While he is focusing on the upcoming state track meet, he is still spending enough time getting wooed by college coaches. "Right now I'm hearing from all of the Pac-10, Florida, Florida State, Miami, Michigan, Texas, Tennessee, Notre Dame, Northwestern and Ohio State."
With a slew of schools on his mind, Van said he does have a relatively short list of favorites. "My top 5 are UCLA, Notre Dame, Florida State, Miami and Texas." Van's father, Rodney Sr., recently told Greg Biggins that UCLA was still his top school, but he intends to go through the recruiting process before he makes a commitment.
Rodney Sr. said "Miami came to the school and said they were very interested in recruiting both Rodney and Derrick Jones (Poly's fast and talented wide receiver). Notre Dame Coach Ty Willingham called and said they would be coming by the school, as have Texas and Florida State."
Van, though, said he's made some good connections at UCLA. "Coach Embree is the one who is recruiting me, and I met with him on my unofficial visit and really liked him. It was a nice experience. Coach Dorrell is a quiet man but I think he is real cool. I watched him during practice and he likes to get in and show guys how to do things. He is real hands-on."
Van went to the Los Angeles Nike Camp, and while he didn't do any testing, he was one of the top players in the one-on-one drills, and one of the best defensive backs who participated. He said, "I was the DB MVP and had 5 deflections in the drills, but I didn't test cause Arcadia was the night before and I was still a little tired."
At the Moore League Championships, Van was the League Champ in the long jump, 400m and 4x100. And track will be a deciding point for him in college. "I want to go to a place that will actually let me run track, not just say they will to get me there, but actually will let me run. Track is going to be a big part of my decision in where I go."
With so many schools on his list, Van would like to take all of his trips, and take another unofficial to UCLA. But if the time is right, he said could commit and get it over with. "I'd like to take all of my trips, but if I know the time is right, I will commit and focus on the season. My parents would like me to stay in state, close to home, but they will support me all the way."
Van has a 2.5 GPA and took the Sat for the first time on May 3rd.