With a tough loss in his rear view mirror, defensive tackle Greg Gilmore, from Hope Mills (N.C.) South View, is focusing on getting better in the off-season, while also dealing with his hectic recruiting process.
"I'll definitely remember the last game," said Gilmore. "I had 11 tackles and played the best I've ever played against one of our biggest rivals. This off-season I'm focusing on getting faster and improving my vision, hand work and upper body strength."
The 6-foot-4, 275-pound defensive tackle holds offers from ten schools including North Carolina State, Virginia Tech, Clemson, California, South Carolina.
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"Some of the schools that stick out in my mind right now are Clemson, Alabama, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech and NC State," said Gilmore. "I will name an official top five before next season starts. Academics is the main focus when I'm looking at a school, but I also want to make sure I'm in a system that fits my playing style."
Gilmore talked about his plan to achieve success as a football player.
"My goal since I was a little kid was to be in the NFL, but I told myself I need to break it up into little steps," said Gilmore. "The next step is college so I need to pick a school that can get me to the NFL and give me something to fall back on."
Sometimes a person can lose focus when receiving as much attention as Gilmore is getting, but he is not allowing it to get to his head.
"My parents think I'm handling the attention well and staying humble," said Gilmore. "They feel like they can give me advice, but at the same time I can make clear decisions and not ruin my life."
Gilmore thinks some of his advisers already have their favorite schools picked out.
"I think Mom wants me to go to Florida, my Dad is a marine and went to his first college game at Boise State, so he's a Boise State fan, and my high school coach is an Alabama fan," said Gilmore.
When it comes to dream schools, Gilmore thinks of one school in particular.
"I grew up loving Southern Cal," said Gilmore. "I've got their hat and coats and all that. They have a young team and once they get off probation I think they can go in the right direction. My dad lives in California and I'll be out training with him so hopefully while I'm there I can go visit USC."
Gilmore has already visited a few schools and is planning more visits.
"I've been to N.C. State a few times and have pretty much seen everything," Gilmore said. "I really like it there and if I go to an in-state school, it would probably be N.C. State. I visited Alabama when they played LSU. I was amazed by their facilities. It's really nice down there in Tuscaloosa. My family and I went on a tour at East Carolina and saw everything. I really liked their facilities and state of the art equipment."
Last season Gilmore recorded 79 tackles, five forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, two sacks and one safety. He is planning on attending the U.S. Army National Combine in San Antonio, Texas in early January.