The 6-foot-5, 300-pound offensive tackle was one of the many juniors on Rutgers campus Saturday, but it wasn't his first exposure to the school. Not by a long shot, and it is the reason he is listing Rutgers as his early favorite as he has offers from the Scarlet Knights, Boston College and Connecticut and is getting strong interest from West Virginia, Purdue and North Carolina State.
"Rutgers is in the lead," Mahon said. "I feel like that is the place that will develop me not only as a player, but as a man.
"I believe I know them really well. You always get to know people more, but I feel like I've built a great relationship and have a great start with them."
Mahon visited Connecticut and Boston College as well, but did not get the depth of information he received during his latest unofficial visit to Piscataway.
"It was nice to see how if I went to Rutgers, what my day would be like," Mahon said. "So, wake up, go out to eat at the dining hall and then come to the morning meetings. I'm a visual learner, and I think what they do is go over films for practice, and it really helps. I like how they did that.
"(Offensive line) coach (Kyle) Flood is an amazing guy. I've talked to him for a while, and he is really truly amazing. I love his style of coaching and the intensity he brings to the table. I don't think I ever heard him say a negative thing, and I really like that about him. He's a very positive-criticism kind of guy, and very good at motivating."
After academic presentations and sitting in with the offensive line during pre-practice meetings, Mahon took in practice. And he spent plenty of time talking with fellow class of 2013 standouts Brad Henson, an offensive lineman from Monsignor Donovan (Toms River, N.J.) and Garrett Sickels, a defensive end from Red Bank Regional (Little Silver, N.J.).
"The three of us went in and talked to coach Schiano and he was saying he likes his Jersey boys and he wants to keep us there," Mahon said. "It's really important (to hear it). It shows you work hard and people notice. It's actually a great feeling that your 16 years old and people want you to come to their college."
Mahon also doesn't feel the pull to go far from home.
"I'd like to stay close to home and somewhere my family could see me," he said. "Not necessarily Rutgers, but Penn State is close to home, UConn is close to home, Boston College is close to home. I wouldn't see myself going across the county to USC or down to Florida, because there's no need to. There are great schools up here."