Talented DB High on Miami

This talented defensive back prospect recently ran a 4.39 at one summer camp at 200 pounds. He talks a lot about the Hurricanes and why they're among his early favorites in this interview.

After successfully recruiting two players from the state of New York two years ago (Leon Williams and Brandon Sebald), the University of Miami did not land anyone from there in last year's recruiting class. It appears the Hurricanes are back this year, this time for Syracuse (Heninger) defensive back Travis Tolbert.

The standout defensive back recently attended summer camps at Syracuse and Rutgers and had two pretty impressive performances.

"At Rutgers, I was 6-feet and 201 pounds and I ran a 4.39 on track," Tolbert said. "It was in the top three for the best 40-times there. Then at Syracuse, their defensive backs coach told me I have the speed and foot work to play cornerback for them. I was surprised considering my size is more like a safety."

The talented defensive back almost attended the University of Miami camp last month. "When Miami came by the school in the spring, I was real excited. They invited me to their camp and I wanted to go, but I had to attend a family reunion the same weekend. Then they invited me to a prospect day about two weeks ago, but I couldn't get a way down there."

Tolbert, who is a full academic qualifier inside the classroom (2.6 core, 890 SAT score), played linebacker his freshman year in high school.

"I started high school as a linebacker," he said. "I was about 5-11 and 170 pounds then and I'm actually faster now that I'm 30 pounds bigger. Then as a sophomore, I was moved to free safety."

Speaking of his speed, Tolbert is one of the fastest kids in the entire state. Also a track standout, Tolbert competes in the 100m and 200m events. "At the state meet in early June, I finished fourth in the 100 by running a 10.68. That was electronically timed."

Tolbert said he already has some written scholarship offers. "Michigan State, Syracuse, and Rutgers have sent one in the mail," he said. "Others have talked about it on the phone, and Notre Dame told me just recently when I took a visit there that they'll offer me if I get a 950 SAT score."

Tolbert said the Hurricanes have also been keeping in close contact this summer. "I have been getting hand-written letters from Coach Larry Coker," he said. "He said they can't call me until September so I look forward to talking to them then. I'd love to play at Miami. Just look at how productive they are. They just won a national championship and put nine first round draft picks into the pro's the last two years. Just last year alone, they have something like three or four DB's that went in the first round. That's crazy. They said they're recruiting me as an athlete. They want to see me in person and also see me play a few times this season before offering."

Tolbert talked about some of his favorites. "Michigan State and Florida State are my top two right now," he said. "JoLonn Dunbar is a good friend of mine and we're both considering going to Michigan State. I like their defensive style. They play a pro style defense and I eventually want to play in the NFL so I think that will prepare me pretty well. I'm going to try to set up an official visit with Florida State real soon. After those two, it's Miami, Syracuse, Notre Dame, and Michigan."

The standout defensive back said he has one primary goal this coming season. "I want to play well enough to help my team win that I can be the Sectional MVP. If I do that, that means I'm helping my team out a lot."

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