Commentary

Swilling Jr. decides to focus on football

Son of former NFL star, Swilling hearing from many of the nation's top programs

Originally Published: September 21, 2009
By Derek Ponamsky | EyeOnTheTigers.com

Senior defensive back Pat Swilling Jr. (New Orleans, La./Brother Martin) has had a big decision to make very early in the recruiting process. A talented football and basketball player, Swilling has had to decide what sport he would like to focus on when he gets to college. After a long period of deliberation, he made his choice.

"I made a decision to play college football. My family has been thinking about what is best for me, and we believe this is it. Basketball is not out of the picture, but I think football is the best thing for me. " Swilling said.

Swilling's father, Pat Sr. is a former NFL All-Pro outside linebacker for the New Orleans Saints and the Detroit Lions who played collegiate ball at Georgia Tech.

Brother Martin coach Mark Bonis said that he and the Swillings talked about the younger Swilling's decision. "I got the word from him, as well as his dad, about a month ago. "

Bonis has been very happy with Swilling this season, and the focus on football is something Bonis thinks is the best decision the Swillings could have made.

"He's one of those guys that you put athlete after his name. People sign athletes all of the time, but he's an athlete who is a tremendous football player. There is not much he can't do athletically. That's the best way I can put it." Bonis said.

"He's 6-4, 230 and fast. I think people are overlooking him as a safety. He has tremendous ball skills and smarts for the football. Depending on the system he goes into I think he can do so many things."

As a cornerback at Brother Martin Swilling has been very productive. In the season opener against Glen Oaks Swilling had an interception return for a touchdown.

Swilling is now trying to focus on his senior season, knowing that his recruiting is going to start picking up.

"Recruiting is going well, I have kept in touch with some schools and have some new schools calling me now that they season has started. Everything is speeding up." Swilling said.

While many schools were concerned about whether Swilling was going to play college football, they did not stop contacting him .

"Ole Miss, Georgia Tech , LSU, Kentucky, Tulsa, Michigan, Virginia, Colorado, Georgia, Tennessee and Oregon all talk to me." Swilling said. When asked who were the new schools he replied, "Kentucky, Ole Miss, Colorado and Oregon."

As with most young men early in the process Swilling has a few things he wants to check out before narrowing his list. "Academics, coaching staff, tradition, can they help me get to where I want to get to. " Swilling said.

With the decision of what sport to play having to come first, Swilling says he has no favorites. He now wants to take a few trips to see some of the programs that are interested in him.

"We are going to plan to trip to Georgia Tech, my dad wants me to see them. Definitely going to see LSU, they are right around the corner. And probably visit Georgia, Tennessee and Ole Miss." Swilling said.

Following in his father's footsteps is not something Swilling has though about. But he has strong interest in finding out more about the Yellow Jackets.

"My dad isn't pressuring me to go to Tech. My family has a lot of tradition at Tech, but he wants what is best for me." Swilling added.

Swilling has put thoughts into one school on his list.

"LSU is intriguing. It's my home school and I grew up watching the purple and gold all of my life. I have a lot of friends that go to LSU, and I have a close friend who plays on LSU's football team and some friends who play basketball there. So it's intriguing for me to go to LSU. I have a few friends who have committed to them for the 2010 season, so they definitely interest me."

Having a great resource at home to talk about the recruiting process has been helpful for the younger Swilling.

"My dad has been a great help in my decision making. He has been through this before, and I can use his knowledge to make my best decision."


A look around at some of the best ESPN affiliate team sites have to offer today. Some of the following links may require a premium subscription to the ESPN affiliate site.

Alabama Crimson Tide (www.crimsonconfidential.com)

Tide recruits impressed with Bama blowout.

Auburn Tigers (www.auburnundercover.com)

UA All-America OL Eric Mack ready to decommit South Carolina for Auburn?

Clemson Tigers (www.theclemsoninsider.com)

ATH Vic Beasley no longer firm with his commitment to the Tigers.

Catching up with three-star OT Kalon Davis.

Kentucky Wildcats (www.kentuckyink.com)

Kentucky LB McDuffen commits to UK.

Ole Miss Rebels (www.insidethegrove.com)

Top 2011 target has an early leader.

Jackson (Miss.) LB Pack Toler takes unofficial to Ole Miss.

ATH Matthew Wells ejoys Oxford visit.

Notre Dame Fighting Irish (www.irishsportsdaily.com)

Did the Irish pull even with Miami for Under Armour All-American defensive tackle?

Under Armour All-American CB Toney Hurd talks ND and what's next for him.

Ohio State Buckeyes (www.bucknuts.com)

UA All-American LB Jordan Hicks talks about his visit to Florida.

Oregon Ducks (www.duckterritory.com)

2011 Florida safety favors Oregon.

Penn State Nittany Lions (www.nittanynetwork.com)

Easley does it: Lions land UA All-American.

Penn State next up for WR Kenny Stills.

USC Trojans (www.wearesc.com)

ESPNU 150 RB D.J. Morgan clears up rumors about his commitment to USC.

So what did recruits think of Washington's upset of USC?

Texas Longhorns (www.insidetexas.com)

Watching Texas DB commit Carrington Byndom.