Tyller Roberts catches eye of state's coaches

Mission Viejo (CA) All-American quarterback Mark Sanchez will remember the name Tyller Roberts for many years to come. Roberts left quite an impression on Southern Cal's prize recruit, coaches and fans alike with a pair of key interceptions that helped seal the victory for the good guys in the CaliFlorida All-Star Game in Miami.

"I really had a good time down there," Roberts said. "You just can't ask for a better group of players to represent our state. The streak was on, and we were set on keeping it going. We knew that they wouldn't be able to come out and steal one."

While the Orlando Edgewater All-State selection acknowledged the fine play of California wide receiver Desean Jackson, he was more impressed with the Florida group of receivers.

"There is no doubt our receivers impressed me the most," he said. "They were more aggressive. They took it as a challenge to beat you, and that was just in practice. You can't ask for more. Overall, I would say that (Fred) Rouse and (Cedric) McGee were the best on our team. They were tough every play."

Originally selected as a reserve for Team Florida, Roberts' solid pre-game practices and play against Sanchez, Jackson and the rest of the California All-Stars wasn't lost on college coaches around the state either.

"I've heard from a few of them since the game," he said. "One of the coaches at Miami said that they were running out of scholarships, but he wanted to see what they could do to free one up for me."

Prior to the CaliFlorida All-Star Game, the Canes hadn't shown any interest, but now they're keenly aware of just who Tyller Roberts is. Miami is looking to get him in for a visit. However, with limited scholarships available, it's doubtful unless something changes.

"Coach (Florida defensive coordinator, Charlie) Strong called me today and said that he'll be at my school tomorrow to see me," said the 6-1, 190-pound corner. "I don't know if he's coming with an offer or not, but if he is, Florida moves right to the top. I'll be visiting there on the 22nd regardless."

This is interesting because Strong and defensive backs coach Chuck Heater had visited Roberts prior to Edgewater's state finals game against Miami Killian, and told him that they would talk to him about scholarship opportunities when he came to Gainesville on the 22nd. While I'm not saying that Strong will come armed with a 'ship, it is obvious that his play pressed the Gators staff for another visit before his visit.

Roberts has also heard from North Carolina State, South Florida, and Central Florida since the game. Despite his desire to play in-state, the Wolfpack are trying hard to get Roberts to come to Raleigh for a visit. He is scheduled to visit Central Florida this weekend and South Florida on the 28th.

Roberts echoed statements that Avery Atkins had made to me about recruiting talk surrounding the game. "There just wasn't a lot of talk about that, really. Nobody was out there recruiting other guys. Everybody was there to have fun and beat the California team."

Tomorrow Roberts finds out just how Strong his impression was in Gator Country.

Fightin Gators Top Stories