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May 1, 2012Right now, defensive tackle is one of Purdue's deepest, most experienced positions.
A year from now, though, the upperclassmen-heavy position will be on the verge of being decimated by graduation. Thus the need for the Boilermaker coaching staff to work toward replenishing it now.
ROne of its top early targets would seem to be Pennsylvanian Hunter Knighton of the Hun School in New Jersey.
The 6-foot-6, 286-pound two-way lineman is traveling to West Lafayette Tuesday for a Purdue visit that'll last through Wednesday.
"I've talked to Coach (Kevin) Maurice and Coach (Danny) Hope over the phone and they seem like really good guys, people I'd like to play for," Knighton said. "Then, it's the reputation of Purdue as a school and in that they've had a pretty good football program. That combination's what I'm looking for in a school."
Rutgers, Buffalo, Massachussets, Navy and Old Dominion join Purdue as those who've offered Knighton.
Duke, Miami, Nebraska, Connecticut, Boston College and Pittsburgh are also interested, he said.
The Purdue visit, Knighton said, is likely to be his last of the spring, after he's already been to Rutgers, Navy, UMASS and Boston College.
Opinion is split on where Knighton fits best as a college player.
"Schools like UMASS and Navy have said I could play either (offense or defense) for them," Knighton said. "Rutgers and Purdue and Buffalo want me for defense. Nebraska came in (Monday) and said they like me for offense. It's a variety."
He has the size to player either way.
"My coach here still calls me skinny, so I think I have lots of room to put on weight," Knighton said. "Then, depending on whether it's offense or defense, that would determine how far I'd have to go, but I could see myself being 300 or 315.
On defense, Knighton said, he'd project as a gap tackle; on offense, he thinks he could play either tackle or guard.
"(Colleges) like the tempo I play at," Knighton said, "that I play with a lot of energy and toughness.
"(Purdue) said they like how I'm explosive and how I move, that they can tell me I'm really athletic, which is why they want me for D-tackle."
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