Benoist, a 2nd Team All-District and Fort-Worth Star-Telegraph All-Area Super Team selection last season as well as an excellent student in the classroom, is receiving early interest from a variety of schools, ranging from the SEC to the Ivy League.
"Vanderbilt is the highest on my list," said Benoist. who is thinking about majoring in pre-med. "I have an offer from them. I am also pretty interested in Stanford. I'm going to their camp in about two weeks. I also received a call from Mississippi State and a bunch of Ivy League schools such as Harvard, Dartmouth and Yale. I'm not sure if I want to do the Ivy League route, though. I'm going to Arizona's one-day camp this week. They've showed a little bit of interest. I've told their coaches that I will go to their camp. But I'm not really sure how interested they are in me and me in them, to be honest. Early on, I was getting a lot of letters from everywhere. Arkansas was one of them and Baylor and SMU, but they have kind of dropped off."
Of those schools, which ones have made his list of favorites?
"The top schools that I am looking at right now are Vanderbilt and Stanford," said Benoist. "Those are the two that are highest on my list. Mississippi State would be in my top 5. I don't really know who else would be on my list, to be honest. With Vanderbilt offering me, I'm really considering that. And I'm going to Stanford and see what happens up there. Then, I will wait a little bit and make my decision."
It sounds like Benoist is close to making a commitment. Is that the case?
"Yeah, I'm probably going to be an early commit, probably before the season starts," said Benoist. "I want to get all of the recruiting over with so that I can focus on the season."
What is it about Vanderbilt and Stanford that has caused him to be so interested in them?
"Ever since I was little, Vanderbilt and Stanford have always been schools that I was interested in because of their elite status for academics and athletics," said Benoist. " I know Vanderbilt's football team doesn't do that great, but it's in the SEC. I know that it's a great opportunity. I went to Stanford's Palo Alto Nike Camp and saw their campus and really liked it. If they offer, then I'll consider them."
Where does Mississippi State fit into his recruiting picture?
"Coach (Reed) Stringer, who is the tight ends coach, called me (in the spring)," said Benoist. "He wants me to come out to one of their camps and I think I will later on if I haven't already committed by then. I'm thinking about coming down to see my uncle and make it a family thing and then go meet the (MSU) coaches. I'm not really sure right now. If Mississippi State offered me, I would definitely look into it."
Look for additional updates on Patrick Benoist during the summer.
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Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the Dawgs' Bite, Powered by GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing email@example.com.