The South has a lot of great wide receivers this year, but very few have the combination of height (6-2), speed (4.41 forty), hands and academics (straight A student) that David Lipscomb High School's Austin Rogers has.
Because of that combination, numerous colleges have shown serious interest. In fact, three of those colleges were so impressed with what they saw that they went ahead and sent him written scholarship offers before the summer was even half over.
"I received the first offer from Mississippi State kind of out of the blue because I hadn't really talked to their coaches that much," said Rogers, a youngster who recorded a phenomenal 36.9 yards per reception last season. "I talked to their coach the last week in May. I think his name was (Shane) Beamer. He said something about an offer, then it came in the mail the next week. It really kind of surprised me.
"Then, I went to the Vanderbilt camp and their coach, after the camp was over, came up to me and said they were going to offer me. It came in the mail a couple of days later. A couple of weeks later I went to the UT (Tennessee) camp and did pretty well that day. Coach Fulmer brought me up to his office afterwards and said that they were going to offer me. Then, like the Vanderbilt offer, it came in the mail a couple of days later."
You would think, being from Nashville, Tennessee, that Rogers has grown up a fan of Vanderbilt. Not so said this very articulate youngster.
"I have grown up a fan of Tennessee," said Rogers. "I have always been a fan of Tennessee."
With that statement, you wonder if the other colleges are wasting their time recruiting him.
"I am trying to keep everything open right now," said Rogers, who is being recruited mostly as a wide receiver but also as a safety by several colleges. "I like Tennessee, but no one is that far down or that far up."
When asked who his top schools are, Rogers quickly mentioned six schools, with two leading the other four.
What does he like about each college?
"Of course, I have grown up a fan of Tennessee. I also like their style of offense and they put out great players every year. One of my dreams is to go to the NFL."
"I have heard a lot of great things about Georgia. I've heard that they have great academics, a great coach who is a great Christian. I've also heard that they have a great campus."
"There have been several guys from the Nashville area that have gone to Virginia who have said that they like it. They also have great academics and a really nice campus."
"I don't know much about Mississippi State. I know they didn't have too good of a record last year, but normally they are pretty strong in the SEC each year."
"LSU won the national championship last year. Pretty good players come out of there every year. I like the area, their facilities and the campus. I know some people that live there. I have come to like LSU the last several years."
"Vanderbilt is close (to home) and has great academics. You can't get a much better education than you can there. They don't normally have too good of a record each year, but the coaches seem to feel they will do better."
Stay tuned for the latest updates on Rogers, as his recruitment continues to heat up.
Gene Swindoll is the publisher/owner of Gene's Page (http://mississippistate.theinsiders.com), the source for Mississippi State sports on TheInsiders sports network. You can contact him by email at email@example.com.