Barnwell Visits after Loss in State Finals

Piscataway (N.J.) cornerback Nadir Barnwell experienced the highs and lows of being a senior this week. Losing in heart-breaking fashion in the state finals Friday night, Barnwell took his official visit to Rutgers this weekend, where he is set to enroll next month.

Nadir Barnwell saw his high-school career end and got the best glimpse of the next step in his life during the same December weekend.

One day after Piscataway (N.J.) lost in a thrilling 37-33 game against Elizabeth, Barnwell arrived back on Rutgers campus for his official visit. Barnwell is set to graduate early and enroll at next semester, where he will play cornerback.

"Rutgers is the place I want to be and now it's right around the corner," Barnwell said. "My season is over, so I need to get ready for my next step."

Barnwell experienced the full Rutgers official visit. Hosted by freshman Leonte Carroo, Barnwell spent time with the players and coaches, watched a bowl practice and went out in New York.

"I have a great relationship with everyone [at Rutgers] already," Barnwell said. "It means a lot that [defensive coordinator Robb Smith] came out to my game in the rain to support me when he could have been home watching TV with his family."

Announcing his decision earlier this season, Barnwell picked Rutgers before the move to the Big Ten.

"I would want to go to Rutgers anyway, but it's a great move for them," Barnwell said. "It's better competition and exposure. Playing [in the Big Ten] will be great."

Barnwell is one of six currently committed prospects planning on enrolling for the spring. Injuring his right shoulder twice since August, Barnwell said rehab is the first step before starting winter workouts and spring practice.

"My shoulder wasn't 100 percent [for the Elizabeth game]," Barnwell said. "I'm going to rest it now and then get help from the trainers and everybody at Rutgers when I get there."

Before his visit, Barnwell displayed five-star character by facing the media after a loss in the final minute of the game.

"I'm proud of our team because we were huge underdogs," Barnwell said after the game. "My shoulder wasn't 100 percent and we didn't have a typical Piscataway offensive line and we still fought. It hurts a lot right now, but it's something I'm going to look back on and learn from and never forget."


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