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Cornerback Tyson Campbell is one of the fastest high school players in the nation.

5-star Georgia target Tyson Campbell breaks down Signing Day decision

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 topic for Tuesday is the biggest remaining target in the 2018 class for Georgia: 5-star cornerback Tyson Campbell. We’ll take a lap around that decision with fresh quotes and also share a quick update on another UGA puzzle piece for this class: 3-star DT commit Jordan Davis


Tyson Campbell is big. The 6-foot-2½ cornerback has elite size and speed for his position.

He’s the biggest puzzle piece left for Georgia as it seeks to land its first 5-star cornerback prospect since 2009 and also nail down the nation’s top-rated recruiting class for 2018. 

He started his high school career at American Heritage (Plantation, Fla.) as a receiver but quickly got on the field as a safety. That’s because he had to wait for his reps on a squad that had three future SEC defensive backs.

Tyson Campbell-Georgia recruiting-Tyson Campbell-Class of 2018-Alabama
Tyson Campbell, a 5-star cornerback, is the highest-ranked UGA signing target left in the Class of 2018. (Sam Spiegelman/SEC Country)

Campbell is the nation’s No. 2 prospect at his position and also rates at No. 12 overall on the final 247Sports composite rankings. Patrick Surtain Jr., his 5-star cornerback partner at American Heritage, ranks as the nation’s top cornerback and at No. 6 overall.

Those two are scheduled to announce their decisions in a ceremony from their school Wednesday, which ESPNU will televise live. Campbell and Surtain are two of the three highest-rated uncommitted prospects making a decision this week. Nicholas Petit-Frere, a guard from Tampa, Fla., is the No. 7-rated player on the 247Sports composite.

Where will Campbell wind up? It seems clear that his decision is down to Alabama, Georgia and Miami. He visited each of those schools, plus Tennessee, during his official visits this month.

He recognizes the difference between the schools. Georgia translates to comfort and fit. Miami is all about location. If he chooses Alabama, it would be because of that program’s vast tradition under Nick Saban.

Campbell spoke with Miami DieHards staff writer David Wilson on Monday regarding his decision.

Why Alabama: “The people Coach Saban puts in the league and the winning culture that they have at the school.”

Why Georgia: “It’s a place that I saw myself playing at. And I’d have an opportunity to come in and work hard, and earn the starting job.”

Why Miami: “Just the opportunity to be at home. Just knowing the coaching staff and the future they can have.”

Campbell said he planned to make his decision  Monday night or Tuesday morning. The depth charts at each those schools will not weigh heavily on his mind.

“I’m not scared of competition, so it’s whatever,” Campbell said.

Former Georgia running back Sony Michel has given him the lowdown on what he would expect in Athens.  That’s a topic DawgNation explored when Campbell was at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in Texas.

“He talks to me from time to time,” Campbell said in regard to Michel. “Telling me to go there.”

And the staff’s final message?

“Go to Georgia,” was his reply when asked about the staff’s final message. “You see what they’re doing. You see winning. Stuff like that.”

How does Tyson Campbell compare Alabama and Georgia?

Alabama initially was appealing because it is the storied powerhouse. It also needs to replace the six defensive backs it is losing off the 2017 roster.

That note in the plus column for Alabama has been offset by significant staff attrition. Alabama lost a pair of its strongest ties to Campbell in former coordinator Jeremy Pruitt and former defensive backs coach Derrick Ansley.

“I was the closest with Coach Ansley and he knew the defensive system,” Campbell said. “I don’t know if [new defensive backs] coach [Karl] Scott knows defense like that, but we’re cool now.”

Tyson Campbell-UGA recruiting
Five-star prospect Tyson Campbell is rated as the nation’s No. 2 cornerback for 2018. (Sam Spiegelman/SEC Country)

When asked to compare the two SEC programs, he found it hard to do so. That’s why Alabama lurks as a potential upset pick regarding the decision.

“At both visits I was comfortable and I had fun with the players, and those are both places I can just see myself at,” he said. “So really I couldn’t tell you the difference.”

Miami was his final official visit over the weekend. It may or may not be a clue that he focused on football on that trip.

“I only really saw the football stuff,” Campbell said. “So I got a chance to see that and just like hang out with the new guys in the freshman class. I had conversations with them.”

Former American Heritage coach Mike Rumph coaches the cornerbacks for Miami. But Campbell said he didn’t see that as a major draw.

“I don’t go to school for a coach,” he said. “You want to get developed, but that shouldn’t be a factor because coaches leave. It’s a business.”

That’s also a consideration in how he regards the appeal of staying home to play for the Hurricanes.

“Playing for your hometown,” Campbell said. “But just make the right decision for you.”

A little piece of news on the Jordan Davis front

Jordan Davis, a 3-star defensive tackle commit in this class, told DawgNation this morning he remains all UGA.

“Of course,” Davis said. “Never changed.”

His signing ceremony on Wednesday will take place at Mallard Creek High in Charlotte, N.C. It will begin at approximately 9 a.m. ET, and that sets up the day for the Bulldogs.

Davis’ first offer came from North Carolina and coach Tray Scott, who is now Georgia’s defensive line coach but was with the Tar Heels at that time. The relationship between them has grown since.

Davis projects to be a nose tackle in the John Atkins mold in Athens. But he also logged a lot of time at offensive tackle during his senior season at Mallard Creek. He ranks as the nation’s No. 29 DT and the No. 422 overall prospect for 2018.

He is 6-foot-6 inches and weighs 325 pounds.

Here’s the revised timeline of National Signing Day decisions Georgia fans will be watching. DawgNation will have you covered throughout the day Wednesday as the Bulldogs try to nail down possibly their best class ever:

  • 9 a.m.: 3-star defensive tackle Jordan Davis (Mallard Creek/Charlotte, N.C.)
  • 10 a.m.: 5-star cornerback Tyson Campbell (American Heritage/Plantation, Fla.)
  • 10 a.m.: 4-star linebacker Otis Reese (Lee County/Leesburg, Ga.)
  • 10:30 a.m.: 3-star defensive tackle Tramel Walthour (Liberty County/Hinesville, Ga.)
  • 11 a.m.: 4-star linebacker Quay Walker (Crisp County/Cordele, Ga.)
  • 11:35-11:45 a.m.: 4-star wide receiver Tommy Bush (Samuel Clemens, Schertz, Texas)
  • Noon: 4-star junior tight end Ryland Goede (Kennesaw Mountain/Kennesaw, Ga.); Goede is a 2019 recruit who is making his commitment announcement.
  • 2:30 p.m.: 4-star defensive tackle Rick Sandidge (Concord/Concord, N.C.)
  • TBA: 4-star wide receiver Antoine Green (Rockledge/Rockledge, Fla.).

Miss any Intel? The DawgNation recruiting archive will get you up to speed just as fast as former Georgia All-America linebacker Roquan Smith found the ball after the snap.

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