“I was thinking about committing to Auburn and they were one my top schools,” Manning said. “I visited today and I just thought it was the perfect fit for me.”
One of the things that Manning got to experience that helped him get a better feel for the Tigers was a virtual reality tour that allowed him to see Tiger Walk and the pre-game eagle flight. Those things combined with the opportunity and program waiting at Auburn made it the right time for him.
"What stood out to me was how much the fans are just into the football program with the Tiger Walk and War Eagle," Manning said. "It was pretty cool. That was pretty good seeing all the fans cheering and stuff and to think that next fall I'll be right there."
A prospect who received an offer from the Tigers in early June, Manning chose Auburn over Pittsburgh, North Carolina and North Carolina State and others. The Tigers also picked up a commitment from Daquan Newkirk from The First Academy in Orlando.
It was the commitment of Newkirk and fellow Orlando native Woody Barrett that also had an impact on Manning's decision because the three have been close friends dating back to their freshman seasons when all played at Evans High. Now at different schools but still very close, the trio will be reunited again at Auburn next fall.
"It helped me to think that I have teammates I have played with before and built relationships with and I'll be able to play with them on the next level," Manning said. "It's pretty exciting. We're going to really take it up a notch when we get to Auburn."