An Exciting Visit for Carolina Athlete

Versatile junior Thompkins made his first unofficial trip to Penn State last weekend. He liked what he saw and heard.

Out of all the words that could have described Penn State 24-21 victory over Wisconsin Saturday, DeAndre Thompkins chose “exciting.”

The same word could be used to describe the Swansboro (N.C.) High Class of 2014 wide receiver/running backs' play. This past season he for rushed for well over 1,000 yards, entered double digits in touchdowns and ran a 4.41 40 yard-dash. He's attracted looks from major college program.

He impressing the Nittany Lions staff enough to earn an offer early November. And he was impressed with his first unofficial visit to University Park.

“It was an amazing place. I loved the environment and the coaches,” Thompkins said. The North Carolina prep standout is up to seven verbal offers so far as he enters the off-season.

“What stood out to me most was the excitement to play -- and the excitement from the coaches to win the game not only for the seniors, but also for the whole team,” he said.

But the game was only part of Thompkins weekend in Happy Valley, which included some time with his recruiting coach, Nittany Lion defensive coordinator Ted Roof, and other members of the Nittany Lions' staff.

“I came up on Friday and met with all the coaches and some players that were around,” Thompkins said. “It was great. I talked with some academic advisers, head coach [Bill] O'Brien, wide receivers coach [Stan] Hixon, and some other recruits that were there.”

The one-on-one time with members of the staff resonated well with the junior athlete,.

“When I talked to the staff, they told me that they would love for me to go to Penn State, but they also want the best for me, even if that's not Penn State,” Thompkins said. “They also told me they thought I'm a great person, and someone that would classify as a Penn State guy.”

There's a long time until Thompkins has to make any serious decisions in his recruiting process, but it has to start somewhere.

And last weekend, it started on the right foot for Penn State and Thompkins.

“I got the feeling that if I do decide to go there, I will be treated well, and become the best all-around person and player I can be,” he said.

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