQ but make note of his speed while keeping his pads squad to the line of scrimmage.

His ability to bounce outside and make plays only adds to his apparent versatility. He also has the penchant for driving would-be tacklers backwards instead of letting plays come to him, which if he can keep that up, will earn him extra points from Smart and his defensive staff.

E.J. Lightsey is expected to make a full recovery after being the victim in a February shooting.
E.J. Lightsey is expected to make a full recovery after being the victim in a February shooting. (Rivals.com)

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