May 7, 2008

Interest not slowing down for AR five-star

When the University of Arkansas landed a commitment from West Helena (Ark.) Central cornerback Darius Winston, it had to take the good with the bad.

The good was that the Razorbacks were getting a commitment from a player dubbed Rivals.com's No. 2 cornerback in the nation and a five-star prospect. The bad is that landing a prospect of his caliber means that a signature on National Signing Day will likely come only after staving off college football's elite programs.

Already with offers from some of the nation's best schools such as Georgia, LSU, Oklahoma and Michigan, Winston may be close to picking up two more offers from some recruiting heavyweights.

"Florida and USC have been showing me a lot of interest," Winston said. "Florida started sending me mail and I've been getting emails from USC. I mean, it kind of makes me feel proud that a prestigious school like USC would want to offer me. That makes me feel pretty good. Florida is kind of like the same as USC. Not too long ago Florida won the national championship."

Winston is intrigued by the new interest, but he still has much more to learn about the schools and the coaches.

"USC, I have to learn more about them first," he said. "I'm going to look more into it. I know a lot about USC but I want to learn more about the coaches.

"I got pretty good interest in Florida. I know they have a pretty good class of corners coming in. I think of other schools higher than them though because I have met other schools coaches and USC and Florida are just now getting into the recruiting process with me."

Winston, whose father lives in Florida, has yet to receive an offer from either school but judging by the recent interest, one could be close. However, beyond recruiting, Winston will have plenty to keep him occupied on the football field.

After injuring his groin during track season, Winston is getting himself ready for Spring Practice, which is rapidly approaching.

"I do a lot of jogging to make sure my groin stays loose," he said. "I'm a little limited in practice on offense. My main concern right now is getting to groove with my football team. Over the summer, I plan on making it to the Arkansas Camp and a couple more I may make it to, but I want to make sure I'm healthy with those camps so that I can put on a good performance."

Winston has already proven a lot after securing a five-star ranking in the most recent Rivals100 update but he says he still has more to prove.

"It was a little surprising, I was very surprised," he said of the five-star ranking. "I thought it was an honor to be a five-star from Arkansas because I know Arkansas doesn't have too many five-stars. Hopefully there will be more.

"I feel like I got a whole lot to prove. I still got a long way to go. I got five stars and I gotta represent the state with pride and I gotta make my state proud so I feel like I need to keep proving myself."




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