One of the most intriguing local prospects in the Class of 2013 is Shawnee Mission (KS) East quarterback Jordan Darling.
A 6-foot-4, 230-pound signal caller with a rocket arm, Darling recently transferred in to the Kansas City metropolitan area after spending the past year at Waco (TX) Midway - but he found himself on the radar of the Kansas Jayhawks well before he and his family made the transition.
Darling received an offer from Head Coach Charlie Weis and his staff in late February, and since has remained in close contact with quarterbacks coach Ron Powlus. Saturday, he and his father made the short jaunt to Lawrence, Kan. to take in spring practice with the Jayhawks.
Of particular interest to Darling, obviously, were the quarterbacks - particularly senior transfer Dayne Crist. Powlus has compared him to the former Notre Dame quarterback in terms of his size and arm strength.
"It was a good experience," Darling said. "I got to see their intensity and watch the quarterbacks throw. I really enjoyed watching Dayne Crist throw, a big, tall, strong guy. And he can throw the football, I'll tell you what."
To his eyes, that Crist enjoys so much familiarity with Weis is looking to be a big advantage for the Kansas offense.
"He clearly knew the system," Darling noted. "Coach Weis would literally give him one small hand signal, wouldn't have to say any extra words, and he'd call out a ridiculously long play."
After the practice, he spent some time individually with Powlus (he also had the chance to meet Weis formally for the first time), and the two discussed his recruitment.
The Kansas coaches want him to go wherever he's happiest, Darling said, though they obviously hope that's in Lawrence. However, his happiness and comfort level are paramount.
"It shows what a great person Coach Powlus is, and Coach Weis included," he said. "When Coach Powlus said that to me, I realized he genuinely cared about me, not just as a football player but getting into the University of Kansas and achieving my goals. It felt great."
Later this month, Darling will return to Kansas for the program's spring game, and while he's playing his recruitment by ear at the moment, no other visits have been set.