ATHENS — Herschel Walker's nephew has committed to one of UGA's rivals.
Milan Richard, a tight end from Savannah, picked Clemson over Georgia, Vanderbilt and Ole Miss.
“It feels great; it feels like a big relief,” Richard said. “I know (Clemson) is 100 percent committed to me, and I'm 100 percent committed to them. And it feels great.”
Richard had an early scholarship offer from UGA but passed on the opportunity to follow in his famous uncle's footsteps. The Bulldogs made it clear they intended to sign only one tight end this year and landed 4-star Jeb Blazevich of Charlotte last month. Richard was aware of Blazevich's pending commitment but simply wasn't ready to make his college decision.
With almost all recruiting analysts projecting Richard to Clemson after Blazevich's commitment, the only surprise Wednesday was the timing of his announcement. Earlier this week, Richard told the media that he would make his college decision June 4. However, the timeline may have been accelerated after two of his finalists, Clemson and Ole Miss, offered another Georgia tight end, Woodward Academy's Terry Googer, on Tuesday.
Richard smartly committed a month sooner than expected, and admitted Wednesday: “I wanted to secure my spot.”
Just like last year, Clemson is off to a fast and furious start in Georgia. The Tigers also have a commitment from the state's No. 1 overall prospect. Gainesville High School quarterback Deshaun Watson.
Richard and Watson are close friends. Did that impact Richard's decision?
“It didn't play that big of a role,” he said. “We're good friends. I think I said a long time ago, if it worked out where we ended up at the same school, then it was going to be because it was just the best decision for both of us. It wasn't, 'Hey, let's do this together.' But it just worked out and we ended up both committing (to Clemson).”
Some UGA fans feel like it would be bad karma if Herschel's family member signed anywhere but with the Bulldogs.
After Blazevich committed, Richard's coach said that was he contacted by Bulldogs assistant who said they would "actively recruit" Richard but couldn't promise a scholarship offer at the time. On Wednesday, Richard said he hasn't had any recent contact with UGA.
But what if UGA makes a late offer? Both Richard and his coach said he's committed to Clemson and won't be visiting other colleges. He's finished with recruiting.
“Georgia was great throughout this whole process,” Richard’s high school coach Mark Stroud said. “They did nothing wrong.”
Clemson could add another Georgia prospect next month with Sandy Creek wide receiver Demarre Kitt, the ex-UGA commit.