Over 50 offers is insane. It really is. You can't keep track of that many, much less contact every single coach, because they aren't allowed to contact you outside of e-mail, regular mail or perhaps on facebook.
The enormity of the attention prompted what has become a bit of a story in and of itself, the almost infamous questionnaire. It was a document sent out by the Lyons family where they asked questions of these schools which were recruiting Florida prep defensive back Wayne Lyons.
1. What are the typical weather conditions during the football season?
2. What type of summer program/schedule do you have for the football players?
3. Are players required to attend summer school?
4. If my mom had to fly to see me play, what is the best airport to fly into from Fort Lauderdale, Fla.?
Those are just four of the questions posed in this document. It covers everything from the obvious to the obscure. It's something that was greeted with a bit of humor when it first came out. But for a young man who is bound and determined to be his grade's Valedictorian this year, there wasn't anything funny about the goal behind this healthy inquiry.
"Some schools didn't seem to like it, but most answered the questions we had. And it's great, because I can just read it and get things figured out from there," Lyons said. "It was a big tool that I used in taking my initial list and narrowing it down to the 14 schools."
The part that impressed me about this list wasn't the schools on it, but the fact that he could tell you what was going on with each one. I, of course, asked about Nebraska and what kept them in the mix after the first round of cuts. He didn't hesitate when he gave the answer, something you could understand as someone might need a bit to think about that school, separate it in their own mind and even then you might get something a bit vague.
"All the coaches recruiting me from there are great. They seem like really cool guys," said Lyons whose primary recruiter from Nebraska is Secondary Coach Marvin Sanders. "But I know that Nebraska had the number one scoring defense in the country, they had one of the top five overall defenses and most of the cornerbacks they have now will be gone soon."
I dare you to assume he couldn't be just as accurate with any of the other 14 schools on his list.
Narrowing the list the first time was hard. That made up over two-thirds of his total number of written offers. But he knows the next cut could be even tougher. "It's always difficult. There are a lot of great places out there, and it's not easy marking one off the list," he said. "But it's something I hope I will have not long after my final season starts."
His official visits are still as wide open as the list of favorites he has, Lyons saying that they have yet to sit down and really think all that through. One big cut is enough for awhile, you might say. But he's excited, because while many teams around the country are still waiting to get into the football preparation, his team has been in going at it for over a week. "It's hot, but we have a lot of good players, and I know everyone is excited to get it going," he said. "I know I am. You get used to the humidity down here, but it's still hot and still a lot of work. But that's good, because doing well isn't easy."