Furman in future for North Cobb's Miller
by Emily Horos
ehoros@mdjonline.com
January 10, 2013 12:47 AM | 4175 views | 1 1 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print
North Cobb receiver Nick Miller expects to shift to the defensive secondary when he joins the football team at Furman, which he made his verbal commitment to earlier this week.
<BR>Special photo by Al Eckford
North Cobb receiver Nick Miller expects to shift to the defensive secondary when he joins the football team at Furman, which he made his verbal commitment to earlier this week.
Special photo by Al Eckford
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The last time Nick Miller went shopping for a place to play football, he settled on North Cobb and helped the Warriors to an 11-3 season and a state semifinal appearance.

This time, he knew he wanted to stay in the Southeast and settled on Furman.

The senior, who was primarily a wide receiver for the Warriors, but also saw time at corner back and returning punts, announced his verbal commitment earlier this week and plans to make the decision official on National Signing Day. Miller has been recruited as a defensive back, despite putting up nearly 1,100 yards for the North Cobb offense.

As a seventh-grader living in New Jersey, Miller was told by his father, Nate, that the family would be making a move to Georgia. Nick Miller then got to work on his computer and searched out some of the top programs in the state.

Taking into account the success the Warriors were having, and learning what he could about coach Shane Queen, Nick told his father that he wanted to go to North Cobb.

“North Cobb was ranked No. 1 at the time,” he said. “I started following the team and all the players. It was Calvin Middleton, Rico Mack and Matt Roark. I was just really excited to be a part of the North Cobb tradition.”

The Miller family made the move into the North Cobb district, and Nick began practicing with the Warriors.

“It’s a cool story,” said North Cobb coach Shane Queen. “He picked us out.”

Now, five years later, Miller picked again.

Miller said he didn’t scout Furman the way he did North Cobb because it was more love-at-first sight.

“I made my first visit and that was it,” Miller said of Greenville, S.C., school, which plays out of the Southern Conference in the Football Championship Subdivision. “I knew I liked it a lot.”

Because most of his family lives in the Southeast, Miller wants to stay in the area.

“I think it’s the best fit for me and my family,” he said. “My parents will be able to see my play every week. That was very important. The coaches — coach (Norval) McKenzie was very enthusiastic recruiting me.”

McKenzie, the Paladins’ running backs coach and recruiting coordinator, is quite familiar with Cobb County. He was a standout player at McEachern before going on to play at Vanderbilt.

Miller also said that the academic standards of Furman appealed to him, as well as the opportunity to make an early impact.

“They have said there would be the possibility that I could get early playing time,” Miller said. “I’m going to work really hard until I get on campus, so I have the best chance of maybe getting some playing time my freshman year.”

The 5-foot-10, 160-pound Miller said he knows his opponents will be bigger and faster, so he needs to become bigger and faster. But most importantly, he needs to get his head in the right spot.

“I guess I have to get out of the receiver mindset and remember that I’m a (defensive back) now,” Miller said. “I need to work on some drills and get my feet right.”

Miller credits Queen, and assistants Tom Clark and Ryne Thackston with his improved knowledge of the game.

“He’s not just a great football player. He’s a great kid,” said Queen, who thinks of Miller as family. “He has done a little bit of everything for us. He’s got a 3.3 GPA and excelled on his SATs. I think (Furman) will be a great place for him. He is a kid that is physically and mentally ready to play at the next level.”
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#1 Fan In Decatur
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January 11, 2013
Your family, coaches, teachers and friends should all be as proud of you as I am. Academics have allowed you to use athletics as an avenue to a higher education. Continue to excel in both, "Jersey". I hope Greenville and the entire Southern Conference is ready for Hurricane Nick. WELL DONE YOUNG MAN! And WELL DONE MILLER FAMILY!!!
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