"Me and my whole family went up there," said Manning, had never been to Virginia Tech before. "Once we got there, we met up with Coach Foster. He was helping with the camp, so he told me I could join in if I wanted to but I didn't have to. Since I didn't have the necessary equipment with me, I chose to observe.
"I was just watching the camp, but I did talk to a few players. I met up with Xavier Adibi. He told me a lot of stuff. I asked a few questions. It was a great conversation and it wasn't just about football. He told me to do what is best for me and nobody else. If I do decide to come to Virginia Tech, I would be playing in the place he plays. He told me not to take anything for granted. Nothing will be given to me, so I have to go out and do my thing and earn it.
"After camp, right before we went on a tour of the football facilities, I talked to Coach O'Cain. Then we went on the tour and saw the weight room and the whole football facility. I didn't get to see the academic support system because it closes at a certain time and it was locked when I went."
Manning says the overall Virginia Tech experience was "great" and called the football facilities "top notch."
At some point after the camp was over, Manning and his family had the opportunity to speak with head coach Frank Beamer. Coach Beamer impressed as well.
"Coach Beamer told me he wanted me to be a part of the program," Manning recalled. "He thinks that me going there would be a good move. He told me that once I commit, he would be able to tell me that I would be guaranteed a scholarship no matter what happened. My mother asked the question about the scholarship if I were to get hurt. That was one of her biggest questions. Once he answered it the way he did, he was A-OK with her."
Manning racked up 135 tackles last season as a junior. His speed, athleticism and playmaking ability make him a top recruit that has received many top 1A scholarship offers, including Alabama, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, North Carolina, N.C. State, South Carolina and Virginia Tech.
Right now, five schools stand out on top.
"I made a top five, but it is a wide open top five. There could be a lot of changes after my summer visits," Manning said. "There is Virginia Tech, N.C. State, North Carolina, Clemson and Florida. I have got a few that deserve to be higher than the others, but I don't want to say."
Manning is looking to make a commitment before his senior season begins. His summer will be a busy one filled with visits, as he plans to go to Alabama, Georgia, Florida and Florida State. This week, he will head to Clemson for camp. He will head to N.C. State later this month. Return trips to North Carolina and Virginia Tech are likely later this summer.