Danny Parker Tripping To Duke

As the summer rolls along, several targets on the Duke recruiting board will continue to find their way to Durham for unofficial visits. The latest to make the trip to see the Duke facilities up close is Good Counsel's Danny Parker. Parker, who projects as either a tight end or defensive end says he's looking forward to meeting the coaches of the program that has recruited him from the start.

"I'm heading down to North Carolina to check out Duke, North Carolina, and NC State," says Good Counsel standout defensive end Danny Parker. "I am hoping I can make a verbal commitment to a school by the start of our two-a-day practices, so I need to see all the ones recruiting me."

With those practices beginning on August 8th, Parker knows he has a good deal of traveling ahead of him if he wants to see all there is to see. Especially since he's already holding offers from the Blue Devils as well as Miami (Ohio), Marshall, Virginia, South Carolina, Syracuse, and Rutgers.

"At this point I have a good number of offers, but I am still open to everyone. I probably will start narrowing the list in the next few weeks though. I am hopeful I can get it done by the time we start practice – but if not I'll at least have it down to five schools by then."

Duke was one of the first schools to throw a scholarship offer at Parker, and that early love has paid off for head coach Ted Roof and company.

"Duke has been showing me love from the very start of the process. Coach O'Brien texts me all the time and is always in touch as much as he is allowed to be. They have been there from day one and the situation there is really something I'm interested in. I could go to Duke, get a degree that will be the best possible, and have a chance to play really early in my career. That's a lot of positives."

With academics being a major factor in the recruiting equation, Parker has some other variables that need to be met.

"I want to go somewhere that I can get a great education, and somewhere that is one the rise and able to go to bowl games. I also want to be really comfortable with the coaching staff."

Parker began his high school career on the hardwood before the recruiting efforts of the football coaching staff won out.

"They just saw me working out one day and asked me to try out for football. Once I got on the field it just felt like something I could do well. So I got in the weight room and started to add weight as quickly as I could. It was important for me to get a lot stronger than I was when I played basketball."

Parker quickly put on close to 20 pounds to reach 6-foot-5 and 230 pounds while elevating his weight room max out numbers to 315 pounds on the bench press; 475 pounds on the squat; and 245 pounds on the power clean. Despite the added weight he can still rise up, with a 33" vertical jump.

Some of the schools are projecting him as a tight end, while others favor him lining up as an end on the defensive line. Either way suits Parker just fine.

"Both positions are a lot of fun for me. All the North Carolina schools are recruiting me as a tight end, though Duke told me I could play either one. I don't really have a preference. At tight end you can make a lot of plays, but as a D-end you get to hit people a lot – that's probably the best part about football."

Parker will be on campus at Duke beginning Tuesday for an unofficial visit.

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