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Former Vanderbilt commit Lamont Atkins picks Virginia football over Northwestern, Maryland

Momentum keeps Hoos recruiting rolling with addition of three-star running back

Student Sports

It's been a good week to be a member of Bronco Mendenhall's staff. In the last eight days, Virginia has picked up three commitments, including a quarterback with offers from PAC-12 and SEC powerhouses. That hot streak continued today, with Virginia adding Lake Braddock's Lamont Atkins to the fold.

Atkins is a 5'11, 200 pound all-purpose back from Burke, Virginia. He's rated three stars by 247Sports and Rivals, which both have him in the top 50 recruits in the Commonwealth for 2017. 247Sports also pegs him as a top-20 all-purpose back nationally. He was one of the top performers at the DC regional camp for The Opening.

Back in November, Atkins initially committed to Vanderbilt but he reopened his recruiting search in March. The second wave of recruiting came down to a battle between UVA and Northwestern. As proof of his academic strength, Atkins also held offers from Navy, Harvard, and Yale.

Just about every scouting report includes the word "shifty," and that holds true watching Atkins's tape. Another word that fits is "patient," as Atkins confidently lets his blockers get to their assignments before zipping into a gap. He displays good hands and fairly crisp route-running in the passing game, and isn't shy about taking on contact. Odds are he won't be playing the "big back" role in Mendenhall and Anae's offense, but he could make for a very solid tailback or slot back.