Want to attack every day with the latest Georgia football recruiting info? That’s what the Intel will bring at least five days a week. The rundown for Thursday calls for a summation of where things stand with Georgia’s biggest remaining target for 2018: 5-star cornerback Tyson Campbell.
It feels as if this is “Uncommitted 5-star Cornerback Week” when it comes to UGA recruiting.
That, in and of itself, is quite the rarity.
Georgia hasn’t signed a 5-star cornerback, per the 247Sports composite, since Branden Smith in 2009. The late Paul Oliver has been the program’s only other 5-star cornerback signee in the star-ranking era of modern prospect evaluation. That goes back to 2000.
DawgNation chronicled the thoughts of the nation’s No. 2 CB on Wednesday. That was San Diego 5-star Isaac Taylor-Stuart. Taylor-Stuart won all the match races at Nike’s The Opening last July. The California speedster rightfully can claim the title as the fastest elite prospect in the land.
Taylor-Stuart will officially visit UGA, but he isn’t (rightfully) seen as the legitimate target to join the class, compared to Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) 5-star Tyson Campbell.
Campbell, the nation’s No. 3 cornerback in 2018, has been to Georgia before. His contemporary on the West Coast has not. The Florida native had a very good visit to Georgia during the summer and that relationship has just gotten stronger.
Tyson Campbell has a pair of official visits set for both Alabama and Georgia right now. Miami is also a strong contender. (Sam Spiegelman/SEC Country)
That said, let’s reflect on both options for a second.
Campbell and Taylor-Stuart check off every box when it comes to the prototype corner for Mel Tucker’s defense. He has the length, size, physicality and tackling ability, as well as ludicrous speed. The best 100-meter times out there on Campbell range around 10.5 to 10.6 seconds.
This strikes me as an optimal time to point out there’s a sync right now between on-field achievement and recruiting excellence that the program has never enjoyed before.
Georgia has the chance to finish as the nation’s No. 1 team on the field. A hard-fought win against Alabama will secure that. The Bulldogs also already have the nation’s top-ranked recruiting classes in both 2018 and 2019. The present and future look very bright.
If either Campbell or Taylor-Stuart signs with Georgia, he would become the seventh prospect with a 5-star rating to join the 2018 class. To the best of my knowledge, that would be the new record for a program with 5-star signees in any one single recruiting cycle.
That’s the big picture. Now let’s check where things stand with Campbell. SEC Country’s Ben Wolk was shared an interview with Campbell for DawgNation from the U.S. Army All-American Bowl practices in Texas.
Tyson Campbell has official visits scheduled to Bama and UGA
Which schools are really in it for Campbell?
“Miami, Georgia, Bama, Clemson and Ohio State,” Campbell told Wolk.
Campbell has set up official visits to UGA (Jan. 12) and Alabama (Jan. 19) but doesn’t think he will have the time to visit all five of those options. He’s not even sure if he will take an official visit to Miami.
Campbell did not articulate this point, but the hunch here is if those two visits do not check off what he is looking for, then he will schedule additional visits.
If not, then he will have his answer. He also said he wasn’t locked into making his decision on the traditional National Signing Day on Feb. 7.
American Heritage (Fla.) 5-star Tyson Campbell rates as the nation’s No. 3 cornerback prospect for 2018. (Sam Spiegelman/SEC Country)
“If not before signing day then on signing day,” he said.
Georgia coach Kirby Smart got in touch with Campbell earlier this week. He wished him good luck at the Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio.
It should be noted that event has nine UGA signees on hand.
What will Campbell be looking for on that Jan. 12 visit?
“How I connect with the players,” Campbell said, adding he doesn’t really know the players at UGA all that well at this point.
He said that bond with the players would be a crucial aspect of that visit.
“Those are the guys I will be seeing for the next three or four years,” he said.
The nation’s No. 27 overall prospect said he also doesn’t really feel comfortable yet with the players at Alabama either. That will also be a priority for his visit to Tuscaloosa on Jan. 19.
The Kirby Smart factor with Tyson Campbell
“We have a good relationship,” Campbell told Wolk. “We talk a lot.”
That’s how Campbell summed up his relationship with Georgia coach Kirby Smart.
Smart has let him know how much he is needed and wanted, Campbell said.
Tyson Campbell ranks as the nation’s No. 3 cornerback prospect for the 2018 cycle by the 247Sports composite. (Sam Spiegelman/SEC Country)
“[He tells me] I’m a big-time player and that they really want me,” he said.
Campbell meshes well with all of his options because he sees that most of them do not have a lot of depth at his position.
Does location serve as a big attraction to stay in South Florida and play with Miami? Campbell downplayed that.
“It doesn’t mean that much,” Campbell said. “Some players, it may not be the best for them to stay home. If I stay home that will be good for family to see me, but it may be best for me to just go out to other places to see how college life is.”
He didn’t indicate that Miami is the school he is the most familiar with, and he added he knows a few of the players on the roster at both Alabama and Clemson.
The 6-foot-2½, 185-pound prospect said he wasn’t sure about the timeline to take official visits to Clemson and Ohio State because he has also been talking to Auburn and Tennessee. When new Tennessee coach Jeremy Pruitt was the coordinator at Alabama, he was the main point of contact with Campbell.
That leads an observer to surmise the relationship with Alabama hasn’t improved since his primary recruiter no longer is there.
It seems he left the major research and fact finding for his decision in January. That was the recruiting timeline that made the most sense to him.
Campbell wanted to place the focus on his senior season and his high school team first. Patrick Surtain, the nation’s No. 1 cornerback for 2018, manned the other cornerback spot for American Heritage. That 5-star tandem started for three seasons at the school.
It was quite a feat for one school to pair up two of the nation’s top 3 cornerbacks in their defense. Needless to say, that allowed the Patriots to launch multiple bandits toward the opposing backfield. Campbell and Surtain more than held their own in man coverage.
On the recruiting front, Campbell said he didn’t feel that this month would be all that stressful. The fact that he reduced the scope of his decision to just a few teams has streamlined his approach.
Miss any Intel? The DawgNation recruiting archive will get you up to speed just as fast as Georgia All-American LB Roquan Smith can find the football after the snap.