2015 SD prepster heading to IMG

Nebraska checked in on South Dakota prepster Michael Daniel this spring, but now the running back will be taking his talents to the IMG Academy.

The South Dakota 2015 class appears to be a solid one, with multiple potential D-1 prospects - it's too bad they are losing a likely scholarship player.

Michael Daniel, a running back from Brookings, South Dakota, ran for nearly 1,000 yards last season on just 138 carries. His play has earned a scholarship at the IMG Academy in Florida, a prep school with a premiere football training facility.

"It will be hard, the hard part will be leaving my family, but I'm going down there chasing my dreams," Daniel, a Nebraska prospect, told Big Red Report on Monday night. "In the long run, it will help me be more successful going down there."

Daniel received a visit from Nebraska assistant coach Barney Cotton during the last week of the evaluation period. While the soon to junior won't be playing in the 500-mile radius in the future, it's likely the coaching staff will keep tabs on the former South Dakota prepster.

"My dad grew up in the Omaha area, so he is a Nebraska fan. He wants me to play there since it's close to him," said Daniel, who also knows Nate Gerry. "He's a man, that's for real. He's a crazy athlete and will give you 110 percent all the time.

"We played them in the second round of the playoffs, they killed us something like 48-0. We ran a sweep to the outside and I had a small receiver go out and try to make a block for me. Here comes Nate Gerry and the receiver literally stopped. Gerry had a free shot on me. I tried to give him a stiff arm, but it was way too late. He got me good."

Daniel says besides Nebraska, schools like Auburn, Florida, Kentucky, Cal, and West Virginia have all shown interest, but had their concerns.

"They are all interested in me, and love my film, but know it's going against South Dakota competition. I think that is holding them back on pulling the trigger of offering me," said Daniel. "I think once I get that first offer, I will just blow up from there.

"I want to play in the SEC since I'm a running back, but I'm not counting out the West Virginias, Nebraskas, or Wisconsins of the world. Obviously all those are great schools for running backs. I want a coaching staff that I can get a long with. I think you can really tell if you click with a coach. I want to also see how many years I will be sitting out, so the depth chart will be important."

Daniel is a bigger back for his age, standing at 6-foot and nearly 205-pounds.

"I can catch like a receiver. I put a lot of time into my routes, I think they are very important. I can catch the ball. I have speed – I just dropped down to a 4.5 forty. And I don't mind blocking," said Daniel. "I'm the all-around package if you ask me. I have a pretty high football IQ and really like doing everything."

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