Five-star cornerback Kendall Fuller ended the suspense surrounding which school he would attend next year with a simple unzipping of his jacket.
Fuller revealed a Virginia Tech T-shirt at the Gridiron Kings prospect event in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on Sunday, picking the Hokies over Clemson in what was the biggest get yet for Frank Beamer and his staff in the 2013 class.
“I just got that gut feeling,” said Fuller, who said he made his decision Thursday. “I loved both schools but at the end of the day you have to pick one.”
Fuller, who plays for Our Lady of Good Counsel in Olney, Md., is Rivals’ No. 3 player nationally and 247 Sports’ No. 12. The sites rank him as the No. 1 and 2 cornerback in the country, respectively, and the top recruit in Maryland.
He is the Hokies’ first five-star recruit since Hampton quarterback Tyrod Taylor signed in 2007 and the fourth since Rivals began giving out star rankings in 2002, joining Highland Springs cornerback Victor Harris in 2005 and Newport News quarterback Marcus Vick in 2002.
He is the highest-ranked player to commit to Virginia Tech since running back Kevin Jones, the top overall recruit in 2001.
Fuller is the fourth brother from his family who will play for Virginia Tech. Vincent was a safety from 2001-04 who played seven years in the NFL. Corey is a senior wide receiver who transferred to the Hokies after two years at Kansas. Kyle is a junior cornerback who is a preseason first-team All-ACC selection this season.
“Just watching them there over the years, watching them develop, [I’m] just trying to go in there and finish it up and show off for the Fuller brothers,” Kendall said on ESPN’s online broadcast.
The pull at Virginia Tech was apparently stronger than Clemson, where his Good Counsel teammate Dorian O’Daniel, a four-star linebacker recruit, committed earlier this year. Fuller visited Clemson last weekend after making the last of many trips to Virginia Tech for a one-day camp on July 14.
The 6-foot, 175-pound two-way star had three interceptions and 25½ tackles last year. He also caught 26 passes for 527 yards and five touchdowns.
Kevin Sherman and Torrian Gray were Fuller’s primary recruiters.
He is Virginia Tech’s 15th commitment for 2013. Commitments are non-binding until players send in their letters of intent next February.
Fuller adds to the Hokies’ defensive back haul, which includes Holland Fisher, a four-star safety prospect from Midlothian who has turned heads at recruiting camps and is being pursued by Alabama.
The other defensive backs in the class include Cequan Jefferson of Richmond, Anthony Shegog of Stafford, Brandon Facyson of Newnan, Ga., Charles Clark of Suffolk and potentially Deon Newsome from Hampton.
Here’s an updated commitment list for 2013:
- Kyle Chung, TE, 6-4, 255 Ponte Vedra, Fla. (Ponte Vedra)
- Charles Clark, DB, 5-11, 180, Suffolk (King’s Fork)
- Brandon Facyson, DB/WR, 6-2, 182 Newnan, Ga. (Northgate)
- Holland Fisher, DB, 6-2, 205, Midlothian (Manchester)
- Kendall Fuller, CB, 6-0, 175, Olney, Md. (Our Lady of Good Counsel)
- Bucky Hodges, QB, 6-5, 225, Virginia Beach (Salem)
- Cequan Jefferson, ATH, 5-11, 167, Richmond (Henrico)
- Jamieon Moss, LB, 6-1, 210, Elizabeth City, N.C. (Northeastern)
- Andrew Motu’apuaka, LB, 6-0, 210, Virginia Beach (Salem)
- Deon Newsome, ATH, 5-11, 170, Hampton (Hampton)
- Parker Osterloh, OL, 6-7, 268, Williamsburg (Warhill)
- Carlis Parker, QB/ATH, 6-4, 187, Statesville, N.C. (Statesville)
- Braxton Pfaff, OL, 6-5, 290, Lynchburg (Liberty Christian)
- David Prince, ATH, 6-0, 175, Roanoke (Patrick Henry)
- Anthony Shegog, DB, 6-2, 195, Stafford (North Stafford)