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January 3, 2011

Army Bowl: Holliman will announce

MORE ARMY BOWL: Ten things to watch | Complete coverage

SAN ANTONIO - Gerod Holliman will be taking the mystery out of the recruiting process very soon.

The four-star safety from Miami has completed his official visits and plans to announce among finalists of Ole Miss, LSU, West Virginia and Louisville on Saturday during the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, which will be televised nationally on NBC.

"I've finalized (the decision) in my mind right now," Holliman said between East squad practices Monday.

A one-time Ole Miss commitment along with Southridge High School teammate Andrew Johnson, also a defensive back, Holliman de-committed from the Rebels about three weeks ago.

Johnson is expected to make a commitment Thursday at the Nike South Florida All-Star game. Both prospects have talked about the decision and have similar finalists in Louisville, Ole Miss and West Virginia, but whether they'll play together in college isn't a done deal yet.

"We've talked about it a lot," Holliman said. "I told him to make the best decision for you. If it's God's will then we'll play on the same team."

Holliman went on to break down his four finalists heading into Saturday.

On West Virginia: "I love the defense they run. They run the same defense I run in high school. I had a good season, a good couple of seasons, in that scheme. So that's why they're in the top."

On LSU: "They have a good program going. They're always in the race for the championship."

On Ole Miss: "I'd get good playing time. (It's) a good campus. I love the campus. I've built a great relationship with the coach out there."

On Louisville: "I love the school. I know a lot of the players that go out there. I had a fun time on my visit up there and I love the coaches."

Jernigan talk of the day

If there was one player to catch the attention of his teammates Monday at the East team's practice, it was four-star defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan.

Jernigan was nearly unstoppable during one-on-one drills, with only Aundrey Walker able to slow him. Most of the time, Jernigan dominated while anchoring a very deep defensive line that included standout performances from Ishaq Williams, Stephon Tuitt, Delvon Simmons, Ray Drew and Aaron Lynch.

"It's something I really look forward to," Jernigan said. "I felt like I would do all right. I've been going against guys that were older than me my whole life. I started playing varsity when I was in ninth grade. I experienced it then. In Florida, the competition level in Florida is really different. I feel like I was prepared for it coming in, but the competition level out here is unbelievable. There's a lot of competition."

Jernigan drew the attention of his teammates along the defensive line and also those without a close vantage point.

At one point, defensive backs and linebackers practicing or taking a break on the other side of the field were talking about what a beast Jernigan was during drills and how big an impact he could have during Saturday's game.

"He's got good technique," Lynch said. "He knows what he's doing. He looks like he's been through college already. He's got everything. He's set. He's the real deal."

Jernigan hopes to use this week of practice and the game to prove he's the best defensive tackle in the country. And it doesn't have anything to do with his physical ability.

"I wouldn't even say the speed or the physical attributes," Jernigan said of what separates him from other defensive tackles in this class. "I'm smart. I know the game. I know this position. I've been doing this since I was 9-years old. I know the game."

Richardson sits with injury

Offensive tackle Antonio Richardson tweaked his right shoulder during an early contact portion of practice and sat out the remainder of the first session.

He did, however, return for the no-pads session after lunch and expects to go full pads Tuesday. Richardson said the injury won't limit his ability to perhaps start at left tackle during the game.

"I don't know," Richardson said between practice sessions. "I did some kind of funky movement. Just like I did when I injured it earlier this year. But it should be a quick recovery."

Fluid positions

Four-star safety Wayne Lyons lined up at both his natural position and cornerback during practice, perhaps a sign of the future, he said.

Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater spent some time split out at wide receiver, while running back James Wilder Jr. took some reps as a Wildcat quarterback.

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