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Chris Mayo was already going to be one of the most heavily recruited players in New Jersey's 2019 class, but the scope of his recruitment is about to become even bigger.
The 6-foot-5, 320-pound Mayo, who plays at Richland (N.J.) St. Augustine, is in the process of re-classifying into the 2020 class, which should lead to more opportunities for a player already holding offers from Tennessee, Syracuse and Virginia. The list could grow Tuesday as Mayo readies for a visit to Rutgers.
"Penn State, UCLA, Ohio State, Michigan State; those are a few I would definitely love to go visit and look at," Mayo said. "The only camp I'm considering is the Notre Dame camp because of my (fall) visit to Notre Dame and (offensive line) coach (Harry) Hiestand.
"Notre Dame was one of my dream schools ever since I was little. It's the whole idea of the history behind it, how die hard the fans are and the gold helmets. It all kind of mesmerized me as a little kid, and I always liked that."
Locally, Mayo is anxious for his return trip to Rutgers.
He visited prior to coach Chris Ash's arrival in Piscataway, and returned after Ash took over in Dec. 2015.
"I always liked the aggression and the toughness the team has," Mayo said. "It's gone through some tough times, it's gone through multiple coaching staffs, the whole scandal with the last head coach, I just like the toughness of the players.
"I've seen the same players the last two years as Rutgers, so they see something in the program. They like to stay and they would like to win some football games."
Mayo's recruitment figures to take plenty of twists and turns, and one interesting one came during the weekend when Tennessee offered through linebackers coach Tommy Thigpen.
"It really caught me off guard because Tennessee had never really shown interest in me," Mayo said. "He said what he saw on my tape, he liked a lot. He thought that would be good for Tennessee. He (likes) my aggression."
Mayo made a recent trip to Virginia, and it remains fresh in his mind.
"Everything kind of blew me away, like the history behind it, how community-based it was, how the coaching staff was very family oriented," Mayo said. "That was what stuck out to me the most, but since it was my first time on the campus, everything was kind of like a breath of fresh air. It was a new experience for me. I liked it a lot."
Coach Bronco Mendenhall is in his second season at the school after a lengthy and successful run at BYU, and the transition to Virginia was part of the recruiting pitch during Mayo's visit.
"He asked 14 people to come with him, and those 14 came with him," Mayo said. "That stuck out to me because it seems like the head coach is a good guy and they wanted to do good things for him. They all seem like really good people."
Mayo's latest visit was a Saturday trip to Temple, and he left impressed with practice.
"Their description of it was 'Controlled Chaos,' and I liked it a lot because it was energetic, music was playing, people were hitting," Mayo said. "I like that kind of practice."