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PREP BASKETBALL: New Newton guard makes his decision
Twitter photo

COVINGTON, Ga. - Newton Rams 2020 point guard Caleb Byrd had a big-time announcement for Twitter Thursday when he announced his commitment to the Georgia Southern Eagles.

With around 20 scholarship offers, Byrd, a transfer from Rome, had narrowed his list to Murray State, Wofford College and Georgia Southern July 20.

On Sept. 12, Byrd announced on Twitter that he was "110% committed" to the Eagles and head coach Mark Byington's program.

Byrd said throughout his recruiting process, he was always looking for the best fit for him. After taking his official visit last weekend in Statesboro, Byrd wholeheartedly believes he has found where he fits in best.

"I was looking for the best fit all around, and Georgia Southern gave me it all from the teammates to everyone on campus," he said. "It just made me feel like I was family when I first got on campus."

Byrd said the ability to stay at home was not a significant factor in his decision, but with the opportunity to play in front of his family now presenting itself, Byrd sees it as an amazing bonus.

"I didn't care how far I went, but it just worked out that way," he said. "I thank God that I get to stay home and my family gets to support me and I'm not that far, so that was just a plus with making my decision."

 Byrd is a 5-10" point guard that originally played high school ball in Rome but moved to play his senior year at Newton.

Although he has not played in a single game for the Rams, his film shows he is a very talented guard that shines with the ball in his hand. Last season, Byrd averaged close to 35 points per game and was named as a class AAAAA first-team all-state selection.

Byrd is a lethal scorer that should pair up nicely with the Rams' Shawn Smith. If Smith and Byrd find chemistry under new head coach Charlemagne Gibbons, they should create an unstoppable scoring combo that will fill the void left by departing players like Armani Harris, Tre Clark and Tyrease Brown.

 Gibbons believes the Eagles are getting an outstanding player that will excel both on and off the court.

"Caleb will give them a lead guard that can score and distribute the basketball at a high level," he said. "He will also be a leader off the court and excels in the classroom as well."

While Gibbons believes that Byrd will be a massive help for the Eagles, he also thinks the program will bring a lot to the table for Byrd's progression as well.

"I think it was a great decision," Gibbons said. "Georgia Southern has done a great job with guards over the last few years especially locally with Tookie Brown who was four times an all-conference player."

Byrd's performances at Rome have shown his outstanding basketball ability, but this upcoming winter and spring will be his time to shine and show his new team what he is capable of doing on the court.