-- After considering 30 offers from colleges all over for the country over the past two years, ESPN 300 running back Elijah Holyfield has decided to stay home and attend Georgia, he announced Friday.
Holyfield, the son of former heavyweight boxing champ Evander Holyfield, committed to the Bulldogs over Auburn, Tennessee, Alabama and South Carolina.
The younger Holyfield, at 5 feet 11, 204 pounds, rushed for 1,735 yards and scored 28 touchdowns for Woodward Academy outside of Atlanta -- the site of Friday's announcement -- last season.
Early in the recruiting process, Holyfield had Big Ten programs, including Michigan, Michigan State and Wisconsin, and ACC programs vying more strongly for his services than the closer-to-home, top-tier programs of the SEC. The exception in that regard was Tennessee, the first of Holyfield's five finalists to offer, in May 2014.
Holyfield was not shy about discussing his fondness for the home-state Bulldogs throughout the process. Although Georgia verbally offered Holyfield in September 2014, it wasn't until the spring of 2015 that the program made the running back a priority. Holyfield subsequently made a handful of visits to Athens, including a trip July 18, which was followed with an announcement of his final five the following week.
Holyfield becomes the ninth ESPN 300 commitment for the Bulldogs, which had the No. 9-ranked recruiting class before his verbal commitment. The group also features No. 3-ranked pocket passer Jacob Eason and No. 9-ranked defensive tackle Julian Rochester.
Georgia now has commitments from six of the top 20 prospects in the state, with a number of prospects still on the board. Top remaining in-state targets include DT Derrick Brown (No. 17 in the ESPN 300), DT Antwuan Jackson Jr. (No. 34), athlete Mecole Hardman (No. 30), WR Kyle Davis (No. 31) and WR Demetris Robertson (No. 82).
Several top national prospects outside the Peach State are also considering the Bulldogs, including five-star DT Rashan Gary (No. 1), TE Isaac Nauta (No. 10) and four-star corner Shyheim Carter (No. 41).