One of the Maryland area’s foremost class of 2016 talents, McDonogh’s (Owings Mills, Md.) Eric Burrell, is starting to gain more traction on the recruiting trail. The 6-foot, 170-pound three-star safety/receiver pulled his sixth offer from Wake Forest in late December, and has since been in touch with numerous college assistants via Twitter and social media.
“Wake Forest was my latest offer when their one coach direct messaged me on Twitter, and I hit him up and he told me he loved my film; wanted to give me a scholarship; and wanted to get me on campus. So that was pretty cool,” Burrell said. “But then, like, Notre Dame, they just hit me up [Jan. 15], and said I’m one of their top guys. A Rutgers coach, he’s on me heavy, and so is UNC a little bit.
“It’s really a bunch of schools, but mainly right now these [assistants] are saying they want to get the 2015 class squared away, and then they’re going to start focusing on 2016 guys. So right now it’s just staying in touch, but not a whole lot of new offers yet.”
In addition to Wake, Burrell holds early verbals from the likes of Virginia, Virginia Tech, Duke, Boston College and Old Dominion. He said coaches from all six suitors maintain contact and want him to visit.
“I really haven’t visited anywhere yet, and all these schools want me to see their campuses,” Burrell said. “I’m trying to set up dates now for this spring. Duke, I definitely want to get down their for a junior day. I’m trying to get down to UVA, because Coach [Mike] London keeps pressing me. The Virginia Tech coach wants me there, and the Wake coach wants me there too. “
Since Burrell has not seen any schools besides hometown Maryland, he’s uncomfortable claiming any leaders or standouts at this point. At this juncture, he’s giving the company line of “every school that’s interested in me, I’m interested in.”
“Basically I just have to take some visits and then see where things stand after that,” Burrell said. “I want to be somewhere where I fit in well with the team, where I’ll get an opportunity to play, and see what my family thinks too. Things like distance, coaching staff and that kind of stuff really doesn’t matter to me. It’s more about comfort level than anything.”
One school that’s curiously missing from Burrell’s initial list is nearby Maryland, where two of his teammates currently attend (Roman Braglio, Josh Woods), one more is about to sign with (Ellis McKennie), and another has an offer from (Jordan McNair). Burrell, though, is still in a holding pattern with the Terps.
“Obviously they want to see more out of me. Basically what they’re saying is they want to see what I do on film my senior year,” Burrell said. “Ellis, Josh, Roman, they all say they love Maryland and how they’d love for me to join them there, but I can’t really do anything about that. It’s not really an option for me right now.
“I mean, Roman, he’s actually in the weight room right now [Jan. 15], and he was just talking about how much he likes it there, and how I need to come up for a visit. But, you know, I’ve got to see what happens.”
Burrell went on to say that he’s not completely clear on what UMD’s staff is looking for from him. The McDonogh product said he thought he performed well at a June 28 UMD camp last summer, drawing praise from the coaches, but hasn’t heard too much since. (One glaring reason is probably because he ran a 4.8-second 40-yard dash at the camp).
“You know, I’m still in touch with Coach [Keith] Dudzinski from Maryland, though I haven’t talked to him too much recently,” Burrell said. “He’s actually supposed to be here [Jan. 16] to watch us work out and stuff, but I’m going to be at track so I won’t get to see him.
“But I text Coach Dud every now and then; I texted him just [Jan. 15] actually to let him know I was thinking about going to Maryland’s basketball game against Michigan State [Jan. 17]. So, you know, he’s a cool guy and we stay in touch, but they haven’t offered yet.”
If said scholarship is eventually presented, Burrell said he’d “surely” consider it. He said he hopes to impress the staff during a camp this summer, and if not then, then after sending out senior film.
“[Maryland] is an offer I’m looking for. It’s a school I know, and it’s a school I like,” Burrell said. “I’ve seen games there, went to a camp there, been on campus – it’s a good place. And obviously I know a lot of people there too.”
Burrell mentioned that he’s mainly being recruited as a safety right now, though if he grows another inch or two and lowers his 40 time he could move to cornerback. The McDonogh athlete also stars at receiver, but mentioned not many college coaches have recruited him for that position.
“As a receiver, I just go get the football. I attack the ball – that’s my main strength there,” Burrell said. “And defensively, I’m just a good all-around defender and tackler. I like to think I cover a lot of ground and have a nose for the ball.”
Currently, Burrell is running the 4-by-2 and doing the high jump for the McDonogh track team. He said the high jump is his main event, and he’s reached as high as 62 inches.
“It’s been a good offseason so far,” Burrell said. “I run track four days a week and then have meets on Fridays. And in-between that I’ve been working out, lifting and getting ready for next [football] season.”
Burrell Gaining Traction On Recruiting Trail
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