Cutting his list to five schools at the moment consisting of Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Ole Miss and USC, Williams talks about that and much more in this exclusive Q and A session with Inside The Auburn Tigers.
ITAT: What was your reasoning to go ahead and cut your list to five schools right now?
Williams: "For right now it's more important for me to see how much interest they have in me. When they write me on Facebook or when we talk on the phone they don't just say hey, they actually talk about the school good and bad. We talk about the defense and how the team has played over the years. We talk about other coaches.
"Another reason why I picked Southern Cal to be in there was last spring Tee Martin came down to see me. From USC to Mobile is a long way. It kind of stuck out to me because I was thinking ‘he came so far to see me.' It made me think he must have a lot of interest in me. That's the reason why I have that top five now, to see who has the interest in me right now."
ITAT: Talk a little bit about each of your favorites and what has them in the mix.
Williams: "Like I said about Southern Cal, they came all the way down to see me in the spring last year. That really stuck out to me. Tee Martin, I talked to him all the way back when he was at Kentucky. We talked then and he moved to Southern Cal.
"Back with Alabama and Auburn, they are the same. I have known their coaches since my freshman year. I had already begun that relationship. Now with Auburn they have that new set and when I visited for the Junior Day I got to know them pretty well. They were talking really good about the defense. Coach (Ellis) Johnson coached a really good defense back at South Carolina. Watching his film back from when he coached, it was great. I talked to Coach (Gus) Malzahn and his wife. Both of them had a lot of interest in me.
"He actually watched me when he coached Cam Newton. He went to Arkansas State and said he heard about me, but knew I wasn't worried about Arkansas State. He said he was really happy when he got the job at Auburn because he remembered me. When I went up for the Junior Day we had a lot of conversations and it was really good."
"On to Alabama, everybody knows Nick Saban. He's a really great guy and is more about business than humor. I like talking to him. He talks about real things. Coach (Kirby) Smart talks a lot about the defense and how they play and what he expects from me in a couple of years.
"With Ole Miss I just started talking to Coach (Chris) Kiffin and I'm going to visit there sometime maybe during the summer. I want to get to know the other coaches, but me and Coach Kiffin talk on the phone and he talks about their interest in me.
"At Florida I talk with Coach (Will) Muschamp a lot. We were supposed to visit there tomorrow, but we changed it until June so I could actually visit and they can show me around. Those are the main reasons why I picked those five schools."
ITAT: After spending time at Auburn with Coach Johnson, the need for linebackers is an obvious one with the Tigers. They are looking for guys to come in and play quick. How much will that factor into the decision-making process for you?
Williams: "I already know there is going to be competition wherever I go. I have to be ready for that. I also want to watch the coaches and see what he expects the linebackers to do. He (Johnson) expects basic linebacker play, be able to fill the gap and get the running back. They have a position called star (safety/linebacker hybrid) and back when I was a sophomore I played strong safety. He told me that I might play the star position also and cover receivers outside. He's really interested in me and Shaun Hamilton at Carver. Those are the two main linebackers he's aiming for. That really stuck out to me because he's telling me all these positions I could play so he's basically telling me I could be on the field. That's what I'm looking for."
ITAT: What is the process for you now? You have kind of narrowed it down to five. When will you narrow it down even more and maybe start to make a decision? Would you like to have a decision before your senior year or will you take your time?
Williams: "I predict right now that I might be able to come up with a top three during the season then after the season is probably when I will make my decision. As of right now I'm going to keep the top five. Some school may drop out and another one may come on, it just depends on who shows more interest. That's especially true this spring when I see who all comes to see me and the team play. I made that five just based on who shows interest. It's just more of where I'm standing right now. It's not saying I would never go to LSU for example. They are still in the mix, but I haven't heard from them in a while. That's the only reason."
ITAT: You talked about going to watch some spring practices at several schools, how important is that for you to be able to watch and see how the coaches interact and what they do on the field?
Williams: "I know coaches will go hard in college. I want to see how their work ethic is and how they are organized and how the competition is going to be and how hard they work their players. I don't want a coach to give me breaks every five minutes. I want a coach that keeps us going until practice is over, maybe get a little water break. I want to keep pushing through the whole practice. I want to see that to know how hard I have to work to do this. If I don't then I'll be cut or under somebody. I want to see what I have to work on before I get to college."
ITAT: Heading into your senior year and you're already one of the top players in the country. What are you looking to improve on heading into the 2013 season?
Williams: "The first thing is to become a leader for my team. We have a lot of young players coming up and a lot of young players that played last year. Most of the seniors are gone and they were most of our leaders. Now I have to pick up where they left off and be a leader, me and Josh Casher. That's the first thing I'm looking forward to.
"The second thing is getting bigger and faster. Being a 6-2, 225 linebacker is average. I'm trying to be 6-3, 240 maybe. I'm physical, but I want to get more physical. I like where I am now, but I can be better. I'm trying to aim for being better and when I get to college I'm going to aim for being great."