GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Just looking at Allen Bailey one knows right away that the Darien, Ga., linebacker who stars at McIntosh County Academy is a top football prospect.
However, it gets better when the 6-foot-3, 252-pounder gets out there on the field. Working out with linebackers this past weekend at the NIKE Training Camp in Gainesville, Bailey definitely opened some eyes and showed everyone why he was one of the nation's top defensive prospects.
"I did pretty good, man, and it was better than last year when I went down to Athens," Bailey said. "This one, my recovery speed matching up against the running backs and tight ends was a lot better. My group also had some good linebackers in it."
Though he prefers linebacker, many schools have either recruited him as a defensive end or told him he'll get a look without his hand down. Those that said they would recruit him primarily as a defensive end exited early from the race.
"I've turned a few down that wanted me to play defensive end or a hybrid, bandit position," Bailey said. "Miami, Georgia, Florida, and Alabama are my top schools, though, right now. They all said that I could play linebacker or start there, and they're close to home."
Bailey says that one of those schools, Miami, leads the others. Nonetheless, he'll take all of his trips and make a late decision.
"I want to take all five of my visits in the fall and I've still got some to take this summer," Bailey said. "We have a passing league thing in Alabama, so I'm going to hop over to see Auburn and Alabama this summer."
"I'll decide right before basketball and after the football season this fall. I've already been to a lot of schools in March. I'm just going to keep seeing schools."
The testing showed people why he was so deserving of the national interest. Bailey says that his 31-inch vertical, 24 reps on the bench press and 4.75-second shuttle were the highlights.
He'd still like to improve his 40-yard dash time before he gets to the next level.
"I could have done better there, but there was a lot of talent out here and you want to get better each time," he said. "I wanted to improve from last year and that's what I did."
"I just want to be all over the field. I'm everywhere out there and that's what I showed people."
Bailey also has offers from Clemson, Georgia Tech, and Ole Miss among others.