Brandon Ellerbe is grateful for the invitation to attend Clemson University for free. He makes no secret of the fact that he's very much aware of where his skills on the football field can take him.
"I feel I'm very blessed to have that opportunity to play on the next level and they pay for my education," he said. "I appreciate it all. But, right now, it's a hard decision.
"I'm still stuck on Clemson right now, but I'm afraid something might change before signing day."
Along with Clemson, North Carolina, Maryland, Texas Tech and Duke have all offered. Southern California, California, N.C. State and Wake Forest could have offers on the way too.
"The more schools that keep on coming, overall it's going to make it hard for me to decide where I want to go," he said.
"My defensive (coaches) said you need to take Brandon (on offense). About 1,400 yards and 15 touchdowns later, we were in the state semi-finals. He really helped turn our season around…he was just an instant impact for us." - Anson head coach Larry Hyatt. (Hale McGranahan)
"For one, it was my dream school. I've been looking at them since I was little," he said.
"When I was little, I didn't even know they were out of state. That doesn't bother me. I want to get away from home, but not too far away from home."
It's that orange helmet with the paw logo that makes Clemson look an awful lot like Anson.
"I think of them as the Bearcats," Ellerbe said.
Anson Bearcat coach Luke Hyatt found himself in need of a running back three games into this past season.
"My defensive (coaches) said you need to take Brandon (on offense). About 1,400 yards and 15 touchdowns later, we were in the state semi-finals. He really helped turn our season around…he was just an instant impact for us," Hyatt said.
"We don't make it to the state semi-finals without Brandon Ellerbe at tailback for us."
On offense this fall, Ellerbe will line up under center at quarterback. He'll be utilized as both a runner and passer.
Recruited to play safety in college, Hyatt believes that Ellerbe will be special playing any position at the next level.
"If I had to sign today, it would be a hard decision," Ellerbe told CUTigers.com. (Hale McGranahan)
This fall, Ellerbe attended his first game at Death Valley, imagining himself as a safety, wide receiver—whatever position, just as a Clemson Tiger.
"I wasn't nervous or anything, but I got to looking at all that orange and trying visualize myself on the field," Ellerbe said. "When I started doing that, I was catching butterflies. It's the atmosphere. I love it and all. Like I said, it makes me think about them Bearcats."
The home state Tar Heels are making a heavy push, though.
"If I had to sign today, it would be a hard decision," he said.
Defensive tackles coach Dan Brooks is Ellerbe's main recruiter to Clemson.
"We talk once every two or three weeks," Ellerbe said. "He likes to checks up on me and my school. He asks about my family and what all is going on my way. He tells me that they need me down there at Clemson. The way I see it, I'm like any other player."