DESTREHAN, La. - Rivals.com set out on a four day journey across the southern part of Louisiana on Tuesday. The trip will visit over 20 prospects, including two Rivals 100 members and nearly half of the Louisiana top 20.
"The biggest stop of the day on Tuesday was at Destrehan where Rivals 100 member Jai Eugene gave Rivals the first look at his final top 10 schools.
I know it's not that earth shattering, but I said I was going to narrow it down before the season," Eugene said. "I really did consider everyone, but I just felt that certain schools stood out and so Miami, Florida, LSU, Tennessee, Georgia, Nebraska, USC, Oklahoma, Michigan and Auburn. Really I'm looking at depth charts and majors and things like that to make my choice."
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the 5-foot-11, 169-pound Eugene is ranked as the No. 92 player in the nation, the No. 7 cornerback in the nation and the No. 3 player in the state of Louisiana by Rivals.com.
Former Miami Hurricane and current Baltimore Ravens star defensive back Ed Reed is a Destrehan alumnus and don't think that Reed hasn't taken opportunities to sell the Cane program.
"He mainly just tells me to keep my head on straight and all," Eugene said. "He's been telling me how great Miami is an all and how they will really make you better and make you work hard down there. He has been telling me all about the U, but he also told me to take my time and check everything out and make the best decision for me."
Reed is not the only one putting a bug in the ear of Eugene about his college choice. Former East St. John star and current LSU player Ryan Perriloux has had conversations with Eugene about the local Tigers.
"My plan has been to wait until signing day," Eugene said. "I have been talking to Perrilloux about that because he waited and he told me that it is fun and all, but that it gets really hard at the end. You have so many coaches coming at you and so many people calling and stuff, but you know that when you decide to wait until the end."
Eugene plays quarterback for his high school team and also plays cornerback, but it's very likely that his future in college will lie on the defensive side of the ball.
"I can cover anyone," Eugene said. "I have a real smooth backpedal, real flexible hips and I am also real aware of what is going on around me. There is a lot going on when you're a corner and you have to be aware. I think that playing quarterback will really help me playing in the secondary because I know how quarterbacks and wide receivers think. I know there are always things you can work on to get better too."
As a junior Eugene rushed the ball 84 times for 748 yards and three touchdowns, he also completed 56 passes for 1,163 yards and nine touchdowns. Defensively he collected 25 tackles, three sacks and seven interceptions.
"Talking to all of these coaches has been a great experience," Eugene said. "Pete Carroll and Ken Norton from USC came by this spring and it was cool to talk to them. I got to talk to Urban Meyer at their Friday Night Lights camp last month. Coach Miles at LSU and coach Coker at Miami are great guys too. Dealing with all of these great coaches make it really hard to narrow it down."
Stay tuned as Rivals.com brings you more coverage from the Pelican State with updates for the rest of the week and a full slate of interviews all the way through next week.