Rivals Camp Series Charlotte: Five schools that should be pleased
FORT MILL, S.C. – The Rivals Camp Series presented by adidas stopped in the Carolinas over the weekend and some of the best prospects in the region competed in Sunday's Rivals 3 Stripe Camp presented by adidas. Players with offers from schools across the country showed up to put their talents on display. Here are five teams with the most buzz coming out of the camp on Sunday.
The Bulldogs have extended their reach north into the Carolinas plenty in recent years, with star players such as Todd Gurley among the many recruiting wins for the Dawgs over the years. On Sunday, Georgia was on the mind of several top performers at the event, including wide receiver MVP Nolan Groulx. The Wisconsin commit said the Dawgs have been in regular contact, and his connection with wide receivers coach Cortez Hankton is a reason why he still has an eye on UGA despite his commitment to the Badgers. Georgia hasn’t offered, but if it does it could be a situation to watch. Also of interest to Georgia fans was the performance of brothers Max and Jake Johnson. The Athens residents performed very well for underclassmen, with Jake nearly walking away with MVP honors despite not yet stepping foot on a high school campus. The nation’s No. 1 overall player, Quavaris Crouch, also mentioned the Dawgs when discussing his recruitment, and he said a visit is likely in the plans for the future.
The Vols had their spring game on Saturday and plenty of the prospects in attendance on Sunday were buzzing about Tennessee, headlined by Crouch, the nation’s No. 1 overall player. Tennessee is in Crouch’s top three and he said he’s developing quite a bond with the Vols coaches. Crouch’s interest in Tennessee is anything but casual, and it looks like the Vols will be a major player going forward. Three-star defensive back Shyheim Battle was on campus in Knoxville on Saturday and said he enjoyed the trip as well, and he showed no signs of road weariness while turning in a solid performance at the camp. New Vols coach Jeremy Pruitt has talked about the importance of recruiting North Carolina, and it appears he and his staff are doing a nice job keeping the school on the minds of the area’s top players.
Florida State is hitting its stride on the recruiting trail with Willie Taggart at the helm, and the 'Noles are set up well to have a very good haul out of the Mid-Atlantic. Quarterback Sam Howell committed to Florida State earlier this month and has been hard at work recruiting one of his closest friends: Quavaris Crouch. Howell brought Crouch with him to the Florida State spring game and that experience left its mark on him. Crouch listed Florida State among his current top three schools, along with Tennessee and South Carolina.
Also a good friend of Howell and Crouch, Rivals250 wide receiver Khafre Brown listed Florida State in his top six schools. The Seminoles are facing stiff competition from Tennessee, North Carolina, West Virginia, South Carolina and Michigan, but Florida State has a very good opportunity for Brown.
There were a lot of big Clemson targets at the camp on Sunday. The biggest target there was, of course, Crouch. His interest in the Tigers seems to change every couple of weeks, but expect them to remain in the conversation until his commitment.
Shyheim Battle and Anthony Harris, two 2019 defensive backs, are very high on Clemson. Battle listed the Tigers as his top school, tied with NC State, and he expects to take an official visit to Clemson before announcing his commitment. The Tigers are in the mix for Harris, but there is still a little ways to go in his recruitment.
Class of 2020 prospects Antoine Sampah and Porter Rooks are two underclassmen Clemson fans should keep be watching. Both are among the first 100 players in the 2020 class to get rated. Sampah has enjoyed his visits to Clemson and likes what he has heard from the coaching staff. Rooks has a number of connections to Clemson, but doesn't hold an offer just yet. That is expected to change down the road but, he is already an important Clemson target.
West Virginia reached into North Carolina early in the recruiting process and secured a commitment from four-star linebacker Lee Kpogba. He turned in an excellent performance on Sunday and was among the finalists for the linebacker MVP award. Virginia linebacker Dean Ferguson is a West Virginia target and he certainly stood out among the other linebackers. His size and speed were very impressive, and he has a big frame to fill out.
Rivalds250 wide receiver Khafre Brown has West Virginia in his top six and was adamant that he wants to visit Morgantown this summer. Brown is a big-time track athlete, and his speed could be a great fit in West Virginia's offense. Defensive back Cameron Smith claims interest in West Virginia as well, and he was one of the best defensive backs on Sunday. His length, instincts and ability to make plays on the ball gave wide receivers and quarterbacks fits.