Daniels Almost a Blue Devil

The recruiting momentum of the early spring continued for Duke on Saturday with the commitment of one Georgia star. In a few days that momentum could add another Peach state standout.

"I am really loving my time here at Duke," said Fayetteville (Ga.) Fayette County High School safety Matt Daniels. "The academics are the best you can find and the whole program just feels right. I think Duke is where I need to be."

Spending time with players such as John Talley, Chris Davis, and Evalio Harrell after watching the Blue Devils' spring scrimmage on Saturday was enough to vault Duke to the top of Daniels' list - however a full out commitment hasn't happened...yet.

"I'm going to go home and talk with my parents about it, but I think you can bet on me going to Duke. They want me to come here and I really feel comfortable with everything about it. The defensive backs have been really cool to hang out with, and I've spent the weekend really getting the inside scoop on it all. I'm sold."

In high school Daniels plays on both sides of the ball. As a junior he rushed 200 times for more than 1,300 yards and 20 TDs for Fayette County. Defensively he's a ferocious hitter at the safety position, logging 40 tackles, 26 assists, and one interception in 2006.

He's being recruited by assistant coach Glenn Spencer to come in and play safety.

"Right now that is the plan. When I get here I'm going to play safety. I'm 6'1 and 195 pounds, and my best forty is 4.47. I also talked to Coach Gutekunst - my position coach. He's tough, and will get on you when you need a kick in the butt, but he also rewards you when you play well. I am very comfortable with him."

After watching practice, and before heading out with Talley, Davis, and Harrell, Daniels had a chance to sit down with head coach Ted Roof who was excited by the prospect's level of interest.

"He told me to make sure I was 100% sure on everything. He want me to commit, but when I do he wants it to be firm. I'm going to talk it over with my parents and then I'll look at making it official."

With an offer from both Indiana and Georgia Tech as well as interest from Tennessee, Wake Forest, and Auburn, Daniels has been feeling the crunch of the recruiting process - something he's looking forward to putting behind him.

"There has been a lot of pressure on me from a lot of angles. I hear people telling me that Duke isn't a good program and I should go somewhere else. But I am sure that Duke is a program that is ready to really take a step up and soon. It'll be a relief to get all of this behind me.

Daniels reports a perfect 4.0 grade point average.


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