4 Star LB Visited Duke; Eyes Decision

When he took over, head coach David Cutcliffe made it clear that Duke could complete in big time recruiting battles. And that there were players who could handle the requirements on the field as well as those off the field in Durham. Recently the Duke coach hosted the nation's No. 7 outside linebacker for a visit.

"I went down to see Duke with my uncle, said Frederick (Md.) Johnson High stanout Nick Forbes. "It was a chance to make a quick unofficial visit, and to talk with Coach Cutcliffe about the program, the school, and things like that. It was a spur of the moment thing."

While last second unofficial visits are hardly anything unique in the recruiting world, it is certainly notable when a four star linebacker who is considered one of the 10 best in the country at his position decides to visit Duke. Perhaps it's a validation of the job Cutcliffe and his staff are doing. Perhaps it's a sign that times are changing in Durham.

"I think the coaches are doing a great job there. When I talked with them I was really comfortable with them. They didn't pressure me. They didn't seem to be pushing me. They were just being honest and down to earth. The coaches are very easy to talk to and make you really comfortable."

At least comfortable enough to group the Blue Devils in a top handful of schools - with California, Pittsburgh, Wake Forest, West Virginia, and Virginia Tech. If it was a good idea to wager on recruiting, a safe bet appears to favor one of those programs earning Forbes' commitment.

"Those are the schools I'm really looking at right now. I would like to make a few more visits and then trim it down even more. Right now I am comfortable with those six. After I make a few more trips, I'll probably cut it some more and then I'll look for a decision."

And what's important for Forbes in a decision?

"The coaching staff and the player relationships. I also am looking for somewhere that will help me make a life after football. Even in the NFL, guys retire in their late 20s or sooner. I want to make sure that I've got options after football ends. Other than that it'll come down to where my family and I feel the most comfortable."

Sporting a 3.6 GPA and a 1030 (two part) SAT score, Forbes will have no trouble qualifying at any of the six schools on his list.

As a junior, Forbes was selected First Team All-Conference as a linebacker and running back, and 2nd Team All-State at inebacker. He was also named to the All-Area team and won the Area Defensive Player of the Year

Forbes finished his season with 96 total tackles, 67 solos, six tackles for loss, four sacks and two interceptions (one returned for a touchdown). Offensively, he had 143 rushes for 1,176 yards and 15 scores. He also caught eight balls for 81 yards.

He also competes in track (shot: 51-11, discus: 163-7), but only plans on playing football in college. The 4-star prospect reportsa bench-press max of 330-pounds, squat 475 and claims a 34-inch vertical jump.

Forbes was named to the Scout.com All-Combine Team for his performance at the Army All-American combine in January 2009.

When asked to describe himself as a player, Forbes reported:

"I cover the field from sideline-to-sideline and play very aggressive. I'm a leader on the defense and go hard every play. I'm always going after the ball and never stop."

"I definitely want to make bigger hits though. There's been a few times where I hit a guy and didn't get the kind of impact I wanted. I want to be able to make that big hit…an impact type hit."


The Devils Den Top Stories