After a last-minute trip to Michigan and Ohio State sprang up for Paramus (N.J.) Catholic five-star defensive tackle Rashan Gary, mother Jennifer Coney visited in-state Rutgers alone Saturday night with a list of research questions.
Bother mother and son know Rutgers well – Gary camped at Rutgers as a 7th grader well before he became Scout’s top 2016 prospect – but Coney wanted to see more academically during a long afternoon in Piscataway.
“I wanted to make sure that with all of the athletic things going on and getting a college scholarship to get on, I know that it’s about playing football,” she said. “I didn’t want anything to fall to the wayside regarding academics.
“… Let’s make sure that the academic portion is paid close attention to and the academic support is there for Rashan to play football and still succeed academically. I was pleasantly surprised and very happy with the academic portion that Rutgers has in place for their students.”
Coney encouraged her son to visit both the Buckeyes and Wolverines as the research process continues for New Jersey’s most-coveted prospect.
“He was supposed to be going with me to Rutgers initially but Rashan got an opportunity to go to Michigan and Ohio State, and I said, ‘go see these schools,” she said. “See how you feel about them.’ I’m still going to Rutgers because I have to get the questions answered that I was interested in. Then we can compare our notes when he gets home and go on from there.”
Gary has said in the past that a post-season all-star game or Signing Day decision is in the works. That, however, is subject to change as his visits continue.
Gary has a visit set to Rutgers for its spring game at the end of April, and hopes to visit multiple southeastern schools this spring.
“In fact, that’s why it’s important that Rashan went on those visits,” Coney said on a potential earlier decision. “Before you know it, it’s going to be time to make a decision and we want as much information compiled about what’s important for him, what’s important for me and where he can go and be successful athletically and academically. … It’s an informed decision that both Rashan and I are going to make together.”
Gary visited two of the Big Ten’s top programs alongside other top New Jersey prospects, and returns home Sunday evening.
“I’m really looking forward to getting his take on Ohio State and Michigan,” Coney said. “I know that we’re not going to get everything we want at every school, so let’s negotiate. What’s most important for you? What can you live without? What may they not offer that you have to have? I can’t wait to sit down with him and discuss this.”