ON LOCATION: Carlos Watkins

FOREST CITY, N.C. - Carlos Watkins has grown close to three college recruiters over the last several months, but there's one that stands out above the rest.

DT Carlos Watkins Profile

On Wednesday, Watkins told CUTigers.com that he's tightest with Clemson defensive tackles coach Dan Brooks.

"Ever since I met him, he's been a cool guy," Watkins said. "He's just laid back, funny. That's pretty much it. He's a cool guy."

Florida linebackers coach/special teams coordinator D.J. Durkin and Alabama defensive line coach Chris Rumph have also developed close relationships with Watkins.

"Coach Durkin, he's a straight up guy. He's always sending me something on Facebook, just messing around with me, telling me happy Easter and what not, asking how my family's doing," Watkins said.

With Rumph, Watkins said, "He messes around with me, too. We keep up with each other a lot."

Florida, Nebraska, Georgia, North Carolina, Wake Forest and Arkansas have sent coaches to Chase during the current evaluation period to check in on the Scout.com four-star. Brooks was scheduled visit on Wednesday afternoon.

Though Watkins is up to 14 offers now, Clemson, his first, has an advantage over the rest of the field.

"They're always going to be on top, because that was my first offer. That's the reason why they're on top," he said.

Watkins grew up pulling for Miami and most of his family and friends are Hurricane fans. That offer was sent a couple of weeks ago, about a week before he took off for spring break.

"I've liked them since I was a little kid…I really like that school. I'd like to make a visit out there to see how they are," he said.

Aside from Clemson and Miami, Florida, Alabama, South Carolina and North Carolina are also standing out.

"I've got to make some visits before I can narrow it down a little bit," Watkins said.

He's visited Clemson and South Carolina, and made a brief trip to North Carolina.

A decision is expected to be reached later this fall.

"My dad, he wants me to make my decision at least before the third game of the season. If I can get it a little earlier, he wants me to make it before football season," Watkins said. "He doesn't want me to rush it. If I don't know right off the bat, if it takes being at the end of the season, that's what we have to do."

Several aspects will be considered as he works towards making a decision.

"I'll see how like the environment that I'm in, see how I get a feel for the players and coaches, as well. Academics will have to do a lot with it," Watkins said.

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