Henderson Names a Favorite

The Tigers have ramped up their recruiting on the offensive line, and it's now starting to pay dividends. Mario Henderson, a 6'7, 330 pound nightmare to defensive linemen has gone on record with his favorite school. Could it be the Clemson Tigers?

OT Mario Henderson
6'7, 330, 5.3
Lehigh Senior High School
Fort Myers, Florida

The Tigers need help on the offensive line in the 2003 class and offensive tackle Mario Henderson looks like he may be able to provide it. Henderson is a dominating offensive tackle prospect that has unlimited potential in estimation of most recruiting experts. He has outstanding size, good strength, and an excellent knowledge of the game.

Henderson has gone on record with his top 5 schools for the last few weeks, but only now have things really started to take shape. Henderson has been hearing from a whole range of schools, but now is the time where he'll start setting up official visits and narrowing things down. Here's what one of Florida's finest prospects had to say to CUTigers.com.

Mario, thanks for taking the time to speak us, first off tell us how things have been going for you this season?
Henderson: Real good. Right now we are 7-1. I've been doing really good, grading out around 80% on average. We are a vote or two away from being ranked, they have us at 6-1, but we've already won 7 games. We've got more games then the playoffs start.

What are your latest vital stats?
Henderson: I'm 6'7, 330 pounds, I can bench 325, and I run a 5.3 40-yard dash.

Which schools are recruiting you the hardest right now?
Henderson: Clemson, N.C. State, Louisville, and probably Pittsburgh. I've been getting a lot of different calls right now. All of those schools have offered me, and Florida has too.

So which schools would compose your top 5?
Henderson: My top 5 right now would be Clemson, N.C. State, N.C. State, Louisville, Pittsburgh.

Have you made it to any college football games this year?
Henderson: Yes sir, I went to the Florida State-Miami game. It was a great game. I haven't been anywhere else.

I've seen that you've talked about Clemson being your top school, is that the case right now?
Henderson: Yes sir it is. I like the opportunity to play early, and I especially like Brad Scott. I just like the way he's talked to me and get along really well. I also know Duane Coleman, I've played a lot of basketball against him.

Are there any other Clemson coaches in touch with you?
Henderson: The offensive line coach, Ron West. I've talked to him a little bit.

What are the nature of those conversations?
Henderson: They really just start talking about me having the opportunity to play early. He just told me to keep my grades up and that I'd have a good chance to play early at the tackle position.

You've already set up your official visit to Clemson for January 10th, have you set any other visits yet?
Henderson: No sir, not yet. A lot of other coaches have called and given me dates, and then they've said that they'll get back with me. I'm set to go to Clemson January 10th. I'd like to get up to one of their games, but I probably won't make it up until January.

Which schools will get those visits?
Henderson: Well, I might not go to Florida because I've been there so much, mainly just my top 5 schools that are out of state. I want to get out and have some fun.

Have you been watching Clemson on television this year?
Henderson: Yes sir, I watched them against N.C. State, Florida State, and Georgia. Well the first thing is that they are a young team. I think they are playing pretty good; they are just young right now. All they need to get it together is a few years. They've got some good, young, talented players on their team. They are going to be there in a year two. I know Hamilton is a good receiver- he's real good.

Are there any areas you feel like you need to improve on before you get into school next year?
Henderson: Yeah, I really want to get my speed down a little bit more and work on my pass protection. When you in college, the ends are going to be a lot faster. All the guys we play in high school run a 5-man front, I pass block on the tackle and the back kicks out the end, but in college they usually run a 4-3 defense, so I'll have to work on pass blocking the ends, and they'll be a lot faster. Most of the time this year I've just been doing straight up run blocking.

We'd like to conclude by thanking Mario for speaking with us. We will continue to keep you updated on his performance throughout the end of the season, but as it stands right now, the Tigers are in prime position with one of Florida's top offensive linemen.

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