To say this week has been busy for Saeed Blacknall would be an understatement. The Rivals250 wide receiver from Manalapan (N.J.) took a series of visits this week because it was his spring break.
"I left New Jersey on Saturday and my first stop was Georgia, the second stop was Georgia Tech, third was LSU and the last one was Clemson," said the 6-foot-3, 205-pound Blacknall. "It was so long.
"Athens was different because it was a small town and there were a lot students and fans in such a small area," he said. "It is obviously one of the big stages in college football and the SEC. It was fun to actually walk on the field and see all the great things about Georgia's program.
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"That night I made the trip into Atlanta to see Georgia Tech," Blacknall said. "I stayed at a hotel and woke up that morning with my eyes wide because I didn't know Georgia Tech was right in the city like that. It was cool because I don't know any other colleges where you're in the stadium and in the background you see all the buildings and you get that loud echo off the buildings.
"I saw a couple players and members of the coaching staff I have good relationships with. The players kept it real and told me all about the school.
"On Wednesday, I went to Baton Rouge and got a hotel there," he said. "When I got to see LSU's stadium, it blew me away because not every one gets to see that, one of the biggest stages in college football. Everything was new, the people were amazingly nice and the campus just seemed so alive. It was almost like a movie. All the coaches were awesome.
"I liked all the coaches from the other schools but there was just a different kind of vibe from LSU and that town. There was just something different. They are my No. 1 school right now.
"Clemson was also different, too," he said. "They're a great school. They play with and beat schools like LSU. Everything they had to offer was great and I liked seeing a different stage of college football in the ACC. Their facilities were top notch and their coaches were cool."
This week, Blacknall announced that the LSU Tigers are currently his top school, followed by Ohio State and Florida State, in that order.
"I was asked by my mom and my coaches about which school I liked and decided 'What the heck?!' All of this could change though when I visit Ohio State and Michigan," Blacknall said. "I need to see Michigan and go from there. I could go there and get my mind blown and that would make the decision even tougher. As of right now, LSU is at the top."
Blacknall expanded on some of the things he likes about the Buckeyes and Seminoles.
"You can talk about Les Miles and Nick Saban but Urban Meyer belongs in that conversation," he said. "They're all great and what Urban Meyer is doing at Ohio State and what they did last year, going undefeated, is great. There is a very good chance they could go pretty far this year. From what I heard after talking to him and the team's tone, the plan is to go far this year.
"I call the coaches at Florida State every once in a while and they explained to me what my role would be if I would go to that school," Blacknall said. "I also did my research online and checked out their receivers and depth chart and I just love the situation at Florida State right now.
"They are trying to rebuild and get things going. There are a good amount of receivers graduating and going in to the NFL so that's a plus. I guess it speaks for itself, Florida State is Florida State."
There is a lot more information Blacknall wants to gather before deciding on which school to attend and he can't wait to get back out on the road to see some more schools.
"I want to take some more visits very, very soon," he said while driving back to Manalapan (N.J.) from Clemson. "I'm starting to understand how it works. There are only so many stops these colleges will let you take. They let it be known how many spots are left so there won't be any surprises. I'm trying to get all these visits in as soon as I can.
"Unfortunately, I didn't get to visit Florida State on this trip. Hopefully I can make it down there in early summer. The next school I visit will most likely be Ohio State. We're still trying to figure out the date."
Blacknall racked up 743 yards on 40 catches and scored 16 touchdowns last season.
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