At 6-foot-2, 218 pounds, Mattie T. Blout HS defensive end Willie Bohannon isn't the prototypical size for an upper echelon defensive line recruit at the next level, but statistically he's proven time and time again that means very little.
The Mobile (Ala.) native garnered 70 tackles, 18 sacks as a sophomore and followed that up with a 57 tackle, 15 sack junior campaign despite teams focusing in on keeping him under control.
"I think the thing with me is technique," Bohannon said. "I'm trying to get up to 230, which would be the biggest I'd ever be. I'm around 218, right now. I played up at the varsity level as a freshmen and I was 185, then. I had to be really good at technique and at perfecting myself as a player. If it wasn't for that, you wouldn't be talking to me, right now, that's for sure."
Sporting offers from SEC schools Kentucky and Alabama, in addition to an offer from nearby Louisiana-Lafayette, Bohannon has seen his stock rise through the summer months.
He recently camped in Tuscaloosa (Ala.) for its annual football camp. "It was good," Bohannon said of his trip. "Three of the offensive lineman that they offered, I went up against, and I did my thing against."
"This has probably been, like, my 3rd or 4th time I have been up (to Alabama)," the talented defensive end said about his trip. "Everything's so close together. Even though it s a big school, all the stuff I'll be involved in is close together."
Despite the obvious affinity for the Crimson Tide and the opportunity to stay in-state, Bohannon insists he's not sold yet on making a verbal commitment.
"I really like Alabama, alot, but I'm gonna wait a little bit longer," Bohannon contested. "They are definitely one of my favorites. It's an in-state, school that alot of my friends know about and go to school at, and it's close by (to Mobile)."
"I've also got offers from Kentucky and Louisiana-Lafayette," Bohannon said. "I really like Kentucky, they are one of my favorites, too. I've never been up there, but I really like the coaches and the coaching staff. I talk to their defensive coordinator and defensive line coach, alot, and I like them. The thing with Kentucky, is it's so far away. I'd still like to go see them and take a trip up there. Despite the fact it's so far away, they are still a favorite of mine."
Bohannon said all of the SEC schools have stopped in or contacted him and several other top programs across the country have attempted to make an in-road.
"LSU, Louisville, Auburn, Florida State, Ole Miss have talked to me and Mississippi State has been sending me alot of letters, but I haven't talked to them," Bohannon stated. "I've got interest from all of the schools in the SEC. The schools that have been recruiting me the hardest are Louisville, Kentucky, Alabama and FSU."
Bohannon sized up Louisville and Florida State.
"I've watched Louisville on television, alot," the standout admitted. "They are an up-and-coming program, like Kentucky. I like that. Florida State is just a great school and I like their coaches."
The talented senior-to-be was awarded honorable mention All-State as a sophomore and junior at Blount, and first team All-Region his junior campaign. He recently scored a 21 on his ACT.