Speedy 6-3, 202 Antonio Cromartie from Lincoln High visited Auburn in December and has since gone to Michigan and Florida for official visits. With trips scheduled to Alabama this coming weekend and Florida State the next, Cromartie has been a busy traveler of late and he says he'll be happy when Feb. 5 rolls around.
Noting that he'll likely wait until signing day to make his intentions known, Cromartie says all of the schools he is considering are in the running at the moment. For Auburn that is a good sign after the talented defensive back/wide receiver visited during bowl practices in December. Without the benefit of having the students on campus, the Tigers held their own in Cromartie's eyes.
"What I like about Auburn is Coach (Gene) Chizik and Coach Tub (Tommy Tuberville)," Cromartie tells Inside The Auburn Tigers. "They are family people. They look out for their players. I got to see them practice and everything and I got to see how everything goes when they practice. That was a good part of my visit. I talked to some of the players. They care about the coaches and what they do while they are in Auburn. Even though there wasn't anybody there (students) when I visited I still had fun."
At one time Cromartie had talked about taking an unofficial visit back to Auburn to see the campus when students are in town, but his mother had other ideas. Instead of that he will stay home and visit hometown Florida State instead.
"I don't think that's going to happen," Cromartie says of return trip to Auburn. "My mom wants me to take my visit to Florida State on the 31st. That's when I was going to come back there."
As a senior Cromartie scored 16 touchdowns on offense and made seven interceptions on defense as Lincoln finished 12-1-1, losing in the 4A semi-finals. He has run in the low 4.4s for the 40-yard dash and has a personal best time of 10.7 in the 100 meters.
Taking trips each of the last two weeks to Ann Arbor and Gainesville, Cromartie has experienced things that he says were fun to go through. Both had things that were positives in his mind and have given him more to think about in the coming days and weeks.
"The Michigan visit went good," Cromartie says. "It was snowing up there and that was my first time to see snow. The most exciting part of that visit was when I went to the Michigan-Penn State basketball game the whole crowd was chanting my name. I went to Florida this past weekend. My mom and them went and it seemed like they had a good time. It feels like a whole family environment down there."
With five schools to choose from and just one final answer to be given, Cromartie has a lot of thinking to do before signing a National Letter of Intent on signing day. Despite speculation that he already knows where he's going, Cromartie says this race is a long way from being over.
"This one is going to go down to the wire," he notes.