Pattenburg plans Vanderbilt visit

With 18 scholarship offers to his credit, John Plattenburg Jr. of Centennial High School in Corona, Calif., can afford to be choosy in making a college decision. The 5-foot-11, 182-pound defensive back says academics will play a big factor in his appears college decision which bodes well for Vanderbilt in their efforts to lure Plattenburg out of The Golden State.

With 18 scholarship offers to his credit, John Plattenburg Jr. of Centennial High School in Corona, Calif., can afford to be choosy in making a college decision. The 5-foot-11, 182-pound defensive back says academics will play a big factor in his appears college decision which bodes well for Vanderbilt in their efforts to lure Plattenburg out of The Golden State.

"Vanderbilt's offer came a couple of weeks ago," Plattenburg told VandyMania.com. "Actually my head coach was talking to them about a few of the players when they came to my school. I got called into the office and Coach Shoop talked a little about what defense they run, what they're trying to do with the program, and how prestigious they were academically.

"The offer meant a lot to me. It was my first SEC offer. That's such a big conference for football. They play a different brand of football down there. I'm anxious to take a trip to Vanderbilt here in the next few months to see what they're all about in person.

"Coach Shoop liked my technique with my speed and physicality. Instead of looking at just raw athleticism, he told me I had great technique playing defensive back."

Originally from the Houston area, Plattenburg played at Lamar High School as a freshman. After moving to Southern California, he played running back his first year at Centennial. His junior year marked his first in the secondary and made a big impact helping Centennial to the CIF State Open Division Championship game.

"We played 16 games like an NFL schedule," Plattenburg said on his junior season. "I started all the regular season games at safety but moved over to cornerback during the playoffs. I had 78 tackles, five interceptions, six or seven pass breakups, two fumble recoveries, and one touchdown on a kick return."

This spring Plattenburg made a visit to Cal-Berkeley and plans on visiting UCLA this weekend. He's been offered by nine Pac-12 schools, Baylor and TCU from his home state of Texas, and recently by Ole Miss. As for now, Plattenburg says he's still open on making a decision on his future.

"It still early," he said. "The evaluation period isn't even over with yet. I'm listening to all of the coaches and what they have to say, getting details on the programs, and building good relationships. At the end of the recruiting process, I want to have a good reason for choosing that particular school. Geography and the weather won't play a factor in my decision. I'm looking for a place I can be comfortable at for the next four years or more no matter what. I want to find a great atmosphere with good teammates and especially good coaches. They got to have good academics. I'm looking into pre-law, physical therapy, or finance programs. It's my decision but I want my mom to like it too."

Plattenburg was named defensive back M.V.P. at the Nike NFSC Combine in Oakland last weekend. In the Centennial Spring Game, he had four pass breakups and one interception.

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