It's approximately seventeen hours driving distance from Miramar (Fla.) to Morgantown (W.Va.), although it feels much closer than that to rising junior Khalil Lewis. Because of the longstanding relationship between Miramar Hich School and WVU, the 2015 wide receiver feels a connection with his "family" up north.
"They say it's a good school and a place to get a good education," Lewis said about former Miramar Patriots who have went on to play for the Mountaineers. "They tell me they have had a good college experience there. I know I've always like the school. I mean, that's where Geno Smith and Stedman Bailey went - so I'm just grateful for the offer."
Because he's had little contact of late with the WVU coaches, Lewis admits he was surprised to hear the news of the Mountaineers' offer.
"I was actually at lunch in school and Coach [Damon] Cogdell called me into the office," he said. "He told me I had an offer from West Virginia. It caught me by surprise. I know they're supposed to come and visit me this week."
Despite a close connection to the program, it's imperative the school Lewis would choose for his services is appealing in other ways. And that's definitely the case at West Virginia.
"The offense - the air raid offense," Lewis said in describing another aspect of the Mountaineer program that's attractive. "I like to just play football and make plays. I want the ball in my hands and make plays."
With his first offer firmly in hand, the 6-foot-1, 185 pound wide-out plans to visit as many schools as possible this summer.
"I plan on visiting a lot of camps this summer," he said. "I expect for everything to advance and I can get more interest.
Since WVU was the first to extend an offer, will that always ring special to Lewis?
"Oh yeah," Lewis exclaimed. "Absolutely!"