March 2, 2011

McNamara remains open

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As one of the most highly recruited tight ends in the nation for the class of 2012, the offers are rolling in for San Diego (Calif.) Westview product Taylor McNamara. The 6-foot-5, 235-pound prospect holds offers from programs from around the Country and is one of the top out-of-state targets on Ohio State's radar.

"I'm up to like 17 offers," McNamara explained. "I'm kind of open to anything right now. I haven't narrowed anything down at all and I'm still wide open with the recruiting process."

After taking a pair of tight ends in the class of 2011, the position isn't one of dire need for the Buckeyes but McNamara is certainly at or near the top of the board.

"I talked to coach (John) Peterson for the first time in a while a few weeks ago," McNamara explained. "It went well. We just talked things over and caught up."

Ohio State is also high on McNamara's list, however some of the new NCAA rules have caused a lot of confusion as to what exactly constitutes a verbal offer.

"They're still right there," McNamara said. "I thought I had an offer and I was pretty much ready to commit and I told them that and they basically said that 'we want you to wait'. They like weren't ready for it and it frustrated me in a way I guess because I was ready to commit but it is what it is. They just said that they had a little more evaluating to do. It was kind of a heartbreaker because I really thought I had an offer."

Even with the confusion aside, McNamara is still very open to the idea of considering Ohio State, especially when it comes time to work out which schools he will officially visit.

"Yes, definitely," McNamara said, when asked if Ohio State could get an official visit. "If they make it clear that I have an opportunity to come there then I would definitely (look at them). I'm definitely going to take them into consideration; I loved what I saw up there (at camp last June)."

This past weekend McNamara took an unofficial visit to Stanford, another program that is high on his list, and came away impressed with what he saw.

"It was awesome," he said. "I talked to a lot of the coaches and met a lot of great people. Condoleezza Rice was up there and she gave a lecture which was pretty cool. There's some great people up there; professors, coaches and all of the above."

While the majority of West coast prospects typically stay close to home, McNamara is open to schools from all parts of the Country and is simply looking for the best fit, regardless of geographic location.

"Location is not a factor in any way," he explained. "I've talked to my parents about it and it's not a factor. I want to go and find the best place for me."

One of the most important factors to McNamara will be how each school's coaching staff approaches the tight end position.

"I'm looking for an offense that uses the tight end well," he said. "It doesn't mean that they have to throw to the tight end every play or anything like that but it's just a matter of them knowing how to use them and knowing how to get them open when they do throw to them. I'm not looking for an offense that absolutely highlights the tight end I'm just looking at how they use them."

After checking out Stanford, McNamara will also be heading to a pair of instate schools over the next month.

"I've got a junior day to USC this weekend and I think I'm going on a trip up to Cal on April 1st," McNamara said.


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