Linebacker Close To Making His College Choice

This high school football standout from Georgia has the Tigers high on his list of favorites.

Powder Springs, Ga.--One of the most impressive athletes to attend a football camp at Auburn this summer was linebacker Gerald McRath from McEachern High.

A 6-2, 215-pounder with 4.5 speed in the 40-yard dash, McRath was exceptional in drills and has a knack for finding the football. Because of that he's one of the players that Auburn is targeting in this recruiting class to stock a defense that will lose linebackers Dontarrious Thomas and Karlos Dansby after this season.

"Things aren't too busy right now," McRath tells Inside The Auburn Tigers about his recruitment. "I'm hearing from Clemson, Florida, Cincinnati, Southern Miss, North Carolina and Wake Forest right now in addition to Auburn."

Gerald McRath

A visitor to both the Nike Combine and an Auburn summer camp, McRath had a chance to see the Auburn program and campus up close and personal and says he liked everything about the experience. He also got a chance to see his first Auburn game ever this past weekend when he was in town for Auburn's upset win over Tennessee. That game obviously made a big impression on him and he says the Tigers are now in the lead and it might be close to coming to an end.

"I like the atmosphere, the people and the coaches," McRath says. "I like the school as well and the players. The school in general, I just get the good feeling when I'm around. Saturday was an awesome game. I took in the atmosphere trying to find a parking spot. We felt that coming into town.

"Auburn right now is pulling away," adds McRath. "I'm not sure when I'll make a decision. It might be early, but I kind of feel like I'm getting ready to make a decision soon. I just don't know exactly when."

The leader for a rebuilding McEachern team that lost much of its firepower on offense and defense from last season, McRath leads the team in tackles with 30 through four games and also has three tackles for losses and three quarterback pressures. After beginning the season in the middle, he has moved to outside linebacker and says that he feels more at home on the perimeter where he can use his speed to track down opponents. As a junior McRath had a strong season with 80 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, five caused fumbles, two fumble recoveries (one for a touchdown) and eight sacks.

A multi-sport star, McRath also wrestles and last season he finished fourth in the state in the 189-pound weight class. Up nearly 30 pounds from his wrestling weight last season, McRath says that he spent a great deal of time in the weight room prior to his senior season trying to get bigger and stronger. The work has obviously paid off and hasn't cost him any speed. That is important because he also runs the 100-meter and 200-meter for his high school and has a personal-best time of 11.8 in the 100.

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