Laying The Wood To Opponents

This athletic defensive football prospect has the Tigers high on his list.

Hialeah, Fla.--Re-stocking the defensive end position will be a big key for the Auburn Tigers this recruiting season and one of the players that they are looking at to fill their shelves is 6-4, 230-pound John Wood from American High School.

A cat-quick pass rusher who can get to the quarterback with the best of them, Wood says that his play this season has drawn the interest of some high-profile programs.

"I like Auburn, Virginia Tech, Florida State, LSU, University of Miami and North Carolina State," he notes. "It's wide open but I've got a little favoritism for Auburn." Although he admits a fondness for the Tigers, he says that he won't take any visits until after the season when he can give his full concentration to choosing the school of his future.

Knowing Auburn's need for ends with James Callier, Javor Mills and Alton Moore all gone after this season, Wood says that automatically puts the Tigers in the hunt for his services. But, he also knows there are more important things to consider when choosing a college. He notes that he got a chance to see what the Tiger program was all about over the summer.

"I know if I go to Auburn I'll be treated good," Wood says. "I saw how the players are attached to the coaches when I went there for the summer camp."

Having to deal with almost constant double-teams from the opposition because of his reputation alone, Wood had 44 tackles, six sacks and nine tackles for losses before Friday night's game against Carol City High School. American would fall 12-7 to Carol City but was still able to earn the runner-up spot in the region and will take on Sunrise High School in the first round of the playoffs in two weeks. At 6-3, American takes on Vero Beach in the regular season finale this Friday night.

John Wood

A three-year starter at end for American, Wood is one of those rare athletes that doesn't come along very often. Although he weighs 230 pounds, he has run a 4.66 40-yard dash and averages 14.7 points and 15.1 rebounds per game as a power forward for the basketball team. With a bench press of 320 pounds and a 460-pound squat, the already strong Wood will have a chance to become even stronger in a college winter weight program where he can specialize in gaining size and strength instead of playing basketball.

Tiger Ticket Extra: Known for being a fierce pass rusher, Wood says that his strengths as a player compliment that style of play perfectly. He also notes that he's working on ways to get better against blocking schemes designed to make him a non-factor in the game. "My strengths as a player are my quickness off the ball, my aggressiveness and the way I use my hands," he notes. "One of the things I'm working on improving is breaking double-teams because I see a lot of those now."


Inside The AU Tigers Top Stories