Holy Cross (Covington, KY) High School linebacker, Derrick Barnes received his Toledo offer back in February. Since then, he has been receiving interest from schools such as Eastern Michigan, Eastern Kentucky, Western Kentucky and Tennessee-Martin, whom he all had offers from. However, Barnes says that Toledo and Western Kentucky were the two programs showing extreme interest in his abilities.
The six-foot-four, 240-pound Kentucky product recorded 126 tackles as a junior in 2015 and became a top recruit in the state of Kentucky. Despite not receiving major interest from top programs, Barnes stood out to the Toledo coaching staff all along.
"I knew Toledo was the school for me," Barnes told us, "They made me feel special and I know I could reach my goals there."
Barnes, who adds depth and potential to the 2017 class, is a bulky linebacker who is a crucial run stopping threat up the middle.
"I really like the coaches and staff," he stated, "They care and they show how much they want you. You can really feel the family-like atmosphere and I know they can make me achieve all of my goals, they never doubted me."
On his four visits to Toledo, including a recent visit on July 30th, Barnes was able to familiarize himself with a few members of the 2017 class already verbally committed to the Rockets, including quarterback Caleb Martin.
"The campus and living condition and everything felt close to the field and facility," he told us. "Plus, I got to meet Caleb (Martin) and a few other guys."
Now that he is verbally committed to Toledo and has found his future home, Barnes says he is focused on bettering himself in the Glass City.
"I work extremely hard, I dedicate and sacrifice for my team. Toledo is getting a game changer," Barnes continued.
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