After Elkton (Md.) Eastern Christian standout linebacker Dele' Harding’s Rutgers official visit concluded Friday afternoon, his high school head coach offered an educated guess about National Signing Day.
Eastern Christian head coach Dwayne Thomas did not attend the visit with Harding but he was in the home last week for a visit with Rutgers head coach Chris Ash.
“If I was a gambling man, I think that Dele’ would be committed to Rutgers at the end of this,” Thomas said. “I told coach Ash that my feeling that Dele’ is going to commit to Rutgers. That’s my feeling, but it’s not me making the decision.”
Harding made an early official visit with his father because of weather concerns in the area. He left Friday after a meeting with Ash and has one more official visit before he makes a final decision.
Harding officially visits Illinois next week and also has Virginia Tech interest.
“He loves Rutgers and I told Ash that,” Thomas said. “The guy at Illinois (special teams coach Jeff Hecklinski) is a guy who recruited some of my guys to Michigan, so he’s familiar with our school and how we operate. With Heck giving a call, it was out of respect for him.”
The focus Thursday for Harding was on academics because of his experience at the school
“We’re not far from that campus so he’s been to Rutgers a half-dozen times over the years with 7-on-7s and games and so on,” Thomas said. “He and his dad went to check out the academic portion of the school and they liked the school a lot. “
Thomas is a self-described “Jersey guy,” and the changes at Rutgers are exciting to him.
“I was totally and utterly impressed with coach Ash,” he said. “I met him at Dele’s home last Saturday I believe it was, and I was thoroughly impressed. I think Dele’ and his dad were equally impressed. He was very precise and concise and I think he has the ability to move Rutgers into a place where we’d all like to see Rutgers be.”