Five-Star DE Hamilton has "top choice"

Five-star defensive end Darius Hamilton has a busy June planned, where he will visit multiple schools across the country. Hamilton told his current "top choice" before his series of unofficial visits and when he will cut his list. Where does Rutgers stand? Come inside and find out.

Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.) defensive end Darius Hamilton has a "top choice" at this stage in his recruitment — Rutgers.

When asked if Rutgers will make the cut when he trims his list to 10 or five schools this June, Hamilton said "yes, no doubt."

"They're my top choice right now," he said.

There is still a long way to go in the five-star defensive end's recruiting journey, but Rutgers is in good standing, he said.

"It's about the atmosphere," Hamilton said. "It's like it is at Bosco. It's about family and success in every aspect of life. I like the coaches, I know a lot of the players and it's like family."

Hamilton said his close relationships with quarterback Gary Nova and halfback Paul Canevari, who both began classes at Rutgers Tuesday, adds to the family atmosphere at Rutgers.

"It definitely means a lot," Hamilton said. "They're both big-time players. Gary is one of the best quarterbacks I've ever been around and Paul is just a gamer. I would love to play with both of them again."

Mohamed Sanu has a good relationship with Hamilton, he said.

But the relationships with assistant coach Jeff Hafley and head coach Greg Schiano are two that he highly values.

"When he was at Pitt, Coach Hafley was the first to ever come to me and offer me a scholarship," Hamilton said. "When everything went down there, he promised me that no matter where he went, he would still be there recruiting me. ... He followed through. He's still after me the hardest."

Hamilton said he has not known Schiano as long as Hafley, but really likes the relationship he has built with the head man on the Banks.

"Coach Schiano is a great coach," Hamilton said. "We all know they had a disappointing season last year and they have much higher expectations now after 2006. They're already getting on the right path."

Hamilton joked that the biggest step on that path was adding two kids from Bosco in this year's class, but then said staying home and keeping New Jersey athletes in New Jersey is "important" to him.

"It's nice to see Rutgers is doing that and it's starting to spread," Hamilton said. "There is a lot of talent here."

Hamilton will definitely visit Florida and California in June and would like to also see Oregon, he said. When he gets back home, he will cut his list to either 10 or five schools.

Rutgers "definitely" makes that cut.

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