Carmichael paying dividends in New Jersey

When Walt Harris and the University of Pittsburgh were putting the finishing touches on their staff, one thing stuck out about the new WR coach. It was his wealth of NFL experience. Most big-time college prospects all entertain the dream of one day playing in the league. It is invaluable to have ex-NFL guys on the staff. The kids know that these guys know what it takes to get to the next level and that is attractive to them.

Teaneck (NJ) WR Oderick Turner (6-3, 180, 4.5) of Teaneck High School is attracted to Pittsburgh for several reasons, but one is the coaching staff of Carmichael and Harris.

"Those guys are real down to earth and I like that."

And what is the other reason?

"They throw the ball and they develop wide receivers."

The recruiting game can become very hectic for most young men and their families, but Oderick has an advantage over most other prospects. His father, Odessa Turner, played in the NFL for the New York Giants and San Francisco 49ers. Odessa earned a Super Bowl ring while with the Giants.

"He helps me with everything. If I get a big head, he keeps me grounded. Having him around helps me so much," said Oderick.

It must be working. Oderick is one of the top wide receivers in New Jersey. He has five scholarship offers to date: Pittsburgh, Wisconsin, NC State, Indiana, and Syracuse. Other programs have been to his school have been showing interest and may be close to offering including Michigan State, Rutgers, Notre Dame, and Virginia Tech.

"Virginia Tech seems real interested in me."

Turner attended the Nike Combine at Penn State and the Elite Combine at the Meadowlands. He felt he did well, but not to his standards.

"I always feel like I can improve and I know I can do better."

During his junior campaign, Oderick earned 1st Team All-League (NNJIL) honors by catching 25 passes for 860 yards and 5 touchdowns.

What would you list as your strengths?

"I always come down with the catch. If it's thrown to me, I'm getting it. Also, I'd say YAC [yards after catch]."

How about, any areas you think you may need to improve on?

"My route running. I need to get quicker on my breaks and my overall strength."

Are there any receivers in the NFL or college that you study and try to style your play after?

"Larry Fitzgerald, he does things that most can't do. He's a big reason why Pittsburgh is one of the teams I like."

What other sports do you play?

"Track indoor and outdoor, I do the high jump, 4x100, and the 4x400. I was All-County and I made it to the state meet, which was today. I only jumped 6'2" though, so I was disappointed. Our 4x400 relay team missed going to state's by one second."

What are the big deciding factors for you when looking at a school?

"I am thinking about majoring in business, so they should have a solid business program. I want to go somewhere I can contribute early."

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