Whitner Still Has State on His Top-5 List

"I haven't talked to Coach Dantonio since the end of the football season, but we do stay in touch through email. He emails me and I email him back," said Whitner.

EAST LANSING - Michigan State likes Dawawn Whitner and Whitner likes Michigan State right back. So why hasn't Whitner visited MSU or any school in the Midwest so far?

"I have to get my ACT scores in order," said the Cleveland Glenville star. "I can't visit any school on an official visit until I get my ACT score."

Whitner said he hoped to have his qualifying score by next week and that he still has his wish list of schools.

"Michigan State is a very good school with a very good football program, just like Illinois does, but I grew up in Ohio and I've got love for my hometown," said Whitner in explaining why he still has Ohio State atop his list.

He realizes though, due the nature of his situation and the lateness of trying to qualify that Ohio State may not have a scholarship for him.

"I think Ohio State has only one or maybe none left," he said. "If they don't have a scholarship for me, then I'll have to look at the other schools on my list. But I'm going to stick with my top five. I'm not putting any more schools in or taking any more out."

Whitner said that he likes Ohio State, Illinois, Michigan State, West Virginia and Minnesota.

"At any time, a school could move up, it's all about interest, how much I like the school. All the ones in my top five rotate. Like the past week, Illinois was number one and the week before Minnesota was number one."

What about Michigan State? Do the Spartans have a legitimate chance of landing the two-star defensive tackle candidate?

"I haven't talked to Coach Dantonio since the end of the football season, but we do stay in touch through email. He emails me and I email him back," said Whitner.

Whitner talked about the coaches who've talked to him. "I talked to the Recruiting Co-ordinator (Mark Staten), Coach Enos and Coach Dantonio. The recruiting coordinator told me he's got love for me and they know what I can do and that I will fit in."

The 6-foot-2, 265-pound big man was named to Scout.com's U.S. Army All-Combine's second team. Whitner is the younger brother of former Ohio State standout Dante Whitner who plays for the NFL's Buffalo Bills. He was also named second team All-Ohio by the Associated Press.

While he's hoping for the best with his ACT scores, he has a contingency plan if he doesn't make the grade.

"I've been waiting and hoping that my scores come back this month, but then I have to think about, what if my scores don't come (back right).

So what the plan if he doesn't make the grade, will he go the junior college route?

"Yeah. A couple of schools are going to hold a scholarship for me for 18 months, a junior college in Kansas, (Butler) the #1 junior college in the nation and one from California."

So what are the chances that he could land in East Lansing if he does make the grade?

"Right now I'm going to say Ohio State is first, then Illinois, Michigan State is third and then West Virginia and Minnesota."

Whitner has not ruled out walking on to the Buckeyes since he loves them so much. It appears that his chances of becoming a Spartan rest on him making his ACT score to qualify and then Ohio State being out of scholarships combined with a good sell job by the Spartans staff.

It sounds like a longshot to GSN, but at least there is still a chance that this talented player from an outstanding high school program could open up the pipeline from the talent rich Cleveland Glenville program to East Lansing.

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