It looks like Denzel McCoy will be one of the most sought after defensive linemen for the 2010 class. With 29 offers already, the Duluth, GA product has seen his recruitment get off to a rapid start. The 6'4" 272 pound athlete says this whole thing is something he'd never imagine would happen.
"Recruiting is going great right now," explained McCoy. "I have 29 offers now. Growing up I never thought I'd be in this position. It truly is a blessing and an honor."
Several of the nation's top BCS programs have offered Denzel, and many others are in the process of evaluating him at this time. McCoy told NoleDigest that at this time there are no favorites and that he'll look at each and every school that offers him a scholarship.
"Florida State, Cal, Penn State, Auburn, LSU, Notre Dame, North Carolina, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Oregon and Tennessee are the schools that have offered me so far," said McCoy. "Georgia, Clemson, Nebraska, Arkansas and others are evaluating me at this time."
"Coming into this process I've never had a favorite or top school," continued McCoy. "Honestly it is too hard to right now with all of these choices. Everyone is in the same position. Right now I am as open as a book to all of these schools."
Last month Denzel made his first visit to FSU when he attended FSU's first Junior Day of 2009. Leading up to the visit Denzel had spoken to several of the Seminole coaches; with the visit he wanted to get the chance to see what the program had to offer. According to McCoy the visit was nearly flawless.
"I went to FSU's Junior Day at the end of January," McCoy said, "and I loved it. I was my first time ever visiting there. The people there are what really stood out to me. Even though there were well over 100 kids there the coaches made sure they showed everyone personal attention. I really felt that Coach Haggins, Coach Fisher and Coach Amato really want me there. I liked FSU before the visit so I wanted to go there to get a more in-depth look at them. While they couldn't show me everything I was impressed with what I saw. Between the program, the support for the players, the graduation rates and the coaches, I had a great time."
Coach Haggins has been Denzel's primary recruiter to date, and he says the two have hit it off very well. The fact that Coach Haggins is up front and honest with him is what makes McCoy think highly of the Seminole defensive line coach.
"I love Coach Haggins," said McCoy of the FSU coach. "He is cool and he tells me the truth about things. To be honest we can talk about anything. Rarely do we talk just about football. He and Coach Fisher always ask me about me personally, about school, academics and my family. We have some in-depth conversations. In terms of the football stuff he tells me he'd really like to coach me. We've built a great relationship. Both me and my family really like the coaches at FSU."
When Denzel was in town for FSU's Junior Day he built a relationship with some of FSU's other top targets, primarily with Byrnes standouts Brandon Willis and Corey Miller. Since the visit he says the trio has stayed in contact on a regular basis.
"When I was down at FSU I talked to Brandon Willis and Corey Miller a lot," explained McCoy. "We had a great time together and we've stayed in contact since. I also hung out with Ed Christian from Lowndes. The four of us were joking around and just having fun together. It was a great time."
Denzel doesn't know an exact date yet but he does plan on making his decision before the start of his senior season. His reasoning is that he wants to focus solely on his last year in high school both off and on the field.
"I'm going to try and commit before the season starts," said McCoy. "This is my last year of high school so I want to focus on leaving something here along the way. I want to help my team reach that next level and just enjoy my senior year. Getting this done will help me with all of that."
The talented defensive lineman is bigger than most guys at his position, but he says that doesn't interfere with his play. He told NoleDigest that he feels he does some things well, but overall he has a lot of things he wants to work on.
"I'm taller than most defensive linemen but I know how to use my arms to keep guys off of me," explained McCoy. "I like to hit, and I really use my arms to get that extension to read and react. My height is an advantage sometimes because even when I get low I can still see over the linemen and make plays. Also, I can read blocks well so that helps me understand what the offense is doing. I want to focus on getting a better first step and rounding out my game overall because it can be better. I'm 272 pounds now so I am not really focused on adding weight. I'd like to get to 280, but in college I will let the coaches and trainers work me to where they want me to be."
Comfort is going to be the biggest factor in terms of Denzel's decision. He has a small list of attributes he's looking for in a school.
"I'm just looking for comfort and hospitality from these schools," McCoy said, "as well as the relationship I have with the coaches. I want to enjoy the town, and I want to play for a school that wins the right way. My position coach is very important. I want him to not only prepare me for football, but also for the rest of my life."
Denzel doesn't have any set plans to make any more visits at this time except for maybe a visit to Clemson this weekend and visits to FSU for their spring game and Seminole Showtime. Stay tuned to NoleDigest for further updates with Denzel, as well as the rest of the 2010 recruiting class.