Mike Campbell, a major South Carolina backer of Jon Huntsman -- and the former state chairman for Mike Huckabee's 2008 presidential campaign --will endorse Newt Gingrich Thursday in Charleston, S.C., Fox News has learned exclusively from GOP sources in the first-in-the-South primary state.

Campbell, the son of the late Gov. Carroll Campbell, a Palmetto State icon, was being heavily courted by several campaigns after Huntsman bowed out earlier this week.

Despite an overwhelmingly lackluster effort in South Carolina, Huntsman was considered to have one of the best teams in South Carolina, many of whom supported Huckabee in 2008.

However as S.C. GOP chairman Chad Connelly told Fox News earlier this week Huntsman's failed usage of this highly-respected state team was akin to "buying a brand new sportscar and leaving it in the garage."