October 31, 2011

Eligwe an exception to norm

Most elite recruits have the opportunity to play on great teams that are perennial playoff contenders.

Stone Mountain two-way standout Ukeme Eligwe is an exception to that norm. With a little help from other schools in the region, Eligwe's Pirates will have a chance to make the playoffs for the first time in his high school career.

"We're doing great. We are 6-2 right now and we are looking forward to winning our next two games. We need Columbia to beat Woodward, and we'll be in the playoffs for the first time since the early 2000's," said Eligwe.

Eligwe, the No. 3 ranked prospect UGASports' Georgia top 40, has flown up the rankings since the spring, and is turning heads on both sides of the ball for the Pirates.

"I really don't know much about my stats this year, but I think I have like 11 or 12 touchdowns," he said. "I also have several tackles for a loss, some sacks, and a couple of interceptions."

Eligwe's future at the next level is at linebacker, and he is currently playing in a 3-4 system where opposing coaches are having fits with his ability to make plays.

The Florida State commitment is getting plenty of attention this year, but much of that attention has come because of his mental growth as a player.

"I'm reading plays so much better. Last year I was just running around to the ball and using my athletic ability," he said. "This year I can say that I'm not over pursuing like I used to and I'm watching a lot of film and reading plays better."

The game of football is a challenging game and Eligwe recognizes the challenges. He also welcomes those challenges and understands that the game and his coaches can provide him with life lessons.

"I love a coach that is going to get after me and tell me I'm better than what I am showing. If I play a perfectly, I want him to tell me that I can do it better because that is what will make me better as a person. That's what I want out of it," said Eligwe. "That's the kind of coach I want at the next level."

While the peach state prospect is currently committed to FSU, he has made it known that he plans to visit Florida and Georgia before signing day.

He says that he still hears from Georgia recruiting coordinator Rodney Garner on a weekly basis, but he also hears from his recruiter from Florida State, Dameyune Craig.

"A typical week for me is that I will hear from Florida State and Coach Craig, and then Georgia and I will contact each other as well. I will also hear from Florida too," he said.

Florida State is still Eligwe's school of choice for right now, and he maintains that he is still solid, but he also understands the nuances of the recruiting process. He knows the magnitude of this decision.

"Florida State knows that I'm still committed, but this is the biggest decision of my life so I'm going to take official visits to other schools," he said. I don't want to be that kid that doesn't take his official visits so I'm going to make sure I don't have any doubts."

Eligwe will be visiting Florida on November 19 for the Furman game, and he plans on visiting Georgia before the end of the season as well. He will take is official to FSU sometime during basketball season.

When asked if a school could change his mind, Rivals100 recruit decided to keep things close to the vest.

"No Comment," he said. "Just no comment."

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