Yandell: "Hoping I can decide soon"

Clyde Yandell, the mammoth offensive lineman from Nease High School in St. Augustine, Fla., now has 23 scholarship offers under his belt after a recent offer from N.C. State.

Clyde Yandell, the mammoth offensive lineman from Nease High School in St. Augustine, Fla., now has 23 scholarship offers under his belt after a recent offer from N.C. State. Currently claiming offers from major programs such as Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech, Florida, Tennessee, Maryland, and Nebraska, the 6'5¼", 290 lb. senior states that "Georgia Tech is high on my list of offers I have." His high school teammate Mario Butler has already committed to Georgia Tech, which he considers "a bonus in their favor that I would know someone there if I wanted to go there."

After finishing the 2005 season with a 13-2 record and 4-A State Championship, Clyde and his Panther teammates are excited to defend their title and have lofty expectations for the 2006 season. "Winning District, beating our rivals, and defending our State Title are our goals this year."

The biggest difference between the 2005 season and the 2006 season for Clyde is that he's switching from the defensive line to the offensive line. That's a difficult transition for some players, but not the case for him. "It's fine; I already made the move a long time ago because I played offensive line in our spring game and we pretty much do things year round. I've been with the offensive line since the beginning of January so I feel pretty comfortable with it by now."

Clyde has participated in several summer camps and made quite a few unofficial visits this summer. He displayed his skills in summer camps at Notre Dame, Michigan, Wake Forrest and Florida while also making unofficial visits to Northwestern, UNC, Duke, and Auburn.

As much time as he's spent on the road touring schools and attending summer camps, he's been spending an equal amount of time in the weight room preparing for his senior season. "I've gotten a lot stronger this summer and lost some weight. I've gotten quicker and faster and all those things have really been helping me. I can really feel a difference in practices and scrimmages." While he's gotten stronger and leaner this summer, he still feels he can continue to improve his game by "perfecting techniques" and "gaining experience."

At present, Clyde hasn't singled out a favorite school, and is waiting to see if Notre Dame and Michigan approach him with offers before sitting down to make a final decision. The OL recruit will get to see one of these two programs in action when the Fighting Irish visit Bobby Dodd Stadium next month. "I'm planning on going up to visit with Mario Butler and watch the opening game September 2nd between Tech and Notre Dame in Atlanta. It will be a chance for me to finally see things there."

After watching the season opener for the Yellow Jackets, who he feels has "a lot of good things going on with them," Clyde may be closer to narrowing his list of 23 schools. He hasn't "set an official deadline or anything, but I'm hoping I can decide soon, maybe sometime in September."

Clyde obviously holds a high opinion of Georgia Tech's football program, stating that "the nine straight bowl games is great and they're always competitive in a tough conference which is good. In addition to my teammate going there, they're having a really good recruiting class so all those things are in their favor."

Although he claims to have been in contact with Buddy Geis, Joe D'Alessandris, and Chan Gailey, Clyde's trip to Atlanta in September will be his first visit to the Georgia Tech campus. He hopes to tour the campus to determine "how much I like the coaching staff, the campus and the college itself." These things will certainly influence his decision on which school to attend, as well as "the best combination of academics and athletics I can find" and "where I see myself fitting in the best." Academics are important to Clyde as he currently maintains a 3.5 GPA and is already fully qualified.

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