"I feel comfortable with Michigan and I know the program over there," says McKinney, from Louisville Central. "There's a 30% chance I'll choose Michigan. They're recruiting me as a TE and though there's a bit of a depth chart at the position, they're talking about playing two TEs. They've got a solid TE tradition over the past couple years. But I don't like the fact that their defense is a 3-4. I've also got a cousin (Grant Mason) that plays DB over there--a transfer from Stanford.
"Nebraska has that good blackshirt defense. And coach (John) Blake (DL) coached for the Dallas Cowboys. He's seen many great players and has guaranteed me that if he coaches me, I'll be able to get to the next level. Most of their coaching staff has experience in the pros--like coach (Randy) Jordan, who played for the Raiders for several seasons. They run the team like it's a pro team.
"Clemson's process of recruiting has been the strongest. I've gotten handwritten letters from their staff everyday for the past month expressing their great defensive line tradition and their need to have me play for them in their conference. They want me to play immediately and I like coaches (Tommy) Bowden, (Ron) West (OL asst), and (Billy) Napier (grad asst/defense).
"I like the location of Ohio State and their solid tradition. They coach players to win. I like coach (Jim) Heacock (asst HC/DL) because he believes in both the fundamentals and the technique in the player. He could get me to the next level.
"The University of Louisville is in my hometown. They're recruiting me as an HB/TE/DE but I would probably want to play defense."
James has official visits set for Nebraska (9/11), Clemson (10/22) and says he wants to visit Oklahoma after the season.