(*Editor's note...What the heck does "Commitment to Eight" mean? It is our new recurring title for recruit commitments referencing a commitment to work towards the Gopher's Eighth National Championship.)
The Staff kicked off Spring Game Weekend with a huge verbal commitment from their top WR target. Jornell Manns III arrived on campus yesterday and quickly gave his verbal pledge to Row the Boat with Coach Fleck.
The kid had a very nice early offer list and came to the Twin Cities directly following an unofficial visit in Madison on Tuesday. But Manns continued his journey north and quickly pulled the trigger on the Gopher offer.
First Of All I Want To Thank God! Im Blessed To Say I Have Committed To Minnesota! R.T.B!! @GopherFootball @GopherSports pic.twitter.com/EMsvlhJB6c— Jornell Manns II (@iam_jmxi) April 14, 2017
Ryan Burns of GopherIllustrated ($cout).
Bill Greene’s analysis of Manns
He is very strong in his upper body, and can shield defenders from the football. He is also a heck of a safety for his team, although I expect him to play wide receiver for Minnesota. His head coach, Chioke Bradley, raves about Manns' practice habits and his leadership skills. Manns is a very serious kid, and he is all about handling his business. I believe he is talented enough to play early for the Gophers.
Height: 5' 11"
Weight: 186 lbs.
Big 4 Ratings:
Power 5 Offers - Wisconsin, Penn State, West Virginia, Kentucky
- Scout - 3 stars
- Rivals - 3 stars (5.6 rating)
- 247 - 3 stars (88 rating)
- ESPN - n/a
Junior year highlights:
In Two Words - if you have to remember just two things about this player...
Having trouble recalling a great Gopher slot receiver that would be appropriate comparison. I love what I’m reading about Manns that he works incredibly hard on and off the field to be an elite player. The Bill Greene breakdown article compares Manns to Randal Cobb in high school, I’ll take that.
Strong kid who uses his body well and should be an ideal fit out of the slot for the Gophers. Also worth noting that Manns is a good return man and should see the field early in this capacity.
Also worth noting that Manns is a very good bowler.
Impact on Other Prospects?
There is a pretty good chance that the staff is done at WR already. There are currently 5 freshmen receivers on the roster (Van Dyne, Douglas, Autman-Bell, plus redshirt freshmen Hmielewski and Howard) with Register and Johnson as sophomores. So the position is fairly young and taking just 2 in this class may be likely. As is always the case, if the right guys comes along they won’t turn him away.