The first one is simple for the 5-foot-10, 180-pound safety from Our Lady Good Counsel (Olney, MD). After helping his team win the state title last year, Countess, who finished his junior season with 50 tackles, 20 pass breakups and a kick return for a touchdown, wants to win again.
"The biggest thing is repeating as state champions," Countess told Badger Nation. "As a team, we need to come together and play for each other. If that happens, we think we can do that."
The other important thing on Countess' mind is narrowing his list even further. Countess is up to 15 offers after getting a scholarship from Tennessee, but the four-star cornerback (ranked No.17 in the country by Scout.com) is seeing certain schools become aggressive in his recruitment.
"I haven't narrowed my list yet, but I am hearing a lot from Tennessee, Louisville, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Purdue and Cincinnati," Countess said. "Those are the ones that are recruiting me the hardest right now."
One of the schools absent from that list is Wisconsin, a school that Countess was high on when the Badgers and former Defensive Backs Coach Kerry Cooks made the early offer while watching former teammate Frank Tamakloe – a freshman in UW's secondary. Since then, the interest has waned.
"They are recruiting me a little bit, but not too much though," Countess admitted. "They told me that they aren't taking too many DBs this year, so I don't know how that's going. I might visit them, but I am not too sure."
Another couple of Countess' former teammates, cornerbacks E.J. Scott and Louis Young, are playing at the college level with Virginia and Georgia Tech, respectively, helping keep those two schools in the mix.
"I talk to those two guys a lot," said Countess of his former cornerbacks. "Both of them tell me to ask a lot of questions and to be honest with the coaches so that I can better figure out my decision."
Countess has been doing that, visiting Wake Forest in February and Louisville and Virginia in the past month. Next up are trips to Georgia Tech and Tennessee this weekend for an unofficial, Virginia Tech for a camp and finishing up with a trip possibly out to USC.
"I want to get a better understanding of the facilities and see the campus," Countess said. "I know it's kind of hard with it being summer time, but I want to get a feel for these places, what kind of activities there are, what it's like off campus and see the whole environment.
"I want meet the coaching staffs so I can get to know them better and sit down with the academic counselors to see what they feel about the football program and players. Little things like that you can't find out from talking to one coach over the phone."
Countess is no sure if he will take an official visit, hoping to make his choice in the coming weeks. He admits to taking the process slow, but won't hesitate making a decision.
"I am not going to waste everybody's time if I know where I want to go," Countess said.