Robinson (Concord, N.C.) offensive tackle R.J. Mattes has narrowed his list of schools to five and is in the process of setting up official visits with each program. The University of Virginia made the cut for the 6-7, 275-pound Mattes, who has already set up his official visit to Charlottesville.
"I am going on September 29th to Virginia," Mattes said. "I still have to set up the other four. I'm not exactly sure when they will be."
Three ACC programs and one SEC program make up the rest of Mattes' top five.
"I have a top 5 - Virginia, Clemson, South Carolina, N.C. State and North Carolina," Mattes said. "That is in no particular order. I'll probably take all five of my official visits before I make my decision. I went to camp to check out how the coaches coach. The official visits will help me get to know the players, where I fit in best and check out the academics. I'm going to base a lot of my decision off of these."
Mattes did not divulge a potential favorite from among the five.
"I can't make a bad decision," Mattes said. "All of these schools have great academics and great football tradition. It is a hard decision to make. I am just going to wait and see what happens on my official visits."
Location was a factor in selecting his top five schools. He turned down offers from close to 20 other Division 1A programs, including one from Miami.
"Basically, it came down to location," Mattes said. "All of these schools are relatively close to home. If I needed to go home for a day in case of an emergency or something, I could do it pretty easily."
Rated a 4-star prospect by Rivals.com and Scout.com, Mattes has anxiously turned his attention to the beginning of his senior season. Practice began on Monday and the team will be in full pads today or tomorrow. Robinson is preparing for its season opener against Northwest Cabarrus on August 17th.
Mattes is looking to lead his squad to a state title.
"I am a lot more confident," Mattes said. "Not just because of my camp performances, but just from being a senior leader. I am there to make sure everyone is serious about what we are doing, to make sure no one is cutting up. Just being a leader has helped me."
At this time, Mattes has no plans to make any other unofficial visits before his first official visit. He did not rule out making visits to preseason practices or games, but nothing has been set.