By this time most prospects have either committed or are really beginning to narrow things down. That's not the case for running back Tashard Choice, who remains open for the most part.
"I haven't really narrowed things down yet," said the 6-foot-1, 200-pound running back from Lovejoy, Ga. "I'm still looking at a lot of schools. West Virginia, Notre Dame, Mississippi State, Florida, Stanford, Michigan State, Oklahoma State and Indiana are all still in the running."
Choice hasn't taken any official visits yet, but things are going to get a lot more busy in the coming weeks.
"I'm going to West Virginia (Jan. 10), Stanford (Jan. 17) and Mississippi State (Jan. 24). I'm supposed to go to Indiana from Jan. 15-17, but I might bump that and change it to Mississippi State. I might even try to get out to Oklahoma State in that time. But I know I'm going to West Virginia, Stanford, and Mississippi State."
A lot of recruits considering Michigan State this year have faced a confusing situation, with the firing of Bobby Williams and the hiring of John L. Smith. How has the situation affected Choice?
"It's actually pushed them higher up my list," said Choice. "I'm considering them a lot more. Coach Smith recruited me real hard when he was at Louisville and I liked him, so it will help them."
The Spartans could get a visit from Choice before all is said and done.
Did Choice get a chance to check out any of the bowl games this year?
"Yeah, I watched pretty much all of them," he laughed. "If one was on, I was there. I watched the West Virginia game -- I know a lot of guys there. I watched the Notre Dame game too. They both got beaten real bad by Virginia and NC State, but they're still teams on the rise and it didn't affect me at all."
What will be the biggest factors in Choice's decision?
"The three biggest factors for me will be the education each school offers, the football program overall and the staff. I want to go somewhere that offers a lot of academic options and would let me be successful on the field at the same time.
"The staff is really important because for four or five years they're going to have as big an impact on you as anyone you'll know. Playing time isn't really going to matter, but I do want the chance to compete wherever I go."
So when is decision time?
"I don't really know when I'm going to make my decision. It's going to be one of those things that will happen whenever it feels right. It might be after all the visits, it might be on Signing Day, or it might be when one schools jumps in front of the others.
"All the schools I mentioned are pretty much even right now, so I can't know when I'll decide."