Sam Webb: Word is you're going to taking a visit to Michigan pretty soon?
Eric Olson (6-6, 270, Cambridge MA, Buckingham Browne Nichols): "That's correct, I'm coming out this Tuesday."
Sam Webb: Tell me about your Michigan recruitment. How long has Michigan been on you and when did they offer you a scholarship?
Eric Olson: "Around two months ago, Coach Mallory got in contact with me. It was out of the blue to be honest. He is the recruiting coordinator from this area and he is sending me a message that the offensive line coach came across your highlights and he really, really likes you. We want to recruit you and we're really interested in you. I got in touch with them back and said hey coach, the interest is really mutual. Michigan is definitely a school that I would be interested in. And it kind of just progressed from there. Coach Mallory came by my school and met with my coach. They watched some more film, and that night after he came to my school I had a scholarship."
Sam Webb: What about a timeline for making a decision then? Is it safe to say that you are making a decision this summer or soon?
Eric Olson: "Definitely as soon as possible. As soon as possible but don't rush, be quick but don't hurry I guess. The sooner the better, but at the same time, it is such a big decision that you don't want to rush it. I want to make it as soon as possible. Michigan is my last planned visit right now, so after that I am going to talk stuff over with my family and really consider everything in deciding the school and hopefully I can feel set on a school and make up mind in the near future."
Sam Webb: Are you taking that visit to Michigan yourself or is your family coming along with you for the trip?
Eric Olson: "My dad is coming."
Sam Webb: Is it at all possible that you are so blown away on the trip that you'll make a decision while you're in Ann Arbor, or are you definitely going to wait and go home and talk it over before you make a choice?
Eric Olson: "I'm not going to rule anything out, but I'm not planning on committing on the trip I guess you could say. If it is awesome, it is awesome and we'll go from there, but I'm kind of just playing it by ear and everything is to be considered while I'm on the trip."
Sam Webb: What offers do you have and what schools standout as the top schools on your list right now?
Eric Olson: "I have Boston College, University of Massachusetts, UCONN, Wake Forest, Duke, Virginia, Northwestern, Tulane and Michigan. The schools I have taken unofficials to — I have taken several unofficial visits to Duke, Boston College, Northwestern, Virginia, and Michigan is my next one. So I guess you could consider them my top five."
Sam Webb: It is very obvious listening to that list that academics are a huge, huge factor in your decision-making process.
Eric Olson: "I have told a ton of schools that have come into contact me, don't waste your time. They are good football schools but not necessary the best schools. And with the offers I have, for me who wants academics, I don't see why I would waste a school's time if I knew I wasn't going to go there. I could have a little more sterling of an offer list, I truly believe, if I entertained those schools a little more."
Sam Webb: Because you have a list of finalists on which all of them have comparable academic prestige, what are going to be the other factors in your decision that sort of will separate one school from all the rest?
Eric Olson: "The people. The people associated with the program are such an important part. You have got to feel comfortable with the players, you've got to feel comfortable with the coaches — they are people who you are going to be spending the next four or five years, you are going to be spending so much time with them and you need to feel comfortable and you need to enjoy spending time with those people. So for me that is kind of the biggest part. One place could have a cool locker room or an extra weight room, but that is not that big of a deal."
Sam Webb: Is distance from home going to play a role at all?
Eric Olson: "No, not at all. There are some nice things about staying close to home but there are also some nice things about going out and going somewhere else other than right in my backyard."
Sam Webb: What about style of offense? Are you looking for a traditional pro style offense or are you looking for a spread? Is that going to be a factor at all?
Eric Olson: "Not necessarily. I have pretty good feet for a lineman, so I think I would actually do pretty well in a spread, but traditional or spread is not really going to play a factor in my decision."
Sam Webb: What about depth chart? Are you paying attention to how many lineman are already on campus and how many lineman might be in a recruiting class?
Eric Olson: "I do keep an eye on it. I don't hold too much stock into it. Every single place you go there is going to be competition no matter what, so I am not going to fret over something. It is something I do keep an eye on, but it is not something that is going to weigh completely into my decision."
Sam Webb: We talked a little bit of your recruitment and the things that you are looking for. What about your game. Tell me about Eric Olson on the football field.
Eric Olson: "100% effort on every single play. Finishing every single block, playing to the whistle on every single play. What I hear most from the coaches watching my highlight film is effort and finishing all the plays, and athleticism. I grew up as a basketball player my whole life and it has kind of translated to the football field. I have pretty good feet for a lineman. I am real lean for 270 pounds. Some people when they seem me, they say I go about 230, I carry my weight pretty well. So all these colleges think a couple of years in a college program, I can weigh 300 pounds and carry that weight pretty well. And I have long arms."
Michigan a Strong Contender for OL Olson
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