"The kid can throw it 60 yards on a rope – he can sling it, he's got a great arm. But this offense also gives him the opportunity to do a lot of our running. He's a tough kid. He'll run over you if he gets a chance, but most of the time he'll run by you."
Junior Season Highlights:|
Last season's transition to a spread scheme was bumpy, but the offense consistently flashed its potential. Crest ended the season at 8-5, while Wilkins rushed for 994 yards and 15 touchdowns on 163 rushes. He also completed 60-of-139 passes for 914 yards and five touchdowns, with two interceptions.
"I thought it went real well," Kirby said. "There are some things we're going to fine tune this year. The coaching staff is going back to Appalachian [State]. We'll try to simplify it a little bit."
The offensive switch wasn't difficult for Wilkins. As a freshman he started in a similar offense while playing for Forest City (N.C.) Chase High.
Wilkins has thus far received one scholarship offer – NC State. He is also hearing from Clemson, Duke, Florida, LSU, Michigan State, UNC, Notre Dame, Penn State, Tennessee, and South Carolina.
"He's starting to get them from all over the country," Kirby said. "I think he's going to be recruited nationally once people see more of him."
UNC was among the schools recruiting Wilkins the hardest. However, after John Lovett, the area recruiter, accepted the defensive coordinator job at Miami, communication has since declined.
"The last thing that we did was [Lovett] came by and said ‘Send me a transcript,'" Kirby said. "We faxed that down there last week. With him leaving, we haven't heard anything since then. I imagine, within the next two-three weeks, they'll have somebody back in there and back over here."
Wilkins says UNC, along with Clemson and NC State, make up his favorites list.
"I like the football at those schools," Wilkins said. "And they are close. I can't go too far away from home – I'm not used to it, I'm not used to being away."
Wilkins, who isn't exactly sure when he'll make a verbal commitment, says all three schools are equal.
Wilkins has made several visits to all three schools. Last fall, he attended three games at UNC, and two at both Clemson and NC State. He has attended a junior day at NC State, and plans to attend Clemson's and UNC's upcoming junior days.
"It was really just to look and see what I like, how the facilities were, how the coaching staff is," Wilkins said of the purpose of his travel itinerary.
Last summer, Wilkins camped at Notre Dame – his lone stop. This summer, though, he plans to camp at Clemson, UNC, and NC State. All three camps, he figures, will give him a chance to get better acquainted with each respective school's coaching staff, as well as its facilities.
An athlete in every sense of the word, where Wilkins plays on the collegiate level is somewhat a mystery.
"In talking with State, they asked him ‘What do you want to do?' and he said ‘I want to touch the ball,'" Kirby said. "I think they're thinking as a slot receiver, or a guy that may run some option."
According to Wilkins, UNC has also given Wilkins the ability to decide where he'll play. Most other schools, such as Notre Dame, are recruiting him as a defensive back.
"I'd rather stay on offense, but I'm willing to do whatever," Wilkins said. "I don't have to play quarterback, I just want to be on offense."
Kirby envisions Wilkins excelling as a Percy Harvin-type player.
"Wide receiver, slot, pitch man on the option – that type of thing," Kirby said. "I think he'd be unbelievable at that type of position. With his arm, a team has the opportunity to pitch it to him and then let him throw it down the field. There are a lot of things you can do with Reggie Wilkins."