The staff at Pack Pride is always looking for new and improved ways to provide recruiting coverage. With the NFL recently completing their 2005 draft, we started wondering what an NC State draft might look like if such an event were possible. So, we started researching the recruiting needs for the class of 2006 and the top prospects that the Pack has targeted to meet those needs. We compiled all the information and came up with, who we believe to be, 20 of the most important recruits for 2005. We've ranked them in order based on talent and the Wolfpack's need at each position and will work backwards from No. 20 to No. 1. As always, the info provided in this report is solely the opinion of the staff at Pack Pride and is in no way connected with any actual recruiting board of the coaching staff at NC State. Today we highlight our pick for the Pack's 7th selection.
Pack Pride's pick as the No. 6 selection in the 2005 mock draft is....DB Darius Gaither.
6-1, 200-pounds, 4.4-seconds in the 40 yard dash
Winnsboro (SC) Fairfield Central High School
Darius Gaither is one of the top players in the state of South Carolina and an explosive talent. As a junior, Gaither racked up 87 tackles, 16 pass breakups, and seven interceptions. He also excelled on special teams where he returned four punts for touchdowns.
On the recruiting scene, Gaither projects as a cornerback on the next level because of his size and blazing speed. He's already garnered offers from NC State, UNC, South Carolina, Maryland, Tennessee, Auburn, and Wake Forest with interest coming from Georgia, Clemson, and Florida State among others.
NC State's done a terrific job recruiting the South Carolina star, with running backs coach Dick Portee spearheading his recruitment. Gaither visited the Wolfpack in the spring with his family and shortly thereafter he named NC State his favorite. He has since opened back up his recruitment, but it's safe to say the Wolfpack is definitely near the top of his list.
Gaither plans on taking his time with his recruitment and deciding close to signing day, but he wil camp at NC State this summer. Both in-state schools appear to be in the mix, along with Auburn and Georgia.
With NC State's need for defensive backs, Gaither is definitely a priority. The Wolfpack went into South Carolina in '05 and landed star athlete J.C. Neal. Maybe they can do it again in '06 by landing Darius Gaither.