"I just committed to NC State a few minutes ago," said Winkles, "NC State was one of the top schools on my list and once they offered it was an easy decision for me. I liked the academics and I really like the coaching staff. They offered me at fullback. I haven't played fullback before but I'm a quick learner and I'm looking forward to doing it."
Winkles had a stellar junior season at Upson-Lee and is one of the top overall athletes in the state of Georgia. He posted a 34-4 record in wrestling despite missing half the season with an injury. He was named First Team All-Region in wrestling and was crowned Area Champion, AAAA West Sectionals Champion, AAAA State Runner-up, National Runner-up, and National All-American.
On the gridiron he started at linebacker and tight end. Despite playing in just eight games after missing the final three games of the season with a knee injury, he was the team's leading tackler and led the team in receiving yards at the time of the injury. He totaled 83 tackles, six forced fumbles, five sacks, and an interception in 2008.
He was tabbed All-Middle Georgia Honorable Mention, GACA First Team All-State, and was a First Team All-Region selection on both sides of the ball.
He camped at Georgia before attending NC State's camp this weekend where he worked out at linebacker and fullback. The Wolfpack offered Winkles as a fullback. It was his first scholarship offer.
"I really loved the position drills at NC State," said Winkles. "I did good in all of them, and I could tell they liked me a lot. I really liked coach McCollum. He was outstanding. The man was kind of like a daddy to me while I was there... I had a great time with him and already knew him because he recruits my area.
"Georgia was also recruiting me at fullback. NC State told me before I left that if they ended up taking a fullback I was their top choice. I don't have a problem with playing fullback at all. Lining up and hitting the crap out of someone five yards away sounds good to me."
Checking in at 6-foot-1 and 245 pounds, Winkles has been timed as low as 4.7 in the 40-yard dash. He was the area weightlifting champion, and benches 330 pounds with a 31-inch vertical and 500-pound squat.
Off the field Winkles carries a 3.5 GPA and projects as a full qualifier. Pack Pride will have more on his decision in the near future so stay tuned!