The old adage, “if you’re talented, the coaches will find you” certainly applies to Reston (VA) South Lakes High wideout A.J. Price. Despite playing on a sub 500 club, the rangy pass-catcher has been one of the hotter names on the east coast in recent weeks.
“As a team we’re struggling,” Price said. “We’re 3-7, but they expanded the playoff pool, so we play (Friday). We’re pretty focused so hopefully we can get a win. Individually, things have gone pretty well I think. I don’t know my exact stats. You’d have to call my coach on that. I don’t really pay attention to all of that. I play receiver corner and punter. I’m 6-4, 175, and I run a 4.5. All my friends tell me I’m Randy Moss.”
The obvious question is how does a kid with that kind of athleticism go virtually unnoticed until now? According to Price it was simply of matter of not having the opportunity to showcase his skills very much.
“Last year we ran option,” Price explained. “Our running back was the fastest kid I’ve ever seen. I only had 12 catches for 200 and some odd yards, and a touchdown.”
This season Price has seen the ball come his way more and his coach has been extremely proactive in getting the word out about his young pupil’s impressive skill set.
“My coach sent out film to schools, and I guess they really liked it,” said Price. “They decided to call. Monday was the first time I talked to Michigan. Wednesday was the first time I talked to Penn State. I had gotten something in the mail from Penn State inviting me to the Ohio State game, but I didn’t think it was anything serious at the time.”
Both the Nittany Lions and Wolverines apparently are serious because each program extended an offer. Price, however, decided not to jump at the first big opportunities that came his way.
“I’m going to take all five visits,” he said. “My timeline for making a decision, I’d say, is Mid-January. I’m going to visit Virginia, I go to North Carolina for an unofficial in two weeks, and I go to Winston Salem this week for an unofficial. I’m taking officials to Penn State and Michigan. Michigan wanted me to visit the first week in December, but my mom is going on a cruise with her girlfriend so that’s not going to work. I think my dad might take me. It’ll be the first or third week in December. I don’t know what other schools I’ll visit yet. I’m open.”
As Price begins to evaluate his suitors one factor that won’t likely hold much weight is distance from home. While interested in the in-state programs, their close proximity does not give them the leg up at this point.
“I’ve been talking to Virginia but I haven’t talked to Virginia Tech,” said Price. “I haven’t really decided what too far away is, but I know my mom will see me and I know I’ll be able to see her. That’s all that matters. I’m really looking for the school with the best education. That, for me, probably would be the biggest factor. I might major in history but I’m undecided on what part of history. I might major in religion. Other than that I’ll look at the campus and the students. I want to go somewhere where I’m not secluded because I’m on the football team. I want to go somewhere where the football team is intertwined with the student body… not separate.”
“I don’t have a favorite,” added Price, “but Michigan
definitely is my top…and UVA… and Penn State. The three of them
are definitely on top. I don’t have a favorite of the three, so it’s