Pied Piper: Talented musician Curran attracting recruits to follow his lead to UGA

Brookwood linebacker Rennie Curran could be considered a modern-day Pied Piper of Hamelin, only his intentions are better.

The multi-talented musician - he is skilled on the viola, drums and piano - also is attempting to get a group to follow him, much like the piper in the Brothers Grimm folk tale. But instead of attracting rats to a river, the senior lures fellow football recruits to Athens.

And he's not using a musical instrument to do it.

Not with modern technology like MySpace.com and cell phone calls available, Curran's tools to talk up the benefits of Georgia, the school he committed to back in April.

"I just say hey, what's up, ask them how their team's doing, things like that," said Curran, a Daily Post Super Six selection. "Most of the guys I talk to I met earlier at combines and all that stuff. I'm not doing it to get the top players (to Georgia). Most of the guys are just real cool. I just want guys on the team that are cool."

That's why he stays in close contact with fellow Bulldog commitments Conrad Obi of Grayson and Charles White of Blythewood, S.C. But he also has become closer friends with some top uncommitted players, like Nick Claytor of Gainesville, Jonathan Dwyer of Kell and Caleb King of Greater Atlanta Christian.

Curran's enthusiasm about Georgia can be persuasive.

"Rennie is actually a pretty strong personality," Brookwood head coach Mark Crews said. "He's kind of quiet, he's not going to be the rah-rah guy most of the time. But he's got a pretty strong personality. And he believes in what he's doing. So I'm sure just like he's an ambassador for us, he's an ambassador for UGA, too.

"He sort of knew from the beginning if Georgia offered him, that's what he was going to do. He called it his dream school. So he's probably a pretty good salesman for them."

The 5-foot-11, 215-pound linebacker didn't have to do much selling to the recruiters from Georgia. He got an early offer from the Bulldogs and didn't take long to accept it, becoming their third commitment from the Class of 2007 in April.

Crews said a quick look at video of Curran's games will tell the story. It did with many college scouts.

"You look at Rivals.com and that kind of stuff," Crews said. "They put those video clips of the best players up there and lots of times those guys look like they're in faster speed on video than the rest of them. Sort of like they're in fast forward and the rest of the players are at regular speed. That's the way Rennie is.

"He just has the uncanny ability to figure out which one has the ball and get to him. He's extremely strong, quick, a good tackler. He's got all those things you'd want a good defensive player to have."

Those talents have led to tons of tackles.

Curran made a county-best 198 stops as a junior, 41 ahead of Gwinnett's No. 2 tackler. His total was 104 more than his next closest teammate, fellow linebacker Joe Moore.

Factor in the 145 tackles - also best in the county - Curran made in 11 games as a sophomore, and that gives him an amazing 343 tackles in two seasons. A lot of those tackles could have been made by teammates, but he simply beat them to the spot.

"You watch the film and you see three or four people breaking down like normal football players ready to make the play," Crews said. "Then all of a sudden (Curran) comes out of nowhere and gets there before they do. It's an oddity I guess. Literally you can watch as three or four others are about to make a play and he'll come through there and hit (the ball carrier). Sort of like a flash coming out of nowhere."

Strictly a defensive player last year, that flash will be on offense some this year as a fullback. But don't expect 20 carries a game.

Curran will be part of a rotation on offense, used in spot situations to keep him rested for defense. But in short yardage or at other key times, he can be a factor.

He would love to have a bigger role on offense, since he grew up as a running back, but he is willing to do whatever it takes to help the team. He wants to finish high school in ideal fashion and erase the memories of last year's state-title game loss to Lowndes.

"Definitely getting to the state championship game and winning it is what we're looking for," Curran said. "That's our goal."