Pack Still in the Mix for Cooper?

Pack Pride talks with Hyattsville (MD) defensive tackle Darian Cooper and has the latest on his recruitment.

Four-star Hyattsville (Md.) DeMatha defensive tackle Darian Cooper is narrowing his list soon. Will NC State make the cut?

The Pack is continuing to look for help at defensive tackle and Cooper is one of the nation's top prospects at the position. The 6-1, 290-pound prospect has good explosiveness for his size and a motor that does not stop.

There are a long list of schools that have offered Cooper and made him a high priority, but soon he is planning to do the hard work of trimming that list to make things more manageable. He probably won't be making a final decision anytime soon but the decision he's about to make is difficult enough.

"I'm starting to get an idea of which schools I like," Cooper told Pack Pride. "I've sat down with a few people and discussed what kind of schools best suit me. We've talked about where I'll really find the most success, so we've kind of started that process.

"There are a few schools that stick out to me. I understand it's a business decision. It's not just a decision for football but for life in general."

Cooper declined to mention which schools are currently at the front of his mind but that could be coming soon.

"I plan on narrowing it down by the end of the summer, hopefully by the end of two-a-days," he continued. "I'm hoping to have it down to a top five by then."

NC State's coaches have invested a lot of energy into recruiting Cooper, so they will be anxiously awaiting any news that might emerge in his recruitment. It's tough to fault them for anything they've done so far. Cooper has a good relationship with the coaching staff and isn't saying anything negative about the school.

"I've been in contact with coach [Keith] Willis a lot," Cooper explained. "I'm definitely still in contact with NC State at this point in time. NC State is a school that has really stuck there with me. I haven't visited but I have family all over North Carolina so I'm very familiar with them. I'm still trying to get down there."

Cooper is ranked the No. 23 defensive tackle in the nation and a four-star prospect by

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