Stone Bridge (Ashburn, Va) defensive tackle Brian Slay (6-2, 280 pounds) kicked off the recruiting year by becoming the first player to commit to NC State for the class of 2009. In the Pack’s corner for better than ten months, Slay never wavered and went on to have a tremendous senior season- tallying 72 tackles, six sacks, two interceptions and two blocked punts. He even chipped in 46 yards and two rushing touchdowns on offense as Stone Bridge made it to the state semi-finals.
A frequent visitor to NC State, Slay made his official visit to Raleigh this past weekend and he gave Pack Pride the scoop on his trip in this Q&A.
Brian, talk about how your senior season went.
The season kind of ended horribly. Everyone thought we were going to cakewalk and go ahead and win but we ended up stumbling in the state semi-finals against one of the best teams in the state. We winded up finishing number two in the country but turnovers were the key to that game. We had seven turnovers and the other team only had one.
How about you personally? How did you feel like you performed?
I played well overall. There was a stretch during the year where I could have played better. It was just that we were out so fast because we whipped up on teams so fast that it was hard to get into the rhythm of the game. That might have played a factor later on in the season. But overall, I had a good season. I think I got on two all-state teams.
So with football season over, what are you up to now?
I’m out there playing basketball right now and that’s just a way to stay conditioned. So, I’m using that as conditioning and then once basketball is over I’ll start lifting and start working out.
You’ve visited a bunch of times but how did the official visit go this past weekend?
The visit went really well. I enjoyed it. The two days I was there, Mike Glennon was my host and he showed me a good time. He showed me the College Inn and all that and I hung out with the players.
That was pretty much the main reason I went down there was to hang out with the players. I wanted to get that first feel of them and they’re a good group. They all seem like one family and I’d like to be a part of that.
As a new player headed to NC State, what were your thoughts on the Pack’s turnaround late in the season?
I was enjoying watching it because they were struggling early on in the year. I got a little trash talked to me at school but once they started picking it up, I enjoyed watching and seeing what they could have been earlier in the year but injuries caused it. The biggest one for me was the Wake Forest game. I’ve got three teammates going there and I heard a lot of talk that week. I just kept quiet and said wait and see what happens.
You were actually the first guy to commit to State. Did the coaches ever bring that up?
No, the coaches didn’t bring it up but when I was down there on my visit I was with a lot of other commits and I let them all know that they had followed me.
Have you thought about what you plan to major in once you get to State?
I was planning on doing first year college and the other day I was looking and sports management crossed my mind so it’ll either be that or criminology.
Unlike a lot of players who ride the recruiting process out, you decided to commit early and you stuck with it throughout the year. What led you to make your commitment to State so early?
When they first offered me I did my research and looked up and saw they had a down year the year before. I looked at the players and I knew they had good talent so I knew the rise was coming. Plus, they have a great coaching staff which I figured out when I went on that first visit. I really enjoyed the coaching staff. They’re straightforward guys and they’re not going to tell you a lie. They’re going to tell you how it is. I just loved it. On my first visit there I went to the Duke basketball game, which was a good game but State ended up losing and I just liked that atmosphere. I was thinking that if this was the atmosphere for a basketball game during spring break then just imagine what the football games are going to be like.
When I got home, Mike Glennon is from my area, and he was texting me just saying that he could guarantee that we were going to be on the rise. He was the one that pretty much talked me into it but I really enjoyed that first visit. They say the first impression is the best impression and that’s how I felt. I didn’t want to be anywhere else."Coach Quote: "I think he's a game-changer on the defensive line. He runs stuff down from the backside, forces fumbles, applies pressure... he's just a big, quick athlete.
"I'm sort of biased because I see him everyday, but I think he has great athleticism for a guy that size and he could be an edge-type player... he can play on the end, but with his physical attributes and ability, he could turn into whatever you're looking for. He will be able to play whatever the coaches want him to play." - Stone Bridge Head Coach Mickey Thompson
Scouting Report: "Lining up at defensive end for Stone Bridge High School, Brian Slay is a high-intensity player who excels at making plays in the opposing team's backfield. He is quick at the point of attack and his size and strength allow him to manhandle offensive linemen on the high school level. He does a great job of shedding blocks and routinely beats the linemen across from him.
"Slay is explosive out of his stance and gets from point A to point B in a hurry. He moves well and is agile given his size but will likely be destined for defensive tackle in college where he could shine. Slay also plays with quite a bit of fire and emotion. As he matures and develops, Slay has the potential to develop into a solid defensive lineman for NC State down the road." - Pack Pride Recruiting Analyst Steve Williams
NOTE: Make sure you have the latest version of Adobe Flash Player. Click here for the Free Download of Flash.