June 13, 2008

Five-star decommits, names new leader

When Darius Winston committed to Arkansas back in February, he was well known within the Natural State as one of the best prospects in the area. Five months later how things have changed. Winston has since been named a five-star prospect, the second best cornerback in the nation and has picked up scholarship offers from around the country. Due to the national status of his recruitment, Arkansas fans knew that they would have to sweat out his commitment.

On Friday, Arkansas' fears were realized and Winston decommitted from the Razorbacks.

"I decided to decommit to Arkansas," Winston said Friday afternoon. "I've been thinking about it the past couple days. A couple of schools are on the rise. I like a couple of other schools better right now."

While Winston confirmed that he is still considering the Razorbacks, clearly a few other programs have made a stronger impression on him to this point.

"I'm considering them right now," he said. "They've kind of moved down. They're probably in my top six. I'm liking so many schools and I was committed so I felt like I needed to decommit."

So who is on top for the 6-foot-0 180-pounder?

"Michigan is at the top," he said firmly. "Michigan, Clemson, Texas and there's a couple of other schools but those are my top three right now."

Winston's change of heart has come following a spring evaluation period that saw a multitude of coaches come through in an attempt to recruit the physical cornerback. The relationships he has built with some of the assistants has been crucial in the new leaders for his services.

"Ever since Michigan started recruiting me a couple of months ago I've liked them," he said. "Arkansas has always been on top but I've been calling coach Hopson and I've been getting to like him. I really like their coaches a lot.

"I love Clemson's coaches. I like coach Vic Koenning. I met him during the evaluation period and I called him a couple times. At Texas I love the coaches too."

Winston has tentative plans to visit Texas this summer where he hopes to receive an official written offer. He also hopes to get to Michigan either in the summer or the fall for a visit.

Winston also expanded on the schools that he is interested in at this point.

"Michigan, Texas, Clemson, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida State and Miami, LSU too. LSU is in the top six," he said. "So now I'm down to a top ten schools. I want a top ten. I gave you eight, I'm still exercising the other two."

While recruiting is playing a big role in his summer, Winston's primary focus currently is getting a good score on his upcoming ACT test.


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