Wilson Starts Recruiting Process All Over Again

Although he would have preferred it if Tyrone Willingham was never let go by Notre Dame, Lawrence Wilson has opened up his recruitment once again and he is trying to make the most of it the second time around. Ohio State, Pittsburgh and Michigan are his three top selections now.

Just a little more than a week ago Lawrence Wilson was very content and he was looking forward to waking up the echoes and playing college football for Tyrone Willingham at Notre Dame. Then, in almost an instant, that world as he envisioned it to be came tumbling down when the Fighting Irish field boss was dismissed after his third season at the university.

"I was in school and my dad had called me and left the message and after my period was over I listened to the message," Wilson said. "When I first heard it I was real shocked, I couldn't believe what had happened. I called my dad back and we talked about it for a little bit."

Wilson's immediate reaction was to yank his verbal commitment that he made to Willingham and Notre Dame.

"When I got home from school that day a lot of schools started calling with Notre Dame out of the picture and a lot of reporters started calling," Wilson said. "Things got real busy again all of a sudden."

Speculation about Wilson's future has continued to be a hot topic on the various web sites over the Internet in the passing week.

"Things are starting to settle down now from the initial situation and I'm starting to think things out thoroughly," Wilson said. "I'm just trying to take it slow right now and make sure I make the best decision for me and my family"

His uneasy feelings about Notre Dame, however, remain the same since he heard the news of Willingham's ouster.

"It's still a great school but I didn't like how they handled the situation," Wilson said. "I can't say anything bad about Notre Dame, it's a great school, but the way they handled the situation was questionable in my mind. I didn't think they handled it in the right way."

Willingham was a "big part" of the reason Wilson committed to Notre Dame.

"Me and Coach Willingham sat down and we talked about it for a long time. We had long phone conversations about it," he said. "Basically him and his coaching staff were a big part of me making the decision to go to Notre Dame. So when I heard the news it kind of hurt me. I had already made up my mind emotionally and I was going to be coached by Coach Willingham and his coaching staff. I was already preparing for it in my mind. So when I heard the news I had to change my mind set again."

So what exactly is Wilson's mind set now with this all coming down in the midst of the basketball season?

"It's real hectic now because I don't want to hurt my teammates on my basketball team by carrying this on for a long time," he said. "I don't want to harm the team or the team chemistry with this so I'm just trying to handle this as smoothly as possibly. "I'm trying not to think about it while I'm playing basketball because I don't want to hurt my teammates because we're trying to win a state championship. All of my attention should be concentrating on the basketball season but it's kind of hard separating basketball and football right now."

And right now there is no plan set or any timetable either for Wilson to make another verbal commitment any time soon.

"We're still evaluating all of the schools and still talking to all of the coaches to see what all of the schools have to offer," he said. "I'm talking to my family about it and talking to my parents and evaluating all of the schools and seeing all that they have to offer me."

Ohio State, Pittsburgh and Michigan are the three schools that Wilson seems to be evaluating at this point. He made an unofficial visit to Ohio State this past weekend.

"I went to Ohio State because I had a few questions and I went to see how they practiced a little. I just wanted to talk to a couple of the players and some of the coaches," Wilson said. "When I left there, I left feeling good because I got all of my questions answered. The players were real about it and I really appreciated that. So I left there feeling pretty good."

Wilson had already made his official visit to Ohio State during the season but he got to mingle with some other recruits who were there on their official visits last weekend while he was there.

"It was a pretty good set up because I talked to a couple of their recruits too," he said. "I talked to Doug (Worthington) and Brian Hartline but I wasn't really with them because a lot of the other coaches were talking to me. But I really got to spend a lot of time with Ted Ginn Jr. and Troy Smith and they really helped me out a lot with my questions."

Wilson still might take another unofficial trip to Pittsburgh and he may even take an official visit this weekend to Michigan. St. Vincent-St. Mary has a hoop game on Saturday night so it would be a Sunday-Monday trip that he would be taking to Ann Arbor.

"It's real close with all three schools right now because I like what all three of them have to offer," Wilson said. "I'm trying to take it slow right now and look into the whole situation to see how everything is going to end up. I don't want to rush into anything and make a bad decision that I'll be regretting later."

Before he previously committed to the Fighting Irish, Wilson had narrowed it down to Ohio State and Notre Dame but Michigan has now become a player all of the sudden and it currently seems as if Ohio State has assumed an equal position with their rivals to the north and Pittsburgh in the Wilson sweepstakes. Or does it?

"My feelings about the Buckeyes are really high," Wilson said. "After I left there Saturday I really felt confident about them. The Buckeyes are looking real good right now. I really like Ohio State right now."

Basketball is still in the equation for Wilson but it's not really going to have anything to do with determining where he will go.

"The basketball program at Ohio State is up and coming because they got a new coach and everything," said Wilson who has been a mainstay on the AAU circuit for some time. "I think they'll be pretty good because I know a couple of the players that committed last year and they're freshmen right now and they're really good players. Ohio State will be pretty good in the future I know that."

There's so much for Wilson to consider before he commits to another school all over again. It seems as if Notre Dame is indeed out of the picture no matter who they bring in to coach the team now. But he'll likely be called the very first day by whoever their new coach will be.

"It's real tough mentally and emotionally because I have to balance school and balance basketball every day and now I have to balance the recruiting," he said. "When I get home at night I hardly have any time to myself because I have to do homework and talk to coaches, and it's real tough with practice and everything. But I think I'm handling it pretty well and if I keep doing what I'm doing I think I'll be all right in the long. But I want to get it behind me."


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