Lawrence: "It's Like A Family There"

FOUR OAKS, N.C. -- Dexter Lawrence was the headliner at last weekend’s Shrine Bowl Combine, and he certainly didn't disappoint.

Checking in at 6-foot-5 and 330 pounds, Wake Forest (NC) defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence posted a 4.79-second 40-yard dash, 4.68 shuttle, 7-foot, 8-inch broad jump and 38 repetitions of 185 pounds on the bench press.

Lawrence, who is rated the No. 2 player in North Carolina and the No. 7 defensive tackle by, is arguably underrated. However, several colleges are all over him, including NC State.

With the Wolfpack's campus being just minutes from Lawrence's house, he has been able to take multiple unofficial visits, including trips for basketball games against Notre Dame and, most recently, Syracuse.

"I like the atmosphere, the coaches and how the program is on the rise,” Lawrence said of the Syracuse visit. “I also like how the coaches treat the players and how it’s like a family there.”

NC State has made Lawrence a major priority. In fact, he is likely the top recruit on their board as several coaches are contributing to his recruitment.

"I talked to coach (Dave) Doeren, (defensive line) coach Ryan (Nielsen) and (offensive coordinator) coach (Matt) Canada,” Lawrence said.

“I have the closest relationship with coach Nielsen. At the game, we sat and talked about their scheme on defense and how I would play the three-technique. We also talked about things outside of football, which I really enjoyed. Coach Doeren also told me that they really need me.”

Local programs like NC State and North Carolina are under consideration, and Lawrence plans on taking other visits in the near future.

"I plan on taking some visits this summer, but no dates have been set yet,” he said. “I’ll probably go to Clemson, Arkansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama and Ole Miss.”

Does he have a leader?

"No schools are standing out right now,” Lawrence said. “I’m still wide open. I might cut my list of schools to ten during the middle of my season and then I’ll take five official visits. As far as a decision, I might wait until signing day.

"It’s going to be a tough decision. I’m looking for a program that’s family-oriented and for a coaching staff that pushes me.”

As a junior, Lawrence led Wake Forest to the NCHSAA 4AA Title game, totaling 55 tackles, 25.0 tackles for a loss, and 10.0 sacks. He also intercepted and forced three fumbles.

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