Barnett Talks West Coast Swing

Dallas (Texas) Maceo Smith tight end Chris Barnett visited UCLA and USC last week and talks about what each school was like, including one that he said was the best campus that he's seen...

Dallas (Texas) Maceo Smith tight end Chris Barnett made his maiden voyage to the West Coast last week, taking in one day at USC's Rising Stars Camp and another day visiting UCLA unofficially.

"It was a little different out in California, but I loved the weather," said Barnett. "It was a different experience for me, different people and different schools. But it was a really good one."

On Wednesday, Barnett was at USC for Day One of the Rising Stars Camp.

"I had talked to Coach (Lane) Kiffin and Coach (Willie Mack) Garza and they said I was one of the most dominant players there, so that made me feel good," said Barnett. "They're recruiting me as a tight end. They took me on a tour of the campus and the campus and facilities were great. It has kind of that raw edge to it. They say you ain't got to be pretty to kick butt."

On Thursday, Barnett went up to Westwood to visit UCLA.

"That campus was off the chains," said Barnett. "They had the best campus I've ever seen. Facility wise, Arkansas is the best, but campus wise, UCLA is by far the best. Coach (Reggie) Moore took me on a tour and we talked a lot with Coach (Rick) Neuheisel."

Barnett said there is a strong likelihood he makes a return to the Golden State.

"Most definitely I'm interested in going back," said Barnett. "There is an 80% chance I'll visit USC and UCLA officially."

Barnett was joined by fellow Texans, linebacker Anthony Wallace and receiver Ty Montgomery, on his trip and he and Wallace could be announcing their decision in the fall.

"Anthony and me are talking about doing our announcement on ESPN during the middle of the season," said Barnett. "Even if I do commit, though, I'll try and take my official visits."

Barnett said he had a strong top eight prior to the trip, but that has changed.

"I had a top eight, but after taking the trip to USC and UCLA, it's shifted around a little bit," said Barnett. "Oklahoma is my number one, Arkansas is my number two then it's USC, Miami, Florida, UCLA and Alabama."

This weekend, Barnett will be in Tuscaloosa for the Badger/New Level 7on7 and he'll get to take an unofficial tour of Alabama. He's also planning on visiting Mississippi and Mississippi State during his trip, and will be going to Arkansas next month.

The 6-6, 249-pounder said he was clocked at a 4.61 at USC's camp last week.

"I want to stay on offense, but if things happen, schools said I could play linebacker," said Barnett. "I actually got better recognition in the state of Texas for what I've done at linebacker. But I think my potential peak is better at tight end."

Barnett is also a stellar student, carrying a 3.9 GPA and achieving a qualifying test score as a sophomore. He's ranked in the top ten of his class at Maceo Smith.

"When I'm looking at a school, I'm looking for a place that, even if they didn't have a football program, I'd still like to go to school there," said Barnett.

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