Commentary

Top Carolina prospects on display

The latest news and notes from recruits at the Nike combine

Originally Published: February 23, 2009
By Jc Shurburtt | Scouts Inc.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Sunday's Nike Combine featured several of the top football prospects from across the Carolinas. Here's a look at some of the recruiting news and notes that came from the event, including the latest on several fast-rising prospects who competed.

Cornerback Victor Hampton (Charlotte, N.C./Independence) is the next highly recruited prospect to come out of his high school. Hampton claims offers from Florida, Clemson, North Carolina State, North Carolina, Georgia and South Carolina.

"I like Florida, Georgia and Clemson right now," Hampton said. "Those three are really standing out."

At this point, call the Gators the favorites here. But the Bulldogs have signed several prospects out of Independence in recent years, including cornerback Makiri Pugh, quarterback Joe Cox and receiver Mohamed Massaquoi, who was a senior in 2008. Clemson also had success getting Under Armour All-American Devonte Holloman committed out of the school from the Class of 2009. Holloman ultimately transferred to South Pointe High in Rock Hill, S.C., then ended up signing with and enrolling at South Carolina in January.

Impressed

Hampton's high school teammate, linebacker Courtland Carson, is quite an impressive young man to talk with. Presently, Stanford, Yale, Wake Forest, North Carolina State, Duke and Harvard are the schools he is most interested in. More impressive than this list of schools known more for academics than athletics is what the 6-foot, 195-pounder wants to do as a career.

"I want to be a doctor," Carson said. "I want to deliver babies."

Carson has been delivering a bunch of tackles on the field for Independence. He had 130 tackles last season.

Cann's stock is rising

ESPNU 150 Watch List offensive lineman/defensive lineman A.J. Cann (Bamberg, S.C./Bamberg-Erhardt) picked up scholarship offers from Florida, Tennessee and Michigan this past week. The 6-foot-3, 260-pounder is a versatile prospect who could potentially play on either side of the ball. Most schools like him as an interior offensive lineman.

South Carolina, Oklahoma and Clemson are rumored as being his current top three, but Cann continues with unofficial visits -- this coming weekend he'll take a trip to North Carolina. He will visit Clemson on the weekend of March 7 and plans to attend the Athens Nike Camp on April 26 at Georgia.

"I am going to let everybody recruit me," he said.

So is Chaney

Athlete Ricky Chaney (Beaufort, S.C./Battery Creek) attended junior day at Clemson on Saturday and says the Tigers extended him a verbal scholarship offer.

"I did like the school," he said. "It was a good athletic program."

There has been a lot of buzz about the 6-foot-2, 188-pounder, who projects as a strong safety or outside linebacker in college. Chaney had 37 tackles last season at the high school alma mater of former Florida State running back Greg Jones.

Chaney said he has no leader, but he is interested in Georgia, Michigan, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Tennessee and Auburn.

Wilkins is a player

Sleeper athlete Reggie Wilkins (Shelby, N.C./Crest) had more than 800 yards of total offense and 18 touchdowns during an all-conference season in 2008. N.C. State has made the smart move of offering to the versatile, big-play athlete. You can expect other schools to follow once word gets out about Wilkins.

Kilgo likes the Heels

Defensive tackle Darius Kilgo (Matthews, N.C./Weddington) holds a scholarship offer from Illinois, but he is getting attention from North Carolina, N.C. State, Clemson and Auburn. The 6-foot-4, 314-pounder says he plans to head to UNC for its junior day and will head to Auburn on March 2 for an unofficial visit. At this point, the Tar Heels can get him if they make an offer to him.

Tight end emerges

Tight end/defensive end Farrington Huguenin (Columbia, S.C./Dreher) ran a stellar 4.26-second pro shuttle at the event.

Greene in Scarlet?

ESPNU 150 Watch List running back Mustafa Greene (Columbia, S.C./Irmo) is wide open in terms of where he wants to go to school. At this point, he wants to get out of state. Georgia, Alabama, Notre Dame and Florida all are schools that he mentioned. There are two programs, however, to watch closely here. One is the Gators if they want him. The other is Rutgers. Greene has ties to the New York area, and if the Scarlet Knights get involved, they could become major players.

More interest for Boone

Duke recruit Anthony Boone (Charlotte/Weddington) says Virginia and Clemson are close to offering, but he is firm to the Blue Devils.

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JC Shurburtt covers recruiting for ESPN.com. He can be reached at jcsespn@aol.com.