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June 1, 2006
Two very highly sought-after prospects are making their announcements as to where they'll be heading to college Friday.
Ramsey (N.J.) Don Bosco Prep's heralded defensive end Justin Trattou and Anderson (S.C.) T.L. Hanna star running back Brian Maddox will let everyone know their college choices Friday. Maddox will announce his decision at 6 p.m. EST at his high school. Trattou will make his pick at 3:30 p.m. EST on cable television.
Maddox said Thursday that he has his list narrowed down to five teams ? South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia Tech, Florida and Florida State. The 6-foot, 215-pounder says that all five are even leading up to his announcement.
Both Carolina schools definitely have been under consideration for some time with the talented runner.
"I've been to North Carolina once before, but this time I got to meet a lot more of the coaches and people around the program," Maddox said about his recent trip to UNC. "They felt like I could play right away.
"Coach Robert Gillespie (South Carolina) would be my position coach there and he's a great person that I know I can trust. I've built a great relationship with him. Also, it's close to home and they have great in-state fan support."
Virginia Tech was another recent visit for Gillespie and he said that he "liked it a lot."
"They told me they really need running backs, and that they thought I could play early if I came there," Maddox said.
The Florida schools are also schools that the highly touted running back has been looking at seriously and has a lot of interest in.
"Both of them have great facilities and they both play big-time football," Maddox said. "I like the running back coaches at both places. They've both been great to me during this process."
Maddox rushed for 1,353 yards and 26 touchdowns as a junior. On defense, he picked up two interceptions while totaling 36 tackles.
New Jersey defensive lineman Trattou also has things somewhat narrowed down going into his decision on Friday. The top three teams left on the board appear to be Penn State, Ohio State, and Notre Dame.
While Trattou feels that all three schools offer great education and competition for national championships, he likes each of them for different reasons.
The Irish have not only recruited great players over the last few years, but Trattou has taken notice of the ones they've picked up from his home state.
"It's always good when a school is getting great players," Trattou said. "It builds a basis for my class. It's a big-time place. I talked to all of the coaches. I really think highly of all of them."
Penn State is a team that Trattou also visited for a junior day. There he got to see what kind of team he possibly could be playing with and came away impressed with what he saw.
"I was able to attend a practice scrimmage where the offense went against the defense," Trattou said. "It was pretty cool. They look like they have a real tough team and it seemed like all of the guys were having a lot of fun out there."
Ohio State is a team that has been less talked about by Trattou, but it appears they have set themselves in the top group along with his other two favorites. His only visit there was several years ago for a basketball tournament. Apparently that trip has kept the Buckeyes in the race.
Trattou registered 96 tackles and 11 sacks as a junior. That earned him first-team all-county, all-league, and all-state honors as a junior.
Stay tuned to Rivals.com for the latest on these two top players and their commitments Friday.