Oradell (N.J.) Bergen Catholic linebacker Brian Cushing thought he had all the offers he needed, until he received two more this week. How do offers from Oklahoma and Ohio State change things for him?
"It confuses things, but in a good way," said the 6-foot-3, 221-pounder. "Ohio State wasn't a huge surprise because they've been recruiting me, but I was a bit shocked by Oklahoma. The offer came in the mail and no one really told me to expect it. Those are two of the teams that have won national titles the last few years, so it's an honor. Oklahoma rarely recruits this area, but I knew they offered some other players in New Jersey and I was hoping they'd offer me."
The two new offers change Cushing's top five dramatically.
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"Right now it's Southern Cal, Miami, Ohio State, Oklahoma and Florida State," he said. "They're all excellent programs with a chance to win a national championship. I have offers from all of them."
Cushing is also interested in Virginia, Virginia Tech, Notre Dame, Nebraska and Stanford.
"I don't really have it narrowed down yet, but I'll have to do that soon," he said. "I'm going on an unofficial visit to Virginia in June with Eugene Monroe and I'm camping at Boston College and a few others places this summer. I hope to narrow it down to five schools by the end of the summer, but I won't decide until I take my five official visits. Right now I'm pretty sure I'll visit Southern Cal and Miami, but beyond that I don't know."
As a junior, Cushing made 120 tackles, had 10 sacks and seven interceptions playing safety.
"I'll play safety again this year, but I do a lot of work close to the line of scrimmage as well," he said. "Southern Cal told me they wanted me as a strong safety while everyone else wants me as a linebacker. I think I'd probably grow out of safety pretty quick in college, but I don't really have a preference. I just want the right school."
Cushing posted an amazing 3.82-second shuttle time at the Elite College Combine in New Jersey earlier this month. He also ran a 4.51-second 40-yard dash and has done 42 bench reps at school. His best vertical is 41 inches.