Top NJ DE Open Again

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Oakcrest (Mays Landing, N.J.) defensive end/outside linebacker recruit Dakota Walker has re-opened his recruiting process after earlier committing to Rutgers. Now, the 6-4, 225-pound prospect is considering official offers from Tennessee, UNC, Virginia Tech, Rutgers, Syracuse and Connecticut.

“My recruitment is still up in the air,” Walker said. “I’m keeping my options open. I’m wide open right now.”

While he considers himself wide open, Walker knows 3 schools he will take official visits to once his senior season is over.

“I plan on visiting Tennessee, Virginia Tech, UNC and somebody else that I don’t know yet,” Walker said. No dates have been set. “I might take all 5 visits, but if one school has it all I might decide earlier. I don’t know though. I do want to see everything I can before I decide.”

Walker says he has visited Rutgers enough to make a decision on the Scarlet Knights. They are still in the mix, but will have tough competition to beat.

Virginia Tech, led by primary recruiter Kevin Rogers, has caught Walker’s attention for several reasons.

“Obviously I like the coaches,” Walker said. “They are impressive to talk to. They’re cool. They send a good sum of kids to the NFL and they have a great program.”

According to Walker, Tech likes him as a defensive end. That appears to be for good reason, as the athletic defender says he “registered 110 tackles, 6 sacks, 1 batted ball and 3 forced fumbles” in just 4 games last season at defensive end. Walker only played in 4 games because he was a transfer.

This season, Walker plays defensive end and linebacker. He doesn’t have any statistics, but says “everything is going fine.”

“I play defensive end and Sam linebacker this year,” Walker said. “My strengths are my ability to hit and my pass rushing skills. Teams are recruiting me for both end and linebacker. I’ll play whichever. Maybe I wouldn’t mind linebacker so I can get some interceptions too.”

Important Factors in Decision

“I’m looking for a good coaching staff of course, a good environment, a good academic program that has my major and I’ll look at each team’s depth chart,” Walker said.

He wants to major in Communications or Business Management.