Along with head coach John Sanders, the five-star defensive tackle prospect from Scottsdale (Ariz.) Saguaro has received interest from top colleges from across the country. Before his senior season started, Adams and Sanders came up with a plan. Official visits were scheduled, and a date was announced for when he would make a final announcement: Jan. 4, 2009, when Adams would play in the Under Armour All-American game.
But when the ESPN officials approached Sanders prior to the game to make sure Adams was ready, the head coach had to tell them no.
"It was a little surprising to me," Sanders told BuckeyeSports.com. "I'm kind of anxious for him to make the commitment so I can help my lower-level guys. As soon as he makes this decision it makes life easier for everyone around here. I know he's getting close."
Adams did not pull the trigger, Sanders said, primarily because he remains torn between his top schools. Left on the leaderboard are Ohio State, Arizona State and USC. Although he has taken an official visit to Nebraska, Sanders said Adams has informed the Cornhuskers that he is not interested in their program and has dropped them from his list.
Among his top three schools, however, two might be putting some distance from the third. With the announcement that USC defensive coordinator Nick Holt is leaving the program to take the same position at Washington, the Trojans might find themselves behind the Buckeyes and the Sun Devils, Sanders said.
"I think that's going to put them back a little ways," he said.
While at the Under Armour game, Adams was surrounded by some of the top talent in the country. Sanders was there as well, coaching the White squad's cornerbacks.
Watching his star prospect compete against some of the best players in the country was exciting, Sanders said.
"I've known all along how good Corey is, but it's been a lot of fun to put him in what a whole bunch of other guys that are awfully good too," said Sanders, who has coached in the NFL, college and the now-defunct USFL. "To see him go one-on-one in practice against guys who have committed to Florida or other big-time programs, it was just fun to see him go in and handle himself the way he did. He did a great job. It was a great experience to have that many quality kids on the field at once."
While at the Under Armour game, Adams found himself on the same team with OSU verbal commitment C.J. Barnett. On the Black squad were Buckeye commitments Jaamal Berry, Duron Carter, Jack Mewhort and Melvin Fellows.
Adams spent time being wooed by that group of future Buckeyes in addition to some other names associated with the OSU program.
"I had Jim Tressel out here for a full day not long ago," Sanders said. "I had a chance to visit with Cris Carter down there and his son and some Ohio State guys. Of course, they all visited with Corey and tried to sway him to be a Buckeye. We had a great experience. It was really nice."
Tressel is not the only coach to trek to Saguaro to visit. Sanders said USC head man Pete Carroll has recently been there as well, and OSU defensive coordinator Jim Heacock and recruiting coordinator John Peterson were on hand Jan. 6 – one day after the team's loss to Texas in the Fiesta Bowl.
Moving forward, Sanders said he is not sure there is a timetable in place for Adams to make a final decision.
"I haven't pushed him into that," he said. "It was (supposed to be) Sunday night and then something happened. I was talking to him all along, and then when ESPN wanted to go out and get the hats and all that he just said, ‘No, I'm not ready coach.' I said, ‘It's a big decision. Take your time.'
"He really is (torn). He's a quality kid. Otherwise, he would've jumped on ESPN just to be on TV. He's not that kind of kid at all. He's not going on to get his 15 seconds of fame unless he knows."