"Everything went good today," Thornton says. "I came over to finally meet Coach (Tracy) Rocker, my defensive line coach. He really impressed me today. I've talked with him a couple of times on the phone in the past. Everything went well."
At 6-2, 280 with quickness and strength at the point of attack, Thornton is a player in the mold of a Rocker coming out of high school. That connection is just one of the reasons why Thornton says he wanted to get to know Rocker more on his Sunday visit.
"It was everything I expected out of him," Thornton notes. "He's a great coach. A great guy. He's just a great person all the way around. We had a great conversation today. We had some good times but got serious about business. Everything went good."
With offers from a who's who of teams from around the country including Auburn, Alabama, Georgia, Miami, South Carolina and Tennessee among others, Thornton says following his visit to the Plains the Tigers are definitely one of his finalists.
"Auburn I would definitely say is in my top five," Thornton says. "I wouldn't name a position right now but they are in my top five. I would also say Georgia (is in the top five).
"I'm going to try to make my final commitment after the third or fourth game of my season," he adds. "Hopefully I can get my top five out in a couple of weeks."
In trying to narrow down his list Thornton says there are several factors he's looking for in a school and right now Auburn is one that continues to come up big in every category.
"I'm looking for a great coach, my playing chances and being able to play early, a great education, and the people around me like a great coaching staff and a great coach-player relationship," Thornton says. "Auburn is definitely telling me I would have every opportunity to come in and play right away. I'm going to look forward to that.
"I have been to Auburn several times and every time I'm down it gets better and better," Thornton adds. "That makes the chances better by getting to know the coaches. I haven't met every coach yet, the coaches I have met are pretty good.
"That's why Auburn is in my top five. They have what I'm looking for in a school. I haven't been out to all of my other schools in my top five. I'm going to try to get out to some other schools before I go back to school. I'll make my decision off that."