Three official visits are already down for Cass Tech (Mich.) four-star safety Jaylen Kelly-Powell. In September, he took in Nebraska and Oregon. Last month, he visited Wisconsin.
Kelly-Powell hasn’t officially narrowed his list down yet, but the school he’s most associated with has been Michigan. He’s set an official visit there next month.
But another school is also in the mix, despite rarely being mentioned publicly. Behind the scenes, Kelly-Powell has stayed in steady contact with Virginia Tech. All the while, he’s still on track to graduate next month, to enroll at the college of his choice in January.
“I’m looking at them,” Kelly-Powell said of the Hokies. “Coach (Brian) Mitchell talks to me. That’s a good school with great coaches. They’ve had good games. I’ve watched them a little bit, when I’ve had a chance to.”
Kelly-Powell has yet to visit Virginia Tech. But one of his teammates, three-star cornerback Donovan Johnson, officially visited there in September.
“He said he had a great time,” Kelly-Powell said. “He said it was fun.”
Kelly-Powell said he’s also stayed in touch with Mitchell. They talk on at least a weekly basis. And there’s a chance Kelly-Powell could take a visit next weekend to Blacksburg.
“I’m still trying to see my schedule,” he said. “It’s in the playoffs, so I really don’t know. But (Mitchell) gives me a lot of advice, about what to do in a game. We talk about football a lot, DB things. How to play this and how to play that, work on what DBs look at. It’s actually pretty cool talking to him.”
The Wolverines are still very squarely in the picture. Kelly-Powell stays in almost daily contact and has an official visit set to Michigan Dec. 11.
“I talk to Coach (Jim) Harbaugh once or twice a week,” he said. “He checks up on me, makes sure I’m ok. I talk to coach (Don) Brown, he’s a great guy. Really, I just talk to everybody. It’s more the relationship with them. A lot of my brothers go there, so they’re telling me things about the culture and how they are. Basically, everything matches up.”
And Kelly-Powell hasn’t forgotten about the three schools he’s already visited, either, Oregon, Nebraska and Wisconsin.
“I’m open-minded with everything,” he said. “I liked the people, especially the fan bases, they’re unbelievable. Especially the environment, they were great. Of course, education is good. Those people support their teams, then the coaches, of course. The players are really good and I got good feedback from them.”
For now, Kelly-Powell is trying to stay focused on the second round of the Michigan state playoffs tonight. But he acknowledges the clock is ticking on a decision if he hopes to be ready for college spring practice.
“Mostly everybody is coming hard,” Kelly-Powell said. “They say the same thing, how they see me and how I fit in their system. Number one is education. There’s no such thing as a bad education, but there’s elite education. Then, the relationship with the coaches and the environment, the players, get to know them. That’s where I’m gonna be the next three or four years.”