Running back Norman Whitley out of Rockingham (N.C.) Richmond County has received visits from a handful of schools during the evaluation period.
The 5-foot-11, 185-pounder was visited by North Carolina, Virginia, Clemson, Michigan State, East Carolina, Maryland and Duke. Did any one visit stand out from the others?
"They were all pretty much the same, just getting me familiar with their programs and trying to give me an idea of what they're about." he said.
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Whitley also spoke to some coaches by phone and saw one head coach walking through the halls of his school.
"I talked to coach Henry from Florida State and they'll be back soon. I'm not sure where they exactly stand. Maryland told me that they want to offer right now, but they've got to look at my transcripts and Chuck Amato visited, that was pretty big."
What does Whitley think of North Carolina State and Amato?
"I met coach Amato before and I've been to camp there," he said. "I know Toney Baker will be playing as a freshman there this year, and they are loaded in the backfield. They still made it seem like they want and need me more."
Currently, Whitley holds a lone offer from North Carolina, although recently he has seen a lot more interest from Ohio State.
"They are recruiting me and I never thought I would get stuff from such a long ways away," he said. "I know Maurice Clarett was there and he's a great back. He got a chance to go in the NFL even though he didn't have a fast 40 time. It's not about how fast you are; it's about what is in your mind and the offensive line in front of you. I'm looking for somewhere to help lead me to be one of the great players. I know Eddie George went there too and they have a history of great backs that go to the NFL and that's the most important thing."
What does Whitley want out of a school?
"I want one that's best for me," he said. "I want a school that is close to home and it feels like home. I'm looking for somewhere to play as a sophomore or freshman and I'm looking for a good education. I also want to have a bond with the coaching staff."
The running back prospect is also getting ready for next year.
"I'm trying to improve everything to be the person I was last year. The hardest thing for me is to continue where I left off because we're losing a lot of people," he said. "I'm ready for it though and I just need to get my game up and be a tougher back to catch and bring down. I'm just looking to be myself and work together as a family to get better."
Whitley ran for 2,700 yards rushing and 3,700 all-purpose yards along with 39 touchdowns as a junior. He was named MVP of the team, best running back in the area is a preseason All-American.