Four-Star Visit

Charlie Strong was excited to get four-star Tallahassee safety Travis Blanks on campus last weekend for an unofficial visit. The talented 2012 prospect enjoyed his trip to Louisville, and gave Strong's program high marks.

Charlie Strong was excited to see 2012 four-star Tallahassee defensive back Travis Blanks at Louisville's game against Memphis Saturday.

Blanks, who holds offers from big-time programs like Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, Florida State and Notre Dame, traveled to Louisville for an unofficial visit with a friend to check out Strong's rising program and the visit high praise.

"It was a great trip," Blanks said. "That was my first time going up there. It was a great trip. I liked the city and loved the coaches. I bonded great with the coaches. Overall, I had a great trip."

Blanks came away impressed with Louisville's facilities, including a newly expanded Papa John's Cardinal Stadium.

Travis Blanks
"They have a lot of fan support and the stadium is nice," Blanks said. "They have great facilities. I liked the weight room. I liked everything pretty good."

Most importantly, Blanks, who recorded 85 tackles and four interceptions as a sophomore, liked the Louisville coaching staff.

"I bonded with pretty much all of them, but Coach Strong and Coach [Ron] Dugans are two of my favorite guys," Blanks said. "I felt like I bonded great with those guys and have a great relationship."

Dugans, UofL's wide receiver coach, serves as Blanks' primary recruiting contact. Dugans has done a great job building an early relationship with Blanks.

"I also have a friend on the team, offensive lineman Ryan Kessling, and we talk a bunch," Blanks said. "Coach Strong is changing the whole program around and putting discipline back in that the guys got away from on the field and in the classroom. I feel like Coach Strong is turning the program all the way around. That's a team to look out for the next four years."

Kessling, a reserve lineman from Tallahassee, told Blanks good things about the direction Strong has the Cardinals headed.

"He told me everything has changed since Coach Strong got to Louisville," Blanks said. "He said the players have a lot more respect for the coaching staff, they're a lot more disciplined and doing things right in the classroom. He told me Coach Strong has changed the whole program around."

Though he will have no shortage of college options, Strong made clear that Blanks is a top target for Louisville next year.

"He was excited to get me up there along with Coach Dugans," Blanks said. "He said they're looking forward to building a relationship with me and he said they would be recruiting me pretty hard. I'm looking forward to that. It is a school I'm interested in. I just want to know more about the people there."

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