football

Canes, Hokies, Vols lead for DE

Merritt Island (Fla.) defensive end Mike Mangold keeps adding to an impressive list of scholarship offers heading into his senior season.
Mangold (6-3, 250, 4.65) has added verbal offers from Miami and Georgia to go along with official written offers from Florida, Nebraska, Virginia Tech, Pittsburgh, Tennessee and UConn.
He gave an early commitment to Pitt this spring, but has since backed away from that verbal to investigate all of his options… and they’re growing.
“All of those are great schools,” he said. “I’m really excited about all the attention I’ve been getting. There are probably three right now that stand out the most – Virginia Tech, Tennessee and Miami.
“My uncle is an AD at Virginia Tech, so that’s a big part of my interest there. That, and the fact that they have a great program. Tennessee is a great program, too, with 100,000 screaming fans at every game. I can’t imagine what it’s like to play there in that huge stadium. Miami speaks for itself. It’s a championship program, and I’ve really enjoyed getting to know coach Coker.”
In an earlier Rivals.com update, Mangold said he'd likely commit to Miami if an official offer developed, so that situation merrits close attention.
Mangold says he’s eager to start making some unofficial visits this fall. He plans to attend the Florida-Miami game on Sept. 6. He’ll also try to make trips to Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Kansas State, Pitt and South Florida if time permits.
USF seems like an peculiar choice alongside the traditional heavy hitters, but the Bulls have an up-and-coming program and a coaching staff that has grabbed Mangold’s attention.
“They’re already pretty good, and I think they’re going to be great before too long,” he said. “They’ve got real good coaches, especially coach Leavitt. Plus, I have some close friends that play there. There’s just a lot of positive things to consider. It’s worth taking a look. I’m definitely serious about them.”
Mangold is rated the No. 17 weakside defensive end in the nation by Rivals.com. As a junior, he recorded 95 tackles, 25 tackles for loss and 10 sacks to earn third-team Class 6A all-state honors at John I. Leonard in Lake Worth (Fla.).
He moved back to Merritt Island, where he grew up, this summer. His new squad is expected to be one of the top teams in Class 4A.
Merritt Island plays a preseason game on Friday against Seminole.
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