December 1, 2010

Under a watchful eye

As Valdosta's Jay Rome ponders his litany of offers, his father Stan Rome continues to follow the process with a watchful eye.

One of the state's most highly-recruited players, Rome has yet to publically narrow his list of schools much less offer an indication to when a final decision might be made.

"Basically, all I'm interested in is whatever makes him happy and wherever makes him comfortable, that's it," said the elder Rome, who starred collegiately at Clemson before moving on to the NFL. "His comfort level is what's important to myself and my wife. Of course, my wife is very interested in the academic programs at all the schools, but the key is going to be where Jay feels like he fits in the most and where he feels the most comfortable with the people who are there."

The Georgia Bulldogs are one of those teams Rome continues to seriously consider.

Last weekend, Rome was one of 90 or so recruits who took in Georgia's 42-34 win over Georgia Tech last Saturday in Sanford Stadium.

Although Stan Rome said he and his son were pressed for time and did not stay as long as they would have liked, it was a trip well worth their while.

"We did not have a whole lot of time, but of course, we enjoyed ourselves and it was a good game to watch. Everything was fine," Rome said. "We hope to take an official visit in the next few weeks and see more."

Rome said his son will be back in Athens on Dec. 11 when the Bulldogs hold their annual gala at the Classic Center in downtown Athens.

Rome chuckled that recruiting is certainly different than he was coming up in the early 1970s.

Many old-timers still swear that the elder Rome is still the most talented high school players in Georgia history, which makes one wonder what the hype would have been like he were being recruited today.

"Oh, not really," said Rome, when asked if the thought's ever crossed his mind. "But it is completely different now."

Rome said he's never pushed his son toward any one school, and that includes Clemson, which is also getting a closer look from the talented young star.

"Basically, I'm just there for support and also to try and keep him level-headed and keep him humble," Rome said. "Basically, I just try to keep him from getting too anxious and try to slow it all down. I just want him to enjoy the whole process."

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