Attention almost at panic-mode for Perez

Is it too early to panic if you are a recruit? Of course not. It's early, schools have lots of chances to see you and there's an entire season to go. Ok, but what if you are sitting on forty-plus written offers and you want that list at five before your season begins? Ok, go ahead, panic. Antwine Perez isn't panicking, but he's already thinking about recruiting, because he's looking to avoid what he knows will be a maelstrom of attention when his final season officially begins.

Camden, New Jersey's, Antwine Perez isn't messing around. Yes, not as a football player, Perez one of Woodrow Wilson's returning stars, playing the quarterback and safety position.

There's little doubting statistics such as; 1700 yards throwing along with 700 yards rushing, scoring a total of 14 times. Add that to the 76 tackles, seven interceptions and four forced fumbles on defense, it would seem that Perez is as much of focal point for his own team as he has become with colleges around the country.

That's the problem, at least right now, Perez reporting that he's jumped over the 40 offer mark with the recent addition of offers from South Carolina, Louisville and LSU.

Most kids, heck probably around 90% of the kids in the country know that to receive that kind of attention is little more than a pipe dream, but for Antwine, it's actually become an issue, of which he wasn't entirely ready. "It's been crazy, I know that," Perez said of the flurry of attention from colleges. "I didn't know what to expect, but it wasn't all this."

There was a point though, dating back to his first offer from Rutgers, that this was fun, manageable and didn't seem like that big of a deal. As one turned into ten, then twenty, jumping rapidly to over 40, it didn't take Antwine long to realize that he better start chiseling this block of offers down before it's a mountain he can't even climb.

"I had favorites early on, just teams that I liked or had been looking at before," Perez said. "But, another school offers, than another and more and it makes it hard to try and knock this thing down."

"I know I want it to about eight before my season starts, because I can't deal with forty-some colleges calling me. I don't want that."

In the hurried effort to manage his list before it becomes unmanageable, Antwine said that he's keeping his previous list, but adding a few more. And, with that list, Perez admitted that while he's trying hard to squeeze it down, there's still some options out there that once he knows more about a certain team, they could find themselves on the list.

"I kind of do have a top eight," he said. "I'm not really sure, but I think USC will be in there, Tennessee, Ohio State, Michigan, Oklahoma and Georgia. I like those schools. Some of them might not make it, but I know some of them definitely will."

Antwine finds himself in a comfort zone of sorts, despite the pressures to take an immense list and turn it into a fashionable list of five. It's the mind-set that he doesn't have to worry about impressing the schools he's possibly grown up watching or watched win titles in recent years. He's done that, but as Antwine said, he thinks that the sheer volume of the offers has as much to do with his attitude off the field as on.

"I'm a student on and off the field," Perez said. "I can't learn enough or know enough when I step on the field. That's my personality and I think colleges like that, because they know I will get in the film room or class on my own and that's just something they don't have to worry about."

That off the field success in the class room has put Perez into the position where he's on pace to graduate in December. That was his intent, though, so he could find his way onto a college campus right when the first of the year approached.

Asked about how he felt about missing out on some of the extracurricular activities in high school, such as the annual prom, Antwine said that the advantage of leaving far outweigh those that have him sticking around. "If you get into classes early, you get into the film room early and you learn everything that much faster," he said. "I want that head start. I want to be as far ahead as I can be when the next season arrives."

The intent is obvious and Perez seems to have things pretty well figured out at this point. He even doses his organizational skills with a little admission that while things seem to be in order right now, he can't tell you where he'll be in one month, much less the beginning of his last year at the prep-level.

"Everything changes so much, sometimes I don't know what's going on," he said. "But, I'll have it all figured out soon. I have to, because I don't want that kind of craziness when the season gets here."

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