Barksdale Talks Leaders as Decision Nears

One of the most sought after players in the state of Michigan will make his college decision Saturday live at the US Army All-American game. Joseph Barksdale breaks down the three left for his services and why each would make a good destination for him.

Detroit Cass Tech defensive lineman Joseph Barksdale is the lone representative of the state of Michigan down at the US Army All-American game this year. MHSAA rules would make players who partake in the game ineligible for other sports. Barksdale gave up his chance to play other sports to be in San Antonio and he is one of the players who will announce his college decision live on national television during the game.

"A good mix of athletics and academics," Barksdale responded when asked what is going into his final decision. He also added, "coaches who care about who you are, not just the number you wear."

The three hats Barksdale will choose from are Michigan State, LSU and Ohio State and he says it will be a close decision as he felt all three places had strong leaders at the top.

"LSU, Les Miles, he's a Proven winner, he's come in and continued the tradition at LSU and Jim Tressel, his name speaks for itself."

Then there is new Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio, who made it one of his first priorities to recruit the star defensive tackle. Barksdale in turn was impressed with what he had done during his time at the University of Cincinnati.

"They have a good new head coach. He's done some miracles for that Cincy program. Two days after he took the job, he showed up at my school unannounced."

No matter what he decides will be his college destination, the talented tackle has made sure that more went into his decision than just proximity to home.

"Me and my parents talked and the reason they wanted me to come close to home was so they could see games. My coach brought up a really good point that being close to home and seeing games, if that's the biggest part of your worries, that shouldn't be a factor cause you could always see a game."

All week, Barksdale has been part of an East defensive line which arguably has been the most impressive unit on either squad. Being teamed with other tackles such as D'Angelo McCrary and Marvin Austin have contributed to Barksdale's enhanced level of play this week.

"Whenever they put you up against good competition, you're not going to do anything but work harder."

Recruiting fans can find out where Barksdale will play college football during the US Army All-American game Saturday at noon on NBC.

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