Standout safety/linebacker Christian Thompson from St. Thomas Aquinas is coming off a state championship season and says his recruiting is beginning to heat up as the holidays near.
"At first recruiting wasn't busy, but it's getting more down to the wire now," the 6-2, 195 Thompson tells Inside The Auburn Tigers. "I'm getting a lot more calls from schools."
One of those schools that came calling was Auburn. After talking with him early in the process, Thompson says the Tigers have come back strong after watching his success as a senior. He says it's exciting to finally be offered by Auburn and he's very interested in the Tigers.
"As of right now I know they are a very good team," Thompson says. "They are very aggressive on defense. I play defense so that is a plus for me."
In addition to Auburn, Thompson says that he currently has offers from Miami, LSU, Florida International, Toledo, Syracuse and Mississippi State. While he doesn't report a favorite at the moment, he says four are at the top and now his toughest decision is deciding on his visits.
"As of right now I'm liking Mississippi State, LSU, Miami and since I just got an offer from Auburn that will play a big role in things," Thompson says. "Three schools (Syracuse, Toledo, Auburn) want me to come on Jan. 11 and I'm still deciding on which one to go to. On Jan. 18 I'm going to Mississippi State.
A plus for the Tigers in the race for the visit is that they have also offered teammate Phillip Pierre-Louis and two former Raiders, kicker Wes Byrum and offensive tackle Jermaine Johnson, will be on Auburn's roster next season. Thompson says that definitely works in the Tigers' favor when deciding on the trip.
"It helps that they're there," Thompson says. "I have talked to Jermaine, but I haven't talked with Wes. We just had a brief conversation.
"Phillip is scheduled to take his visit on the 11th," he adds. "When they talked to me about coming up there they talked about that. It's kind of making it a little bit easier because I'm pushing towards where I want to go now."
In his first year at St. Thomas after transferring from Ely High in Pompano Beach, Thompson played in one of the best high school games of the year last season when the Raiders lost to Lakeland in the Class 5A state title game. Losing a ton of players off last season's squad, Thompson says nobody gave them a chance to get back in 2007, but they did.
The Raiders finished off the job this time around with a 35-20 victory over Osceola High to claim the state title they had come so close to the year before. Thompson says it was very satisfying to finally get the ring.
"It took a lot of hard work and determination because a lot of people didn't think we could make it that far," he says. "We proved everybody wrong. Our mindset was to win and that's what we did."
One of the big reasons for the success of the Raiders was Thompson's play on defense. A starter at safety as a junior and again to start his senior season, Thompson moved to linebacker after a 43-41 loss and Deerfield Beach and after that things took off for St. Thomas Aquinas.
"From last year to this year I see a major improvement in my game," Thompson says. "I got a lot faster and became smarter and more aggressive in making tackles and making plays.
"They had me at linebacker after that loss in the middle of the season," he adds. "We didn't play the run well and coach said he needed me. I told him no problem and that as long as it helped the team I would do whatever it takes to win."
Coming through in the clutch, Thompson delivered as a senior and finished the season with 90 tackles, 14 tackles for a loss and one sack. Being recruited as a safety, Thompson has the speed and size to be a force in the defensive backfield on the next level.
Thompson attended the Scout.com Junior Combine in San Antonio in January and ran a time of 4.6 seconds on a very windy and cold morning and he notes his times are normally much better than that.
"My best time is a 4.4," Thompson says. "I'm pretty consistent at a 4.5, but I know I can run a 4.4 easily."
Thompson also runs track in addition to his play on the gridiron and ran both the 4x100 and 4x400 relays for St. Thomas Aquinas. His best leg in the 100 meters is 10.7 seconds.