May 19, 2009

Rebels making push on Irish for Apopka cornerback

Lo Wood had expected to see Ole Miss defensive line coach Terry Price today.

Weather, however, interrupted Wood's spring practice, so Price _ and, if recent days are any indication in Pahokee, Fla., _ and several other college coaches pushed back their planned trips until Wednesday.

With Wood, a three-star cornerback, a lot of schools are wasting their time. Ole Miss, however, appears to be in the mix, albeit trailing Notre Dame.

Wood, a 5-foot-10, 160-pound cornerback with 4.58-second speed in the 40-yard dash, had a long talk recently with Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt. That conversation, Wood said Monday night, helped the Rebels make a strong push for the No. 2 spot in the race to land his commitment this summer.

"Really I'm trying to wait until I see (Ole Miss)," Wood said. "Coach Nutt seems like a pretty cool person. He's all hype and I like that in a coach. He just talked about how excited he was about getting me on campus. He was talking about how he was going to get me."

One of the strong selling points for Ole Miss is the coziness of the Oxford, Miss., community and the relative smallness of the UM campus.

"The class sizes won't be as big (as at some other schools recruiting him)," Wood said. "In small classes, you learn more."

Wood, who plans to major in business or accounting, took a spring trip to Notre Dame and fell in love. The Irish are clearly the team to beat.

"It's a small school," Wood said. "I like small schools. And the coaches there are really cool dudes."

Wood said he's still planning to make an early commitment, but he admitted that the prospect of deciding "gets harder and harder as I go."

Wood has offers from Notre Dame, Ole Miss, Duke, Georgia Tech, Michigan, Louisville, North Carolina State, Virginia, Stanford and others.

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