2012 Prospect Watch

With an excellent 2011 recruiting class complete, Charlie Strong and his Louisville staff now are starting to turn their attention to the Class of 2012. The Cardinals have made several offers recently, and InsideTheVille.com identifies four prospects to watch, including one of the top defensive line prospects in the South.

Martin Aiken is one of the hottest defensive line prospects in the Class of 2012. The South Carolina native has been picking up scholarship offers left and right, and Aiken's latest offer comes from Charlie Strong.

Besides Louisville, the 6-3, 240-pound three-star prospect also holds offers from Auburn, Clemson, Colorado, Duke, East Carolina, Florida Atlantic, Georgia Tech, Illinois, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas Tech, Tulane, Virginia Tech, and Wake Forest.

"I am open to everyone right now," Aiken told Scout.com. "I won't be making a favorites list for a while – I'm going to wait until the summer at least."

Louisville offers top RB

Mike Davis is one of the top running back prospects in the southeast and his offer sheet proves the point.

Mike Davis
Besides an offer this week from Louisville, the 5-11, 195-pound back also has offers from Clemson, South Carolina, Tennessee, Memphis, Georgia Tech, Vanderbilt, Florida, FSU, UCF, South Florida, Louisville, Penn State, and North Carolina. Davis, who runs a 4.45 40, says he's wide-open at the moment.

"It doesn't matter because I will be choosing a school not a conference to play football and to attend school," said Davis, who rushed for 1,200 yards and 13 touchdowns as a junior.

Florida OL holds UofL offer

Louisville had two offensive line signees from Florida in their 2011 recruiting class – C Mike Romano and OG John Miller – and the Cardinals are after another Sunshine state line prospect.

Apopka, Florida lineman Ty Darlington holds an offer from Louisville. One of the top offensive linemen in the Florida, Darlington, 6-4, 270-pounds, also has scholarship offers from Auburn, Clemson, Colorado, Colorado State, UConn, Duke, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Iowa, Louisville, Marshall, Michigan State, Minnesota, Navy, North Carolina, Northern Illinois, Northwestern, Oklahoma, Rutgers, South Carolina, Texas Tech, Utah, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest, and Washington State.

"You will have a hard time finding a better center prospect anywhere in the state." Scout.com's Mike Bakas said. "At 6-foot-4 and 270 pounds, Darlington is well built and very powerful inside. He's an explosive blocker and has quick enough feet to be good in pass pro, get to the second level, and things like that. He's the son of one of the best coaches at the prep level in Florida and is very sharp and understands the game very well. He has all the tools you look for in a quality center prospect and is already being recruited nationally."

Cards offer NC athlete

Germone Hopper
What position will Charlotte, NC athlete Germone Hopper play in college? That's a question college coaches are trying out about the 6-0, 175-pound Hopper. What coaches do know, apparently, is that they want him.

Hopper, who rushed for 1,359 yards and 18 touchdowns on 162 carries (8.6-yard average) and had 39 receptions for 465 yards and five scores during his junior season, has attracted nine verbal scholarship offers from Clemson, East Carolina, Kentucky, Louisville, Maryland, North Carolina, NC State, Virginia, and Virginia Tech.

"Most schools are recruiting me at slot [receiver], because they want to see me with the ball in open space," said Hopper, who is a teammate of key 2012 Louisville linebacker recruit Nick Dawson. "It really doesn't matter to me – as long as I'm going to school for free."

A speedy prospect, Hopper's personal best in the 100-meter dash is 10.68.

"We feed him the ball about 30-35 times a game whether its screens, passes, handoffs," Berry Academy assistant coach Jonathan Simmons told Scout.com. "You give him the ball and he eats up 20 yards in a heart beat and he can score from anywhere on the field. [Opponents] won't kick to him anymore."

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