Some high school players have to muddle their way through the recruiting process but not Darius. Jeff Reeves played his high school football at Linden McKinley before accepting a football scholarship in 1978 to the University of Michigan. While at Michigan, Jeff lettered three years and made five starts at strong safety for the Bo Schembechler led Wolverines. His uncles also played college athletics.
The Bearcats are recruiting Darius as a cornerback, but according to Darius, there is plenty of competition. "I'm being recruited by West Virginia, Michigan State, Michigan, Boston College, Northwestern, Georgia Tech, LSU and a lot of MAC schools. It is still very early in the process, but Darius has no offers yet.
Darius gave a summary of his 2006 season as a running back. "I had over 1,700 yards and 16 touchdowns and about 6 yards a carry." That was in a 12 game season because Gahanna Lincoln made the Division IA playoffs and upset the #1 seed Lancaster in the 1st round. As a cornerback, Darius had 2 interceptions last year. Most players would prefer to stay on offense, especially ones that scored 16 times in 12 games, but that's not necessarily the case with this honorable mention all-state player. "It really doesn't matter to me. I'll play anywhere." Darius said about half the schools are recruiting him as a cornerback and the other half want him as a running back-with a couple exceptions. "I have a couple schools that want me as a receiver." Darius started at receiver in Gahanna Lincoln's spread offense as a sophomore.
Cincinnati signed John Hughes (DL/TE) another Gahanna Lincoln product in February. This could benefit the Bearcats in the recruitment of Darius. "John and I are like best friends. We talk all the time. We're close, and he's always telling me about the program and telling me I should go down there."
Academics are always a concern in the recruitment of any player, but since the NCAA has increased the number of core classes needed for 2008, it becomes even a bigger issue next year. However, Darius looks to be in good shape. "I'm a decent student. I get A's and B's. My GPA is about 2.9 or 3.0." Darius will take one of the college entrance tests for the first time in the spring.
When asked what he likes most about Cincinnati, Darius replied. "The coaches. They seem like down to earth people. Like people you could get along with."
Darius is planning to go to Morgantown on Saturday for West Virginia's Junior Day. Ironically, the Mountaineers will be playing the Bearcats in basketball.
Regardless of when the inevitable offers come, Darius said he'd like to wait until after his high school season to make a college choice. "I'd like to keep my mind on playing so I don't really want to make a decision until after the season."
Bearcat Insider will check back with Darius this summer.