Forte focused on two

Three-star Gulf Port (FL) Boca Ciega DE Julius Forte has narrowed his list to two programs. Forte has made all of his visits. Now, he's ready to sit down, weigh pros and cons and come up with a decision.

Forte,'s No. 56 defensive end prospect in the nation, recently eliminated Purdue and N.C. State from consideration. Over the weekend, Forte paid South Florida a visit and came away impressed with Jim Leavitt's Bulls' program.

"I just finished up visiting USF yesterday," Julius Forte said. "I like them but I'm still not quite sure what I'm going to do yet. It's between USF and Louisville as of now."

Forte liked what he saw in Tampa during his visit.

"It's a good program," Forte said. "They're growing and getting stronger. They're doing great for their short football history. I think they're moving at a rapid pace and doing good things. They have great coaches. I love the coaching staff. It just seems like a good place right now."

Forte visited Louisville in October and counts UofL linebacker commit Mike Privott as a ‘friend.' He's been recruited by Louisville assistant Tony Alford and has developed a strong relationship with the Cards running back coach.

Since visiting Louisville during the season, the Cardinals have had a turbulent off-season. Defensive coordinators Ron English and his replacement, Bill Miller, have left the program to pursue other jobs at Eastern Michigan and Kansas, respectively. Though Forte wasn't aware of Miller's departure, he said it wouldn't really be a factor in his upcoming decision.

"The program will still be the (same) program with or without him," Forte said.

Will staying close to home be a big factor in Forte's decision?

"That's not a primary concern," said Forte. "I'm more concerned with finding a school that I have a good level of comfort with. That's it really just somewhere I can see myself in that program."

Does either Louisville or South Florida have an edge heading down the stretch in the battle to land Forte's signature next month?

"Somewhat but it's not an incredible standout," Forte said.

So which program ‘somewhat' stands out, Julius?

"USF," Forte said. "I'm going through the pros and cons and I'll make a decision soon."

Forte said he didn't know when he would be ready to announce a decision but indicated it could come later this week.

Cardinal Authority Top Stories