Eleanor Roosevelt (Greenbelt, MD) safety Okechuckwu Okoroha, one of Virginia's top remaining targets in the 2008 recruiting class, gave Virginia the first shot to impress him in an official visit capacity. This past weekend's official visit was Okoroha's first trip to Virginia since the Elite Junior Day in June. Just like he did on the previous experience, the 6-0, 192-pound star came away impressed.
"Definitely. I had a great time," Okoroha said.
Hosted by freshman safety Corey Mosley and senior safety Nate Lyles, the senior standout came away impressed by the closeness of Virginia's team.
"The family atmosphere there stood out," Okoroha said. "Everybody was just loving each other. I had a great time and everything, but the thing that stood out to me the most was how all of the players spent so much time together and how they acted towards each other even after the loss. They still showed a lot of love towards each other."
Despite the loss to Virginia Tech, Virginia's game atmosphere impressed the hard-hitting defensive back.
"The crowd was wild," Okoroha said. "I loved the crowd down there. Most of the people were yelling at me, saying I should come there. The crowd definitely did research (laughs). They keep up on you."
The game also served as an opportunity to see UVa's 3-4 defense up close. Okoroha, who spoke at length with Defensive Backs Coach Steve Bernstein over the weekend, paid close attention to the safeties.
"I liked the way they use the safeties," Okoroha said. "They bring them from different areas and also let them play back in coverage. They will move them close to the box, sometimes like a linebacker, in run support. They use them many different ways."
Before leaving on Sunday, Okoroha had one final meeting with Head Coach Al Groh. He added that there was "no pressure at all" from the UVa coaches to commit.
"Coach Groh is a great guy and a great person," Okoroha said. "You can tell he has a lot of love for his players. He was telling me how I fit into the program that he wants to run. He likes the kind of football player I am. He was just letting me know how he felt about me."
Virginia made a positive impression back in June and followed suit again this weekend.
"I'm loving Virginia. They are good. Right now, the players look good. Everything is mostly positive," Okoroha said. "I liked it a lot. Right now, I'm just trying to weigh all of my options."
At this point, there are five other "options" still in play. Last week, Okoroha narrowed his list to six schools - Boston College, Clemson, Illinois, Maryland, N.C. State and Virginia. He has two other official visits scheduled.
"Virginia stands out because I've been there for a visit, but I'm taking a visit down to Illinois on December 8th and I have a visit scheduled to Boston College for the 15th," Okoroha said. "Virginia stands out right now because I've actually been there."
Okoroha says he is "planning" on making all five official visits before he commits, but he did not rule out the possibility of committing after just three trips.