Georgia landed one of the top running back recruits in the nation on Friday after American Heritage High School (Florida) star Sony Michel committed to the Bulldogs.
According to The Macon Telegraph reporter Seth Emerson, Michel now has a verbal commitment to Mark Richt and the Bulldogs after he announced the move on Friday afternoon. Emerson tweeted:
Seth Emerson @SethWEmerson
Sony Michel, a five-star tailback recruit, announces his commitment for Georgia.4/26/2013, 8:51:34 PM
Verbal commitments are non-binding, but that won't stop Georgia from getting excited about Michel today.
Michel (5'11", 205 pounds) is listed as a 5-star RB on 247 Sports, currently the No. 46 player on 247's 2014 rankings, the No. 5 running back in his class and the No. 8 Floridian on the board. If you move to 247 Sports' composite rankings, he slides up to No. 11 overall with a remarkable 0.9927 score.
After tearing his ACL in September 2011 and missing all of his sophomore season, questions started to arise about what kind of player he would be like after his return. He answered those concerns and more, cementing his status as a top prospect after rushing for 1,264 yards, adding another 232 receiving yards and compiling 18 total touchdowns.
Operating out of a multiple offense at American Heritage, Michel shows outstanding vision, one-cut ability to get up the field quickly and breakaway speed that is evidenced by his 4.5 speed in the 40-yard dash.
The high school senior will have a chance to further impress his new coaching staff at Georgia during his senior season, but it's not as if he hasn't had plenty of opportunities to do so already.
Michel made national headlines when he ran for over 1,800 yards as an eighth-grader, earning first-team All-Broward County honors over Ethan Grant (quite a bit of irony with regards to that name and this piece)—the former TCU RB recruit (via Kipp Adams of ESPN Insider—subscription required).
He followed that up with a solid freshman season before missing his sophomore year with the ACL tear. Back in action in 2012, he proved why he was on the field as a middle schooler with an impressive campaign that put him firmly in 247's Top 20.
Michel also had offers from Notre Dame, Florida, Florida State and Miami (per 247 Sports) but chose Georgia over the lot. He'll bring a rare blend of speed and power to the Bulldogs offense, and it should be exciting to see what he does to impress the nation during his final high school season.