MURFREESBORO, Tenn. — Of all the college football programs in the nation, the first to show Obinna Eze what life on the next level looks like was Tennessee.
That experience has stuck with the Scout No. 208 prospect in the 2017 class, but it has not equalled a verbal commitment for the Volunteers.
“I’m still completely wide open,” Eze told InsideTennessee. “Not because I don’t feel like I have good schools that I might be able to go to and have a good future in. For me, it’s not about being greedy for offers. It’s about being open for a relationship. I want to know that I surveyed everything that I can. I want to know that I knew everything that I can, checked on everything that I can, gave every school an opportunity to have a relationship with me as much as I can so that when I make my choice, I’m going to be satisfied with it. I don’t want to have any regrets with it. Right now, I’m just laid back and trying to have a relationship with everyone. It’s hard but I’m just trying.”
Several programs like Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Georgia and LSU have all put offers on the table and are in direct competition with the Big Orange.
A satellite camp in the mid-state gave Tennessee a chance to work on its relationship with the 6-foot-7, 270-pounder. Eze got one-on-one work in with Tennessee offensive line coach Don Mahoney at the STATEment Day Camp at Tennessee State University in Nashville earlier this month.
“Every camp I go to, I get out of it better technique,” the Davidson (Tenn.) Academy standout said, “but most importantly I go to camps to get to know the coaches, see how they coach because I believe talking to a coach on the phone and him coaching you are two different things. You get to see his temper, how much you can take, how much he’s willing to endure for you. I went to that camp because I wanted to get to know coach Mahoney better, and I feel like I did.”
The lengthy blocker said he’s gotten attention from Mahoney, coach Butch Jones and other Tennessee staffers since the satellite camp.
“They show me a lot of love,” said Eze, who’s moved up to four-star prospect status and the No. 24 offensive tackle in the country.
Eze doesn’t know if he will take all five officials but Michigan is a school getting strong consideration for one.
The Nigerian transplant and Nashville resident continues to express his gratitude for not only the introduction to football but the free education that will come with it.
“I’m grateful to God for where he’s put me,” Eze said. “There’s a lot of tall, big kids like me with measurables like me. You know what I mean? But, it’s just Grace of God that makes people different and distinguished as people. I feel like God has put me in position where I have people who overlook me a lot and helped me get better in a short time. I know I’ve put in work but at the same time I’m humble about it and grateful about it. It’s just an opportunity.
“It’s all new experiences for me. I’m just willing to jump on them and see what they look like.”