AU Serves Up Fun Weekend for Kitchens

Banneker High School standout Shaun Kitchens discusses his offficial visit to Auburn.

College Park, Ga.--Shaun Kitchens arrived for his official recruiting visit this weekend firmly committed to the Auburn Tigers and left that way.

He also brought his parents and made sure his mother was on board with his decision to sign with Coach Gene Chizik's Tigers and he noted that went well, too.

Kitchens, a versatile athlete who can play a variety of positions on offense and defense, wants to play offense in high school and said that the Tigers are recruiting him to play receiver.

The prospect said his mom was concerned that her son was going to be moved to defense once the Banneker standout signs with the Tigers.

"She is just being a mom and is being protective," he said. "She reads a lot of stuff and everybody says I should play defense, but after today she is on board with everything. Coach Malzahn (offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn) cleared that up for her. Now she is on board. It was just a matter of her coming down here and seeing what he expects me to do and seeing where he expects me to play in the offense."

Kitchens made the visit with his teammate and fellow Auburn commitment, Demetruce McNeal, who plays both football and basketball with Kitchens at Banneker High School. "I came in after our game on Friday night," said Kitchens. "I had a pretty good night. I had a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds and we won 60-48. We are 5-1 and I am looking forward to trying to win a state championship in basketball."

Joining the Banneker players on the official visit was another prospect from the Atlanta area, Antonio Goodwin from Washington High, who was an early commitment to the Tigers, but has since taken an unofficial visit to Georgia and is planning to take at least one more official visit to Georgia.

"We were together the whole three days--Friday night, Saturday and today (Sunday)," Kitchens said of Goodwin. "I know him well, too. I know for a fact he is not going anywhere. We talk all of the time or whatever. He is set for (Auburn). He wants to go do a little sight-seeing and take some visits outside the state, but he has his mind made up and it is Auburn for sure."

On Saturday the receiver met with academic officials and watched the Tigers practice at their indoor facility on a rainy day. "Even though the practice was indoors it was still up-tempo,"?he said.

Kitchens said the whole weekend went well. "I liked my visit a lot and I had a lot of fun," he said. Darvin Adams and Eric Smith were his player hosts. "They talked to me about the college lifestyle, coming in and adjusting from high school to the SEC level of football. Everybody knows it is the toughest conference in college.

Commenting on what he liked most about his trip, Kitchens said, "My favorite part was hanging with my future teammates, trying to get a feel for the guys or whatever. I really like that everybody hangs close on the football team. There is no individualism around and it has a whole family feel, which is what the Auburn staff preaches. I really feet that this whole weekend."

Kitchens has been a frequent visitor to the Auburn campus on unofficial trips. He was in Auburn last month to see the Auburn-Alabama football game. "It was an exciting game and a hard-fought game," he said. "I?thought we should have pulled it out in the end, but the guys fought hard. I was talking to some of the Auburn commitments and we were talking about how we couldn't wait until next year so we can be out there on the field playing.

"I think that game really shows that Auburn is on the way up," Kitchens added. "Next year we will beat them."

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