• Kirby Smart's embarrassment of recruiting riches in Athens continues with a high-ceiling defensive back, the Bulldogs' seventh five-star.
By Chris Johnson
February 07, 2018

Moments before top uncommitted prospect Patrick Surtain Jr. picked Alabama on Wednesday morning, his teammate and defensive secondary partner at American Heritage (Fla.) High School made his own call. Tyson Campbell, who entered National Signing Day as the No. 12 overall prospect in the country, chose Georgia over Alabama, Clemson, Miami and Ohio State.

As unlikely as this may seem based on his ranking, Campbell isn’t the most highly regarded cornerback on his high school team. Surtain sits one spot above him in the 247Sports Composite cornerback rankings and two spots higher in its Florida state rankings. Over the last two seasons, Campbell has helped American Heritage go 27–0 and win two state titles while drawing scholarship offers from a long list of Power 5 heavyweights. Like Surtain, he was selected to participate in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio in January. “The instincts and the change-of-direction quickness along with the speed and length make Campbell a special prospect,” 247Sports director of recruiting Steve Wiltfong wrote in early January.

The Bulldogs lost three key members of their secondary after 2017’s national title game run—safety Dominick Sanders and corners Aaron Davis and Malkom Parrish—but cornerback Deandre Baker’s decision to put off the pros for one more year should help stabilize the unit. Campbell should show up in Athens with an opportunity to play early and often. Campbell’s recruiting pedigree suggests earning early playing time wouldn’t have been an issue regardless of which program he had chosen.

Campbell’s commitment makes it seven five-stars in the Bulldogs’ 2018 recruiting class, which is in close competition with Ohio State and Alabama as this year’s top signing class.

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