June 17, 2012

Weaver's college road trip

Memphis (Tenn.) Harding Academy tight end/defensive end Mack Weaver and his parents spent last week on the road, making stops at Cincinnati, Clemson, Duke, Kentucky, Louisville, North Carolina, Purdue, Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Wake Forest.

The 6-foot-6, 240-pound Weaver, who is rated as a three-star recruit and as the nation's No. 20 prospect by Rivals.com, claims scholarship offers from Arizona State, Arkansas, Ball State, Cincinnati, Clemson, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisville, Memphis, Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Purdue, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Virginia and Western Kentucky.

Ray McCartney is recruiting Weaver for the Demon Deacons.

"He's a good guy," Weaver said. "I really like him. He's a funny guy, and my parents love him also."

Weaver spent Thursday afternoon, June 14 at Wake.

"We got a tour of the facilities," Weaver said. "I loved the campus and I got to talk to some of the players also, just hang out with them for a few minutes and that was really cool. I really loved that campus and everybody that I met."

Wake Forest is one of the schools he can imagine himself attending, but none of his suitors has emerged as a favorite in his recruitment.

Weaver enjoyed a similar jaunt to Chapel Hill, where he toured UNC's campus, met tight ends coach Walt Bell and some of the current Tar Heel players. He said it was a good visit.

The Volunteer State athlete concluded his trip with a stop in Nashville for the "Cookout with the Dores" event at Vanderbilt, which included games, an egg-toss and a pie-eating contest.

"All of the recruits and commits hung out with the players," Weaver said. "We had a really good time. It was just a cookout. It was all of the commits for Vanderbilt, [and] all of their top recruits and had a cookout with the players and all of the coaches, just hung out and had a good time."

"[I'm considering Vandy] pretty seriously. That's really one of the schools that I know most about, because that was one of the first schools I went to and then I've been there a couple more times, so I know a little bit more about that school than a few others. I'm seriously considering every school that I have [been recruited by] to be honest."

Weaver has also developed strong relationships with Herb Hand and Sean Spencer of Vanderbilt, Angelo Mirando of Mississippi State and Maurice Harris of Ole Miss.

"They've really just been talking to me a lot, encouraging me, staying in touch, coaching me on things that I ask them about, just giving me good advice all the time, just really staying in touch," Weaver said.

He hopes to narrow his list of schools down to a top five or 10 by his 17th birthday, July 20.

Weaver said it does not matter if he plays tight end or defensive end in college.

He recorded 78 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 10.5 sacks, four passes defended, three blocked punts and a defensive touchdown to go along with eight receptions for 215 yards and two touchdowns last season.

"I think I have good strength for the high school level," Weaver said. "I think I have really good speed. I have a good size. I think I have good speed for my size and power. I feel like I have a good knowledge of the game."

"Most of them [college coaches] say they really see no reason why I can't come in and play my first year, but it all depends on me. I can pretty much do anything I want to talent-wise when I get to college, but it all depends on me and my work-ethic."

Weaver added about half of the schools on his radar are recruiting him to play defensive end, while the other half like him as a tight end.

He is looking for a school that offers a combination of a great education and athletics program along with a positive family atmosphere.

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