‘RBU’ reload? Why 5-star junior Kendall Milton is still a major UGA target
Want to attack every day with the latest UGA football recruiting info? That’s what the Intel brings at least four days a week. The play sheet today calls for a chance to recap a very recent conversation with 5-star California junior RB target Kendall Milton.
Georgia did not sign 5-star RB target Trey Sanders in the 2019 cycle. He was the nation’s No. 1 RB target for that class.
When that happens to an elite program, the short-term depth chart loss can equate to a long-term gain. The loss of Sanders now means the Bulldog depth chart will get far more “likes” from the 5-star RBs in the 2020 class.
The opinion here is those options do not get any better than California 5-star Kendall Milton.
The Buchanan High (Clovis, Calif.) standout rates as the nation’s No. 2 RB and No. 11 overall recruit for the 2020 class on the 247Sports composite ratings.
“One thing that I like to look at is how the depth charts are and how deep in running backs they are,” Milton said. “At some schools, they will recruit me but have an eight-running back-backfield which will kind of limit the playing time. But with schools like Georgia, you can see where they are going to be in a situation where they are short on running backs. It is a great situation to come into and be able to take a spot.”
It is easy to say that Milton checks every box for the Bulldogs. UGA is basically already recruiting him with major resources on a daily basis despite his status as a 2020 recruit.
That’s how an SEC program like the Bulldogs can position itself to pull an elite RB prospect all the way across the country from California.
What does he like best about the opportunity to play for Georgia?
“I would say the relationships and just like the talks that I have with the coaching staff,” Milton said. “I just feel like they know what they are doing 100 percent from talks with coach [Dell] McGee and coach [Kirby] Smart and coach [Nick] Williams. It is just like a family atmosphere and that’s something that is big to me.”
Milton shared some comments on Twitter in the wake of the Justin Fields news at UGA. He said he was just sharing his opinion on that transfer and how he could have helped the Bulldogs. The move by Fields will not affect his decision, he said.
“It doesn’t really affect the way I feel about Georgia,” Milton said. “It doesn’t really affect me in a way now so I am just going to keep building my relationships with the coaching staff, go on my visits, see what happens and at the end of the day see what is best for me.”
There have been some recent cases with 5-star prospects who feel the bread-and-butter of the UGA offense isn’t a perfect fit for their talents.
That’s not the case for a 5-star RB prospect who wants to be developed in an offense that showcases the running back position.
“They really involve the running backs in the passing game [at Georgia] so going into the draft those [teams] would be more open to potentially drafting you because you are more of that all-around back,” Milton said. “Georgia creates those all-around backs so that’s something I look towards in the future from a marketability aspect.”
He labeled his connection with McGee “as a pretty solid relationship” going forward.
“I talk to him basically every day and he’s a really good guy,” Milton said.
The same can be said of Kirby Smart. It is highly interesting to find out just much attention McGee and Smart pay Milton. That makes him a clear priority for the 2020 class.
“I talk to him basically every other day on the phone and Facetime and all that,” Milton said on how often he hears from Smart.
A few quick timeline issues to cover with Kendall Milton
He had been planning a January unofficial visit to UGA. That was set to be his first visit, but he has a new plan in mind.
“I’m not planning to visit in January but now in April,” he said. “That’s when everything kind of settles down. That’s when it will be like the easiest time period. I will definitely visit Georgia by the end of this school year.”
Spring officials are now a thing, but that one will be set up to be an unofficial visit.
“I’ve decided I want to be able to take my officials during the season so I can see the atmosphere and all that,” Milton said. “That’s one thing that I want to emphasize.”
He has another new time frame in mind, too.
“I’ve decided to push my commitment back to the early signing period,” he said. “I will be able to play it out through the whole season and see what happens.”
If that holds, the first day of the 2019 early signing period for 2020 prospects will be his commitment day.
The 6-foot-2, 210-pound junior also plans to enroll early. He realizes how hard it will be to go all the way to mid-December to share his college choice.
“I think it will be hard but I’m just going to sit back,” he said. “So at the end of the day, I will be able to know what is best for me and what is best for my family. I am just going to play it by ear and see what happens.”
Package deal for 5-stars Zachary Evans and Kendall Milton?
Zachary Evans rates as the nation’s No. 1 RB for 2020 per the 247Sports composite ratings. Milton checks in at No. 2 on those ratings.
As outlandish as it may seem, those two do discuss playing together. That will be an item to monitor, but the Bulldogs might have one of the few depth charts and program profiles that can accommodate a pair of 5-star backs.
They have even tweeted about it.
“We’ve been talking a little bit about it and at the end of the day it just comes down to what fits us best,” Milton said. “We could both have different opportunities that are better for one of us independent of the other. So we will just play it out and whatever happens, will just happen.”
Milton and 5-star CB Elias Ricks are both in California. Ricks, the nation’s No. 1 CB prospect for 2020, committed to LSU on Dec. 25. That was another potential 5-star tandem he was linked to.
“We’ve always had the thought it would be fun to play with your homey,” Milton said. “To play with someone you grew up with. But at the end of the day with that, it is like what I said before. We both could have opportunities that are better for one another instead of the both of us. What is best for Elias might not be what is best for me.”
Case in point: LSU signed two elite RB talents in the class of 2019, including 5-star RB John Emery Jr.
“It just depends for me about how I get along with the coaches and how I feel and how I fit in when I get on campus and all that,” Milton said.
— KENDALL MILTON² (@therealkmilt) November 18, 2018
What are the odds Kendall Milton winds up in the SEC?
Kendall Milton shared his top 10 back in July. He said this week that there has already been some movement in that group.
TOP 10 pic.twitter.com/xAhBVT19IX
— KENDALL MILTON² (@therealkmilt) July 9, 2018
He had condensed those options down to a top 9 grouping. His updated top school list looks like (in no order): Alabama, Fresno State, Georgia, LSU, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas and USC.
That now reads like a 33 percent chance he winds up in the SEC. At the very least.
“Georgia is definitely in that top 9 list,” he said.
Look for the next breakdown of his top schools to just be his official visit list. He will likely leave it at that. It does sound like the Bulldogs have a strong shot at getting one of those officials, too.
“It is a pretty strong probability because like I said about those relationships with the coaches and going on my unofficial I plan for it to be a very good one that will make me want to come back to Athens.”
Does he think he could wind up playing his college ball in the SEC?
“It is a pretty big shot,” Milton said. “Three schools that are some of my top schools are LSU, Georgia and Alabama. Those are schools that are known for producing running backs and are known for getting them to the next level. So you know it is a big chance.”
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