'11 RB commit Carlisle taking other visits

Although he made a verbal commitment to Stanford last June, running back Amir Carlisle, now reporting interest from USC and Alabama, has been the subject of numerous rumors concerning the state of that pledge in recent weeks.

To try and get a better picture for where Carlisle stands with his commitment, The Bootleg caught up with the talented prospect this weekend.

"I've heard from a few schools but I'm still solid to Stanford," Carlisle said. "I talk to the coaches and hear what they have to say, but I am solid."

Nonetheless, the 5-foot-11, 178-pound prospect is keeping his options open. In addition to an offer from Cal, Carlisle reports interest from schools like USC and Alabama. The four-star prospect plans to visit a handful of schools in the upcoming months.

"I'm going down to USC to meet their coaches and I'm also taking an unofficial to Alabama in July," Carlisle said. "I also have a camp over at Cal and then Stanford Monday night ball (in June)."

Still, barring anything unforeseen, Carlisle doesn't have plans to drop Stanford for another school.

"To be honest, I'm a Christian first and last and I make my decision based on what I think is best in God's eyes," Carlisle said. "If I felt it was God's will to go elsewhere that's the only way I would leave and decommit. But I think God wants me to go to Stanford and I'm solid."

If Carlisle does end up elsewhere, it won't be because he is worried about the Cardinal bringing in a handful of running back recruits in the 2011 class.

"Oh no, no, no [that wouldn't deter me from going to Stanford]," Carlisle said. "I thrive on the competition and I just think it's better for me because having the guy who's next to me and is also a very good prospect will make me better and make me play that much harder."

The Stanford coaching staff is doing its best to make sure Carlisle stays committed.

Wide receiver coach Pep Hamilton visited Carlisle's high school a few weeks back, head Coach Jim Harbaugh has been in email contact, and recruiting coordinator Lance Anderson has advised Carlisle on the Stanford application process.

"I'm going to take the SAT again in the fall," said Carlisle, who reports a 4.0 or 4.1 GPA. "I took it once before and the score was good enough, but Mr. Anderson asked me to take them again because Admissions likes to see students take it twice. So I think I'm going to take it again in the fall and hopefully it all goes well and I'll be able to get in."

If Carlisle does end up a Cardinal, he will be joining a program with a different flavor than the one he committed to back in June 2009. At the time, Toby Gerhart was still relatively unknown in many parts of the country, and Andrew Luck was just a shoeless quarterback with loads of potential.

Along with the rest of the nation, Carlisle was impressed with what he saw from his future teammates.

"I mean it was very encouraging to see," Carlisle said. "I didn't know what to expect but they had a great season and I was just very happy for the team. It just showed the program is going forward and is going in the right direction. I think when I get there it will continue to go forward and I think BCS Bowl games are in the future."

In the meantime, Carlisle will continue to work on getting his body ready for the rigors of the college game.

"Right now I've been on the track really working on my speed," Carlisle said. "I've also been in the weight room building my upper body and building my strength. My goal going into the season is to be around 185. That's a big goal."

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