August 20, 2008

Florida DE waiting on Rebel offer

Three-star defensive end prospect Julius Forte from Saint Peterburg (Boca Ciega High School), Fla. is up to 13 offers, but one school he is very interested in is yet to offer.

"I'm still interested in Ole Miss," Forte said on Tuesday evening. "I'm still getting mail from them. I know that they can't call me and I haven't called them. I expect they'll be calling me once coaches can start to call."

Forte's interest in Ole Miss was peaked when Rebel recruiting coordinator Chris Vaughn visited his high school during the spring evaluation period.

"Coach Vaughn is really a great guy, we really hit if off right away," Forte said. "He's telling me that the coaches will be down this fall for one of my games and that they are still looking at me."

While Forte, a 6-foot-2, 226 pound prospect with 4.6 speed , has offers from Kentucky, Cincinnati, Louisville, Indiana, Iowa, Iowa State, North Carolina, N.C. State, Purdue, South Florida, Tulane, Florida International and Troy, he has only the one SEC offer and would like to pick up another - from Ole Miss.

"Any time you get a Division I scholarship offer, that's big, because it means a chance at a free education," Forte said. "Getting one from an SEC team is special. The SEC is a great conference and getting a second offer (from Ole Miss) would be big."

Forte calls his recruitment "pretty much at a stand still" and says he's not hearing much from any schools as teams have shifted focus from camps and recruiting to preparation for the coming season, and he is preparing for his upcoming senior season.

Forte ended up camping only at South Florida and FIU after having plans for several camp appearances.

"I wanted to go to several camps, including the one at Ole Miss," he said. "But when I got to checking the price of airline tickets, they were just so high that I couldn't do it."

Next up for Forte is determining where he'll take his five official visits.

He recently named USF, Kentucky, Louisville, North Carolina and N.C. State as his top five; however said that could change over the season.

"If Ole Miss offered, that would be a consideration," Forte said about determining his five official visits. "I don't think I could give them a definite yes or no about an official visit because they offered, but it would be something to think about."

Forte recorded 50 tackles and 11 sacks last year at Boca Ciega and is currently rated the No. 43 weakside defensive end in the nation by Forte also was credited with four forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, including one for a touchdown, and a blocked field goal last season.

A connection Forte does have with Ole Miss is a relationship with Rebel defensive tackle Lawon Scott.

"I'm pretty cool with that guy," he said in a previous interview. "Whenever he comes back, I talk to him about the school and he tells me it's good. Ole Miss is on the upside."

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