UVa Football Lands Top Recruit Mizzell

The stars aligned for the Virginia football program on Tuesday afternoon -- all five of them.

Virginia Beach running back Taquan "Smoke" Mizzell announced his verbal commitment to the Cavaliers at a ceremony at Bayside High School on Tuesday. Mizzell chose Virginia over West Virginia and North Carolina.

Earlier this week Rivals.com upgraded Mizzell to a five-star recruit, making him one of the top college football prospects in the country. Mizzell is the first five-star prospect to pick Virginia since offensive lineman Eugene Monroe in 2005.

Scout.com and 247Sports.com both regard Mizzell as a four-star recruit. Rivals rates Mizzell as the fourth-best player in the state, while 247Sports ranks him fifth in the class of 2013.

Mizzell is the most highly-regarded recruit of the Mike London era at Virginia.

By NCAA rules, coaches aren't allowed to comment on recruits until the players' letter of intent has arrived on National Signing Day. But before practice on Tuesday -- about two hours after Mizzell's announcement -- London did talk about the importance of keeping Virginia's best players in-state.

"We're happy that, you know, that Virginia has an opportunity to land some of these young men," London said. "I believe in a great education, I believe in this school, and I believe in the opportunity to recruit some of the best players in the country."

Mizzell is the 18th player to commit to Virginia's recruiting class of 2013.

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