A Georgia linebacker with high potential is eagerly awaiting a trip to
Florida this weekend.
Verdun, a 6-foot-2, 230-pound inside linebacker from Thomson, will camp
at Florida after previous appearances at Tennessee, Clemson and Middle Tennessee
"They've all been great," he said. "But I'm really
looking forward to going down (to Gainesville). I want to see the campus and
everything, and I feel like there's going to be some great players there. It'll
give me a chance to see how I stack up. So far, I've held my own everywhere I've
been. I feel like I've learned a lot I can bring back to my team, too."
Verdun, who recorded 318 tackles, 30 tackles for loss
and eight sacks as a sophomore and junior, said he's received the most interest
from Auburn and Clemson. His top five includes both of those schools, Florida,
Georgia and Tennessee.
"I liked Georgia growing up," he said. "They're just
down the road, so I've been a Bulldog my whole life. I've also got lots of
friends and family and people around town in my ear all the time saying, 'You
gotta go to Georgia. You gotta go to Georgia,' so it's going to be a hard
decision if they offer a scholarship."
None of his top five have offered to date. "I think
they're waiting to see more of me this fall," he said. "I'm not real worried
about that now. I know they will come."
Verdun talked about some of his other favorites:
"With Auburn, they've got great facilities and a
big-time football atmosphere. Plus, I love the way they run their defense. I
feel like it would really suit my style.
"With Clemson, it's a lot like Auburn. They're both
smaller towns where it's kind of like a football community to itself. There
aren't many distractions, just football. I like their facilities and coaching
"Tennessee, what can you say? It's a great, great
program. One of the best. They've got everything there. I like their new
student-athlete academic center, too. They say the athletes will get all the
help they could ever want for academics."
What will Verdun ultimately be looking for in a school?
"I'm just trying to find the best possible opportunity
for me," he said. "Will I be playing right away or redshirting? Will I get a lot
of playing time early? How do I fit in the system? Will I get to stay at
my position, or will I be moved around to offense or somewhere else? What kind
of academic assistance do you get?"
He says academics will play a key role in his decision.
He maintains a 3.7 GPA and expects to easily obtain a passing score on the ACT
or SAT. He's interested in pursuing a degree in either industrial engineering or
While he's not crunching ballcarriers or the books,
Verdun is dedicated to improving himself in the weight room. In addition to his
nice frame and 4.6 speed, he boasts a 365-pound bench and 595-pound squat.
"I try to challenge myself to constantly get better," he
said. "I try to set a new max every two weeks, by at least 15 pounds. I just
went from 340 to 365 on my bench."