Recruit Excited About Chance To Be A Tiger

For this junior college prospect, it is a case of better late than never.

El Dorado, Kan.--Cornerback Jonathan Wilhite didn't succeed in his goal to be a mid-term graduate from Butler County Community College, but he will still have an opportunity to play college football for the Auburn Tigers.

The speedy and quick 5-10, 175-pound defensive back, who is originally from Ouachita High in Monroe, La., says he got a visit on Tuesday night from Auburn assistant coaches Terry Price and Greg Knox with a scholarship from head coach Tommy Tuberville. He says the Auburn coaches gave him instructions on how to have the scholarship papers filled out, signed by his mother and sent back to Auburn on Feb. 2nd, which is national signing day.

"I was wondering if they were still going to be offering a scholarship," Wilhite says of Auburn, which originally told him he needed to be ready to enroll at Auburn for classes in January and participate in spring drills to be assured a spot in the signee class. "I was pretty frustrated when I didn't finish my classwork in time to finish sooner," he says.

After taking his regular fall semester classes, Wilhite says he took two independent study courses--a math class and one in psychology. "I came pretty close," he says. "I got the math class done. I think I would have got the psychology work done, too, but I just didn't have enough time to finish it."

Just three hours shy from being able to transfer to a Division I program with the new NCAA rules that 40 percent of his coursework must be completed in his major, Wilhite says he won't have a problem with that when he finishes at Butler County Community College in May.

"I only need like three hours, but I am taking extra classes--15 hours--that will help me work toward my degree," he says. "I am in business management."

Jonathan Wilhite

Wilhite notes that on Tuesday coaches Knox and Price also discussed plans for the future. "They talked to me about getting my classes done and coming to Auburn this summer to work out," the cornerback says. "They told me it was important to get my business done here so I can get to Auburn and begin practice with the team."

Wilhite notes that he could have a teammate from Butler County's 2004 Jayhawk Conference championship squad joining him at Auburn. Frantz Hardy, a wide receiver from Miami, Fla., is expected to make a decision later this week. Hardy also got a visit from the Auburn coaches on Tuesday, Wilhite notes.

"I would have to say that Frantz is one of the best receivers I have ever guarded," Wilhite says. "I have enjoyed going against him in practice every day. He has made me a lot better. He runs good routes and he is fast. He is real competition to work out with. He wants it real bad, just like I do, so we work hard together."

Hardy, who has been recruited by colleges from across the country, took an official visit to the University of Kansas last weekend. He visited Auburn last fall. Wilhite says the wide receiver told him that the Tigers are definitely in the mix. "It is between Auburn and Nebraska and he told me that Auburn leads," Wilhite says.

Like Wilhite, the 6-2, 175 Hardy is also scheduled to graduate in May and has redshirted so he will have three years of Division I eligibility.

Wilhite says he also considered Oklahoma State, Louisville, Arkansas and others. He played on a powerful team at Butler County that was undefeated in the regular season. His team lost to Pearl River out of Mississippi in what was considered the juco national title game.

Wilhite is a friend of current Auburn cornerback and former Butler County player David Irons, Jr., who missed the entire 2004 season with a knee injury.


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