Sony Michel of Plantation, Fla., is a 5-foot-11, 194-pound star running back who already has been timed in the 40-yard dash at a blazing 4.46 seconds. Michel is listed at the No. 5-overall player for the class of 2014, according to Rivals.com. Thus, he has garnered scholarship offers from seemingly everyone under the sun. This in spite of the fact that his high school career is still far from over.
That said, national powerhouse football programs are not the only ones looking ahead towards the 2014 recruiting cycle. Michel is as well, and he has reportedly already narrowed his list of schools down to a top five.
“…he’s narrowed things down to five lucky schools and says that top five ‘won’t change,'” Gary Ferman of CaneSports.com wrote. “It’s a race between Miami, Florida State, Florida, Georgia and Notre Dame.”
All of the usual suspects are here. The three big-time, in-state schools have that built-in advantage of being his home state and close to his family. The recruiting proximity is one that FSU’s Jimbo Fisher, The U’s Al Golden and Florida’s Will Muschamp have all capitalized upon during their respective tenures.
However, one of the three is going to have to differentiate itself from not only their Sunshine State rivals, but Georgia and Notre Dame as well.
Michel has stated that he is going to make his commitment prior to the opening weekend of his high school season, so whoever hopes to land him better separate from the pack quickly.
“I know I will commit before my senior year,” Michel told Chad Simmons of Scout.com. “It may be this spring or it may be in the summer, but I know I will get it out of the way so I do not have any distractions during the season. I want to focus on the team and the season, so I will put recruiting behind me in the next few months.”
Michel has been on the recruiting radar since he was 14. Florida State reportedly enjoyed an early advantage for the player’s services, but after losing running backs coach Eddie Gran, the Noles have considerable ground to make up and not very much time to do so.
In fact, when prompted, Michel elaborated on the five schools listed. He talked about who his two favorites are right now, and why.
“‘I feel like I have the best relationships with the staffs at Miami and Georgia,’ Michel said. ‘Outside of football, the Miami coaches are all great people and from what I have seen they are guys you can talk to about anything. With Georgia, their coaches have sold me on the success they have had outside of football. It is like one big family there and I have a great relationship with all of the coaches.'”
Before these coaches know it, one will have the services of one of the nation’s top running backs locked up for the next three-to-four years, while the rest will be left to make more phone calls and send more text messages.