February 5, 2013
Meet the Recruit: Kirk Garner
I like tall, physical cornerbacks who can run and hit. I also like slick, speedy, athletic cornerbacks who can shut down opposing receivers in coverage. But my favorite type of cornerbacks are the ones who work hard to hone their craft, play like real battlers on the field, and beat you with strong technique and the elimination of mistakes. Strong, tough WORKERS. Kirk Garner is my favorite type of cornerback. At 5-11, 180, he doesn't wow you with his size. Running a 4.55, he doesn't wow you with his speed. But he wows everyone who sees him play with a tenacity and a technical know-how that is truly unique to players at his position at this age. 247 gave Garner a high 3-star rating, just on the verge of 4-star status. Rivals liked him enough to go ahead and give him that fourth star. For my money, he's a better cornerback recruit than Tim Harris, and that's really saying something. (Harris is a stud.)
UVA Projection: No doubt, he should redshirt his true freshman season, but if none of the redshirt freshmen (C.J. Moore, Divante Walker, Kelvin Rainey) are ready for spots in the two-deep in 2013, my money is on Garner to beat our Harris for a crack at some playing time as a true freshman. For his UVA career, I think Garner projects to be a solid 2- or 3-year starter, with decent NFL aspirations after his senior season. Players like him are unique, and I'm excited to see what he can do against receivers who rely too much on their raw athleticism at the college level. In any case, between Harris and Garner, we have done an excellent job of addressing the cornerback position in the 2013 recruiting class.