Atkins ready to visit Pitt

The University of Pittsburgh would like to add another defensive end to its stellar '06 recruiting class. Standout defensive end prospect Geno Atkins (6-ft-2 ½ inches, 265 pounds) from St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Ft. Lauderdale, FL would make an excellent addition. Atkins, whose father played in the NFL, is scheduled to take his official visit this weekend.

"I've been waiting to visit Pittsburgh through the holiday. I'm curious to see what they are all about," stated Atkins. "The only other school I have been too has been North Carolina State. The Pitt visit will give me something to compare it to. My family would like to me take all four of my scheduled visits."

Atkins is capable of running a 4.7 forty-yard dash at nearly 270 pounds. He finished his senior season with 67 tackles, 7.5 sacks and 18.5 tackles for losses. Geno was named the Florida Class 5A Player of the Year.

"Coach (Charlie) Partridge is a great guy and I have got to know him better. He would be my position coach if I go to Pitt. Coach Partridge likes my size and speed. I can explode off the ball and my quickness surprises people. I can bull rush more effectively than smaller ends."

St. Thomas Aquinas High School lost in the state championship to Lakeland (Fla.) High School 39-10 and finished the season at 14-1. Atkins visited North Carolina State in mid-December (12/16). He will visit Auburn January 13th and Michigan State January 20th.

Auburn, Pitt, Colorado, Iowa State, North Carolina State, South Florida, Toledo and Vanderbilt have extended Geno scholarship offers. He led the Raiders in tackles as a junior registering 55 total tackles (12 for a loss) and 2 sacks. He currently has a 2.6 grade point average.

"I would like to major in business so I want to see what their business department is like. Academics is just as important to me as football. I want to meet more of the players and coaches and see how I fit in as well. It's going to be great talking with Coach (Dave) Wannstedt. He has professional experience and that's a big plus to me."

Harry G. Psaros can be contacted at

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