Georgia cornerback Kelee Ringo announced Thursday that he is declaring for the NFL Draft after a standout redshirt sophomore season with the Bulldogs. Ringo earned second-team All-SEC honors while helping to anchor the Bulldogs' secondary as the program captured its second consecutive national title.
"When I arrived in Athens on my first visit I knew I was home," Ringo wrote in a message posted to social media. "You welcomed me with your southern hospitality that most people in the world wouldn't understand. Over my three years a student athlete I've gained many memories, experiences, and most importantly an amazing education."
Ringo missed his true freshman season in 2020 while rehabilitating from surgery but began living up to his five-star prospect billing as a sophomore in 2021 when he stepped into the starting lineup early in the season and became a key cog for a dominant unit. As one of few returning starters for Georgia's defense in 2022, Ringo took on a spotlight role for the unit. He finished the season with 42 tackles and two interceptions
On the field, many will remember Ringo's interception return for a touchdown that helped seal the Bulldogs' national title win over Alabama last season. Off the field, Ringo's story resonated nationally during his time at Georgia as his mother battled breast cancer. Ringo became a fundraiser in the fight against the disease.
"You all have been with me through the highs and lows," Ringo wrote. "And as a God fearing man I am most thankful for your continuing prayers, support, and thoughts around breast cancer awareness, specifically the support around my mother Traelee Hale - she is my rock."
Kelee Ringo's NFL Draft stock
Ringo is ranked as the No. 10 overall player and top cornerback in the 2023 CBS Sports NFL Draft Prospect Rankings. CBS NFL Draft experts Ryan Wilson, Chris Trapasso and Josh Edwards each listed Ringo as a first-round pick in their most recent mock drafts. Wilson is highest on Ringo, projecting him as the No. 16 overall pick of the Washington Commanders.
"The Georgia-to-first-round pipeline continues," Wilson wrote. "A year after five Bulldogs went in Round 1, expect a handful this time around, too. Kelee Ringo is a long, physical corner who has matched up against some of the best players in the country."
Impact on Georgia
Redshirt freshman Nyland Green was listed behind Ringo on the Georgia depth chart for the ahead of the program's College Football Playoff National Championship Game victory over TCU. A former five-star prospect from the Class of 2021, Green could be in line for a larger role next season after appearing in 11 contests during the 2022 season.
If not Green, the Bulldogs should have several other capable options at Ringo's vacated position. Former five-star prospect Daylen Everette played mostly as a reserve during his true freshman campaign and could also be in line for a featured role next season.
Another highly touted member of Georgia's secondary is departing, however, as Jaheim Singletary plans to enter the transfer portal, according to Dawgs247. Singletary played in three games during his true freshman season in 2022 after entering as a four-star prospect in the Class of 2022.