Is Damiere Byrd Close to a PSU Offer?

Highly regarded New Jersey athlete Damiere Byrd talks to FOS about his visit to PSU at the Nike Camp, his offer from Florida and other recent news.

Damiere Byrd remembers getting his first offer last November. It was late in the month and he got a call from a coach at Maryland, telling him they had gotten done watching his tape and were impressed. All Byrd could muster was a simple acceptance and thank you.

Since then, Byrd has been saying "thank you" an awful lot from his south Jersey home.

Right now, the Timber Creek athlete is among the most highly recruited players in the Northeast, hauling in offers first from the Terps last November then South Carolina, Rutgers and UConn. That was just the start for Byrd, who just got an offer from Baylor this past Thursday. Byrd said he hasn't been overwhelmed yet but he is enjoying the whirlwind of the ride.

One of the big offers for the athlete comes from Florida. Byrd said that the Gators are recruiting him to play all three ways, as a receiver, returner or in the secondary. His blistering speed, the Gators tell him, would be an asset in Gainesville. As such, the coaching staff at the SEC program is advising him that it will put him in the best position to play and make an impact.

Byrd, for his part, says it doesn't matter whether it is offense or defense.

"As long as I help my team, that's all that matters," Byrd said.

He claims no early favorites and stated that he will take his decision down until signing day. He's taken a number of visits so far and recently attended the Nike Camp at Penn State a few weeks ago. It was his first visit to State College and he left impressed.

"It was great, the stadium and facilities were great," Byrd said. "It was a real nice campus too."

Earlier this week, Ron Vanderlinden from the Nittany Lions' paid a visit to his high school and sat down with Byrd. While earlier reports had him holding an offer from Penn State, Byrd confirmed that he did not and has not received a scholarship offer from the school. Byrd said that recent personnel moves on the team may have changed things for the program as the staff may now look to add a receiver in this class.

"Originally, I was told they weren't really looking at taking a receiver in this class," Byrd said.

Byrd noted that Penn State had told them they had limited scholarships this year and that previous recruiting classes were loaded with wide receivers, thus not making it a need for the program. All that may have changed as Penn State appears to be upping their interest in the player.

One of the fastest players in the Northeast, Byrd is running spring track for Timber Creek and plans to begin focusing on recruiting once track season is complete.

Kristian R. Dyer can be reached for questions, comments and crude remarks at

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