RECRUITING: Coveted New Jersey safety lists OU

Camden, N.J. safety prospect Antwine Perez, who currently holds over 40 offers, talks about his game, early list and interest in Oklahoma.

ANTWINE PEREZ, S, 6'2, 200, 4.57, CAMDEN (WOODROW WILSON HS), NEW JERSEY:

Antwine Perez fits the new breed of defensive back in college football. He is big, strong, fast, yet has the ability to cover in the secondary.

A starter since his freshman season, Perez has always played free safety, which is the position he feels he will play in college.

"Most college coaches are telling me that I am going to play safety," said Perez. "Some are telling me that I will be a free safety and some a strong safety. Most think I will play free safety because of my ability to cover. Miami is even recruiting me as a cornerback because I can cover so well."

Perez has also been the starting quarterback at Woodrow Wilson since his sophomore year. Last season, h e threw for 1,700 yards and 14 touchdowns. On defense, Perez finished with 58 tackles, seven interceptions, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.

Perez attended the Elite 11 workout at Georgia Tech and he also attended the Elite College Combine recently in New Jersey.

"I just worked out on defense at the New Jersey combine," said Perez. "I thought I did pretty well. I matched up real well with the top receivers there. Miami saw that, and that is why they offered me as a corner. They saw my ability to cover."

Perez can bench 305 pounds, squats 415 and he has posted a 33 ½-inch vertical jump. Perez has been to Penn State this so far this summer, and has even went on a couple of official visits.

"I went on two official visits with my cousin (Turk McBride)" said Perez. "He went on visits to Tennessee and Virginia before his sophomore year, and I went with him. He signed with Tennessee and started at defensive tackle. I am going to go to USC's summer camp. If I can't make it to their summer camp I will definitely make it out there for an unofficial visit. I am also definitely going to make it to Florida and Tennessee."

Perez has been offered by an amazing 43 schools, which is way too many to keep straight.

"I will go to school anywhere, but I want to go to a school that is already established and winning," said Perez. "I don't care about distance, but I do care about a team's tradition. That is why I like USC, Michigan, Florida, Oho State and Oklahoma — schools like that.

"The education part of it is real simple for me because I think at any of these schools I can get a great education. An education is what you put into it, and I can do great things educationally at all of these schools."

So what is it about the Sooners that helps them make his early list?

"I like Oklahoma because they compete every year. They are playing for championships every year and I like how they compete. I think I could go in there and be a nice fit for their defensive scheme. I don't have a favorite and I am wide open right now. By the end of this month I want to narrow my list down to eight schools."

Perez is going to be an early graduate and will sign in December.


Sooners Illustrated Top Stories