Josh Minton is a six-foot-two, 240 pound mass of muscle, who anchors the defense for Pulaski Southwestern High School in Somerset, Kentucky. His list of schools looks like a Who's Who in college football. Kentucky is in the mix, but they've got a lot of company and a lot of competition.
His summer has been filled with nothing but camps, weight lifting, and practices. But Minton doesn't mind. "Summer has been great, I mean, of course, you're worrying about college and everything," said Minton. "I had just tried to get through summer practices and try to learn how to be a leader and just do what I can for my team, while '?m still here."
Being a leader is what Minton has been working most at this summer. "I think that I could always lead by example, but it's harder to learn how to be more of a critic to other people, and still be able to celebrate with them and just be a good teammate." Criticizing and being more of a vocal leader is something Minton found very hard to do. "They could take it negatively if youare not doing it the right way. That definitely takes a lot of work. I think that?s what I have progressed at the most."
We sometimes wonder if recruits really comprehend the process that they're going through. Minton is having the time of his life, which is the way it should be. "I have partially enjoyed it. Sometimes, it has gotten hectic, but it has been fun. It is still kind of unbelievable, knowing that I'm going to be playing for a big college someday, but like I said it's been really enjoyable."
While taking in the camp circuit this summer, Minton has been impressed by a couple of schools. "I was impressed by Virginia Tech and the stability in the program. I think that the coaches have been there for a while, and they have a good relationship with the players. I think that's what it's all about, before you can start winning you have to have a good relationship with your coaches. I think that's what definitely stood out about the Hokies."
Urban Meyer also left an impression on Minton. "Florida is definitely a program on the rise. They have a new coach and I think he's going to bring more discipline back to the program. I think they are going to be a great team."
And fear not Kentucky fans. The Wildcats make Minton's list. "I would say Kentucky is also a program on the rise. They have good coaches, and I think that they are making more of the position changes that will help them, like going back to the 4-3 defense. You have to match your personnel to your defense, and I think they have realized that now and have switched it up." Being the home state, Kentucky may have a slight advantage. "I think Kentucky has always been on the list. You know, it's pretty much all Big Blue down in Somerset. I've always rooted for them so I think I'm trying to definitely give them a good, hard look."
Let me warn you, UK fans, and that is whether or not Rich Brooks and his staff are at Kentucky next year will play a big part in Minton's decision-making process. "I would say that in some sorts it does, because I have developed a pretty good relationship with coach Chuck Smith. So if they weren't there, it would be like starting with a clean slate. I would have a new coach that I would have to get used to and then decide if I'm comfortable with them and they would have to recruit me all over again."
No matter what school is recruiting Minton, they all pretty much have the same idea about what position he should play. "Florida basically wanted to give me a year and get some weight and play the three technique on the inside defensive tackle. But other than that, most schools have been wanting me to play at the defensive end position, depending on what kind of defense they're running." Defensive end is where Minton wants to play. His list also includes Georgia, Alabama, Auburn, Oklahoma, LSU, and Louisville.