Avon (Ind.) High five-star defensive end Elijah Daniel committed to Ole Miss on Sunday, shortly after arriving home from his official visit to Arizona State.
Daniel gives the Rebels three five-star commits in the class-of-2013.
The 6-foot-4, 250-pound Daniel also considered Mississippi State.
“I felt like it was the right place for me,” Daniel said. “I wanted to play in the SEC. I feel they’re on the rise and I see big things for them in the future. I want to be a part of that.”
Daniel becomes the 23rd commit for the Rebels in the class-of-2013 and the third five-star, joining JUCO defensive tackle Lavon Hooks and receiver Laquon Treadwell. He said he spoke with head coach Hugh Freeze about his pledge.
“I wanted to make the class stronger,” Daniel said. “I had a connection with the head coach and the rest of the coaching staff. Just everything.”
Daniel is ranked by 247Sports as the nation’s No. 3 strong-side defensive end and No. 27 prospect overall. He capped his prep career as an Under Armour All-American.
“Obviously he has the physical tools to step in and play immediately,” Avon High head coach Mark Bless said. “His strength, height and weight attributes to him being able to play as a true freshman. Speed and quickness are two of his biggest assets. Coming off the football, that is one of the things we noticed immediately is his take off, off the ball. When he’s in a three-point stance and pops off the ball, that is something that has caught the eye of the college coaches.
As a senior, Daniel registered 85 tackles including 16 stops for loss and five sacks.
“One thing that we noticed is that he tried to improve his knowledge of the game more than anything,” Bless said. “Besides his physical stature, this year he tried to improve in the area of football knowledge.”
Besides the schools mentioned, Daniel also had offers from the likes of Arizona, Clemson, Florida State, Georgia, Miami, Michigan, Michigan State, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas A&M and West Virginia.
Ole Miss doesn't appear to be done landing five-stars in this recruiting class. The nation's top prospect overall in defensive lineman Robert Nkemdiche and safety Tony Conner both have the Rebels high on their list as well.
Daniel took his official visit to Ole Miss the weekend of Nov. 23. He also made it to Oxford back in the spring.