Aaron Cochran has no formal decision date in mind, and a singing day hat ceremony seems unlikely. Instead, the 320-pound tackle just assumes go with the flow. When the mood strikes, he'll pull the trigger. No rush. No self-imposed deadlines. No restrictions.
Cochran's favorite schools at this point in the process aren't hard to decipher. His travel agenda is nearly identical to his list of frontrunners. There are no outliers or programs making a late push. He keeps it simple. Kentucky extended a scholarship offer recently, but that didn't seem to have much an impact on his outlook.
Late-arriving coaches face an uphill climb.
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"Cal, Arizona, Oklahoma, Nebraska and Fresno State are really recruiting me hard right now," Cochran said. "If I had a top five, that would be it."
His tightest bond at the moment is to the coaching staff at Oklahoma. Cochran doesn't name the Sooners as his outright leader, but the groundwork has certainly been laid. The architect? OU assistant Bruce Kittle.
"I like Coach Kittle a lot," Cochran said. "He calls a lot and he's real with me. I could see him being my coach for the next five years. My parents like him, too."
Official visits to Nebraska, Oklahoma and Arizona are already in Cochran's rearview. He intends to take a trip to Cal at an undetermined date and will use his final visit to check out a yet-to-be-determined school. The favorite to land the final visit, at least as things stand now, is another Pac 12 institution.
"I might go see Washington," Cochran said. "I think it's maybe Washington, but I don't know for sure yet."
Ideally, all five visits would be in the books before a commitment is made. Cochran says that's only the best-case scenario, though. He's not promising a thing. His gut is leading the way. And with that comes a certain level of unpredictability.
"I'm just going to go on how it feels," Cochran said. "When it feels right, I'll talk to my parents and go from there."
Cochran, who claims 13 offers, was invited to participate in last weekend's Cal State All-Star Game but was forced to decline the invitation because of his high school basketball season, which is off to 11-4 start.