Norcross (GA) Atlanta Christian School linebacker Tyler Cooksey (6-3, 220 pounds) learned of his offer from NC State in January and an assistant coach has made a strong impression on him.
When coaches visit high schools they aren't able to speak at length with prospects but introductions and brief pleasantries are generally okay.
"When I met Coach Nielsen I don't know that I've ever had a stronger handshake in my life," a laughing Cooksey told Pack Pride.
That was about the extent of that first meeting.
"He's a big guy. He's a very intense guy and that was my first impression of him. I do have an offer from them. I believe that was in the middle of January when I got that. I met them right after Thanksgiving and didn't talk much after that but Coach Nielsen came back this semester.
"We started talking a little more and then on the phone. They said they wanted to create a better relationship with me. He told me it would take a little while to get an offer but the next day I talked to him and he told me about the offer."
Offers are aplenty for Cooksey these days. Georgia Tech, Boston College, Tennessee and Northwestern have offered him free rides. He's giving all of those schools his attention and is reading and listening to what everyone has to say.
"I don't know a ton about NC State and I haven't looked at the campus yet. I'm looking forward to getting up there to see it. I haven't had the opportunity to do that yet. I think I'm planning on going up for a spring practice though."
Cooksey visited Boston College and Georgia Tech for junior days and he was scheduled to be at UNC this past weekend. Spring practices at Georgia, NCSU, Northwestern and Duke will cap off the pre-summer schedule and then a new phase will begin.
The recruit's father is Tom Cooksey and he played at Georgia Tech.
"I love Georgia Tech. Growing up I went to all the games and it's always been a family thing. There's always been a feeling of leaving where you grew up though. I haven't decided if I want to do that. The one thing that's holding me back is a feeling of wanting to get away. People are wondering why I haven't committed to Georgia Tech since it's such a big thing for my family. I want to see what else is out there and what other schools can offer.
"It's not what other people want. It's what I want. It's how I feel in that environment and around the players and the whole package. My dad has always loved the idea of it though. It's been a dream of his for me to go to Tech. But he's always been, 'Tyler, if you want to go to another school it's fine.' He hasn't pressed me on it one bit at all. He wants to go through all this with me."
Cooksey's visit to Boston College took place during the blizzard that hit the Northeast and while that gave him an accurate picture of what winter can be like in the region it probably didn't help their chances.
"I'm not used to the snow. It was a lot of fun and I liked it more than I thought I would. It was interesting to see if you're thinking about going up there. It's cold."