Four schools seem to be the favorites for the services of one of the top athletes in the entire country. Florida, Florida State, Notre Dame, and Southern Cal seem to be the front-runners for Nelson Agholor, the Berkeley Prep standout. He is very highly coveted and his talents and skills are rarely seen at the high school level. He is coming off a tremendous year, in which he played mostly running back, and put up some astronomical numbers. Although he hasn't publicly narrowed down his college choices to these four schools, they seem to be ahead of the pack. The Florida Gators are trying to pull ahead this weekend, as Agholor will be officially visiting the Gainesville campus.
For many months, the University of Florida has been the predicted leader for Agholor's services. They have a need for some major playmakers at the wide receiver position, they have a coaching staff that he really gets along with, and it is a place where Agholor can get a very good education. Agholor is the type of individual that looks at more than just football when he narrows his list of schools. He doesn't just view this as a business decision, but more of a life decision. He knows there is more to life than just football and education is something he truly values. Florida provides a very good combination of both.
This weekend, Agholor will be taking an official visit to the University of Florida. It will be an opportunity to learn everything about the school, the academics, and the tradition surrounding the Gator football program. He will be able to sit down with the academic advisers and learn about potential areas of study, as well as sitting down with the Florida coaching staff and getting answers to any questions or concerns he has about the program. Lastly, he will get a chance to visit the campus and the social scene in Gainesville. All of this will give Nelson a better understanding of the university as a whole and it will be very influential on his final decision.
Recently, Gator head coach Will Muschamp issued a scholarship offer to Agholor's teammate, linebacker Schyler Miles. Some people believe this to be a ploy to get Agholor to jump on board with one of his current teammates. This couldn't be further from the truth. Miles is a very solid linebacker, with good size, and a bright future on the gridiron. Florida may be late to the party in offering Miles, but this is an offer that will stand whether Agholor signs with Florida or another school. Yes, it helps sweeten the offer for Agholor and would make his transition easier from Berkeley Prep to Gainesville, but that is definitely not the reason that the Gators offered his Berkeley Prep teammate. The fact of the matter is, Miles earned his offer.
For those who are hoping for a commitment following this visit, you may want to look elsewhere. Agholor will, most likely, not be making any quick decisions at this time. He wants to take his visits, make a smart decision, and most of all, be respectful to those who are recruiting him. If they are taking the time out to recruit him, Agholor will listen and be up-front about that school's potential chances. He is not the type to play games with his recruitment and doesn't want to waste anyone's time.
Nelson Agholor is a very impressive young man and will be successful no matter where he ends up in his future. It is rare to see a student-athlete of his caliber avoid the spotlight in a time where being flashy and self-centered is commonplace. Nelson has his head on straight and is truly respectful and appreciative of the opportunities he has in front of him. He is the type of player that everyone wants to root for. In this industry, we as recruiting analysts, deal with all types of individuals. There are the kids who love the spotlight and enjoy having everyone discuss their every move. There are those that are quiet and don't necessarily want to be bothered often. There are the under-the-radar types that are extremely motivated to silence their critics. There are also the super-talented kids who feel they will make it no matter what, while not truly appreciating those who have helped them along the way or the opportunities they have in front of them.
Then there are the types like Nelson. Smart, hard-working, motivated, and respectful individuals. He has his eyes on the future and knows that there is more to life than 40-times and cone drills. His motivation comes from his friends, family, and teammates. He wants to be great, not just for himself, but for all those who helped him become the person he is today. He is wise beyond his years and you can bet that whichever school is lucky to sign this student-athlete, will have no regrets for his actions on and off the field and will be proud to call him one of their own.
You can follow Tom Loy on Twitter - @tomloy2002 for all recruiting related updates.