Byrd Says RU "Right Up There" in Recruitment

Timber Creek High (Erial, N.J.) four-star receiver Damiere Byrd followed up his second-place finish at the NJSIAA Meet of Champions on Thursday with a trip to South Carolina. He also will visit Ohio State this month, but questions continue to swirl about his interest level in his homestate school Rutgers. Byrd addressed the issue, and talked about how often he communicates with the Rutgers staff.

SOUTH PLAINFELD, N.J. -- Timber Creek High (Erial, N.J.) four-star receiver Damiere Byrd didn't take long to dwell on his three-hundreths of the second loss to Long Branch (N.J.) High's Miles Shuler in Thursday's NJSIAA Meet of Champions.

Byrd had time to catch his breath, talk to a few friends, family members and teammates, then head to South Carolina for an unofficial visit.

But before heading south, the 5-foot-9, 160-pound Byrd acknowledged a bit of frustration at the perception Rutgers has fallen on his list of possible schools.

So, are the Scarlet Knights still under serious consideration?

"They are. A lot of people actually don't think they are, but I don't know why,'' Byrd said moments after the race. "I get a lot of questions like, ‘You're not going to Rutgers?' But I don't know where all this is coming from. They're right up there with every other school.''

Byrd added he is in constant communication with members of the Scarlet Knights' coaching staff.

"It is frustrating,'' Byrd said. "I don't do anything to neglect them. I talk to the coaches on Facebook all the time. It's not like I ignore them.''

Byrd, like Shuler, holds more than two dozen offers, and Rutgers isn't the only big-time program recruiting him.

In fact, he holds offers from Florida all over the country, from Florida to Boston College to Oregon. He has been to Rutgers several times, including a visit to a spring practice, but doesn't have a full schedule of summer trips. He will visit South Carolina this weekend, and will also travel to Ohio State.

"Right now, that's pretty much it,'' Byrd said. "I don't have any leaders. I haven't really thought about it yet. I've been so busy with track. Right now I have a lot of time, but my first list will probably come out in a few weeks.''

Byrd wasn't ready to divulge any prospective schools on is initial cut-down list.

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