The group includes one of the most heavily recruited prospects in the country, a speedy two-way standout from Florida and a defensive lineman from Texas.
Demetri Stewart is a 6-4, 220 linebacker from Northeast High in Oakland Park, Fla. Brian West is a 6-4, 265-pound defensive lineman from Ozen High in Beaumont, Tex., who in August verbally committed to Texas Tech. Walter McFadden is a 6-0, 175 speedster from Ely High in Pompano Beach, Fla.
Stewart is the most heavily recruited of the trio and says he has offers from close to 100 colleges. Miami is his favorite and he lists Oklahoma, Notre Dame, Ohio State, LSU and Florida as other colleges he is considering. This will be Stewart's second trip to Auburn this year. He was on campus in the summer for a football camp.
Commenting on the Tigers, he said, "Auburn is also one of those up-and-coming programs and they've already beat LSU this year. They've also blown out the other teams they played. They have great LBs and an aggressive style of defense--it's also a real football town. I like the campus there and the stadium."
Commenting on the Hurricanes, he said, "Miami has been recruiting me the longest and the linebacker situation there also plays a big part. They also send a lot of guys into the NFL draft. They have a great blitz-style defense and they go full speed in everything they do. I know if I went there I'd always have a team around me that could win a championship--and in south Florida that's a good thing. I'm comfortable with the coaches and being around the players.
"Oklahoma has a fast physical blitz style defense," he added. "Their 4-3 is almost the same one we run at my high school. They have a great coaching staff and coach (Bob) Stoops is a real people person--the team is like a family how everybody watches out for each other. They broke an attendance record recently held by Oregon the weekend of my official visit. Oklahoma fans love their football.
"Notre Dame is a prestigious program and they have great academics as well as athletes. They are an up-and-coming team and coach (Tyrone) Willingham is also a real people person.
"LSU is a blitzing team all the time--they have a great defensive coordinator and a great defense. They all seem like a close knit family within that program. I like the fan support there and it's a great place to be around.
"The defense at Florida is really good right now. They've really improved on how the program is run--everybody that actually sees the swamp loves the swamp. It's a great program."
In August, West said that he planned to sign with Texas Tech choosing the Red Raiders over Auburn, Tulsa, Louisiana Tech, Northwestern and Louisiana Lafayette. West, who made 76 tackles with three sacks as a junior, bench presses 350 pounds. However, he has re-opened his recruiting and is making the long trip to Auburn this weekend.
West, who is still growing, checked in at 6-3, 242 at an MSL spring combine, but has gained an inch in height and 20-plus pounds since then according to recent measurements.
Auburn rarely recruits prospects in the state of Texas. West is an exception. His high school coach and Auburn defensive coordinator Gene Chizik are friends.
McFadden is known for his speed, which he also uses as a kickoff returner. He raced 99 yards for a TD on the opening kickoff of his junior season as his team beat Dillard High of Fort Lauderdale 54-16. Ely is a team that has sent numerous prospects into the college ranks in recent years.
He has been clocked at well under 4.5 for the 40-yard dash with a fastest clocking of 4.35. Cornerbacks are a high priority for the Tigers in the 2005 signee class and he plays that position as well as wide receiver, another position at which the Tigers have a need in the upcoming signee class.
Florida and FSU look to be the main competition for McFadden, who was a standout at an Auburn summer football camp. He erned honorable mention All-State honors last season.
The Tigers are also expected to have at least 100 other prospects and suspects in for unofficial visits.