February 28, 2008

White picking up interest

The recruiting ground is fertile around Pickerington (Ohio) Central high school. With one player already committed to the Buckeyes and another player on the verge of picking up some large offers you would think that might be as deep as the Tigers go, but that certainly isn't the case. 6-foot-0, 175-pound cornerback/wide receiver Patrick White has made a name for himself as well as a three year starter getting ready for his senior season.

White already holds offers from Cincinnati, Indiana and Akron and has received interest from several other schools throughout the region and could solidify some offers after making junior day visits.

Patrick is the son of former Buckeye Terry White. His father played for Ohio State during the 1985 season before transferring to West Virginia to finish up his collegiate career with the Mountaineers. It should be of little surprise that both the Buckeyes and the 'Eers are both on his list of schools.

There has been no consensus as to which side of the ball that White will play in college and his high school coach knows that he can excel on either side of the ball.

"Patrick is a lockdown corner but he is also a high-point receiver and he catches it over his shoulder well," Pickerington Central head coach Jay Sharrett said. "(Patrick) also has the school record for the longest TD reception. He is a good open field tackler and he knows the importance of making the tackle."

White admits that he has a great sense of being able to "see the ball" and then in turn "get the ball".

"I'm good at going up and getting the ball," White said. "My depth perception and jumping for the ball (are good). I jump pretty well and if it is a jump ball on either side of the ball I usually come down with it so that is probably my biggest strength so far."

White has proven that he can do a bit of everything currently and when people see him line up they sometimes don't quite know what to expect but every team that Pickerington Central plays knows where he is on the field.

"He's a kickoff returner, punt returner and opponents know him right away," Sharrett said. "His ranginess and lean muscle mass is deceptive because he will come up and hit you also."

But strength is something that White would like to work on during his final season of high school football.

"I need to work on my strength and coming out of my backpedal," White said. "Strength-wise I am not the type of guy yet who is going to come up and just smack you nose-to-nose. I am the kind of guy if I think you are too big for me I am going to take your pins out. That is what we are taught to do and it has served me well here but in college I am going to need to come up and hit people."

Patrick is very familiar with Ohio State with his father having played there and has had a chance to talk with some of the Ohio State coaches.

"I have been to the school many times and I have talked to the coaches… both coach (Paul Haynes) and coach (Taver Johnson)," White said. "They both are great guys and I went to three Ohio State games… it's cool and I like the school a lot."
With his teammate, Jamie Wood already committed to Ohio State it would be something to get to play alongside a familiar face but on the flipside White has been looking at the depth charts at the schools he is interested in.

"The depth chart means a lot," White said. "I go on the computer every day and see which schools have signed the most corners that are interested in me or which schools have signed the most wide receivers. But I think that I can compete with anybody and when I get to college it is just going to be another big competition."

Is there anything in particular that the right school would have and make them stand out in the decision-making process?

"I am looking for the right coaching staff to bring my ability to where I can be the best that I can be," White said. "Of course everybody looks for a chance to play early and not only play early but not sit for the years you are there."

White admits that distance is not a factor when it comes to looking at schools.

"It really doesn't matter to me and I could go and play anywhere," White said. "If (some distant school) is where I want to be then I will go anywhere even if it is Florida or Hawaii. My mom would travel with me (laugh)."

White doesn't believe that an Ohio State offer is imminent but that his father wouldn't mind seeing his son play either in Columbus or Morgantown (W.V.) in the future. Ultimately the decision will be up to Patrick and he is in no rush to make a hasty decision.

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