Clermont East Ridge linebacker Brian Mills has committed to Iowa State's 2013 recruiting class, according to East Ridge assistant coach Scott Armatti.
Mills, 5-foot-11, 190 pounds and a bit undersized for linebacker at the next level, will likely play safety for the Cyclones. He has been omnipresent in the Knights program since his freshman year, and has been a four-year starter for coach Bud O'Hara.
The veteran coach has often said Mills is one of the hardest working players he has ever had, and he's has some good ones, including current NFL players DB Chimdi Chekwa of the Oakland Raiders and LB Greg Lloyd of the Indianapolis Colts.
Mills has 12 tackles in the first two games for the Knights, including a nine-tackle performance in the opener against Hernando.
As a sophomore, he averaged 7.5 tackles per game. Last season, Mills averaged six tackles a game for the 9-4 state Class 7A quarterfinalists and had 5.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
Mills, who is ranked No. 51 in the Sentinel's 2013 Central Florida Super60, picked the Cyclones over an offer from the Naval Academy, a difficult choice considering the deep military past in his family. In the end, however, the lure of the Big 12 was enough to swing Mills.
He joins several other Orlando area players already taking up residence in Ames, Iowa, including fellow Lake County product WR P.J. Harris, who is red-shirting his freshman season with fellow first-year player OL Duaron Williams of Orlando Jones.
Central Florida products already making their mark on the field as starters for the Cyclones are redshirt juniors DE Willie Scott (Orlando Jones) and DB Jansen Watson (Kissimmee Osceola), while junior RB Shontrelle Johnson (DeLand), listed as No. 2 on the depth chart, is the Cyclones' leading rusher after two games.
Also on the depth chart as the No. 3 quarterback is former Winter Park standout Sam Richardson.
Chris Hays is the Sentinel's recruiting coverage coordinator and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on Twitter at @Os_Recruiting and Facebook at Orlando Sentinel Recruiting and now on Pinterest at Orlando Recruiting.