Commentary

Top 5 reasons I chose my college

Updated: February 4, 2010, 4:03 PM ET
By Jon Mahoney | ESPN RISE

The nation's top recruits give us their Top 5 reasons for why they chose their school:

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George Washington (Philadelphia, Pa.)
No. 25 overall in the ESPNU 150
College: Florida

1. It was where I was most comfortable. There were a lot of places I've visited. When I got there, I should have stopped. It felt like home.

2. At first this wasn't a factor, but they're saying [Florida's class] is the No. 1 recruiting class in history. There is a lot of talent and we can compete for a national championship.

3. I can see myself growing there, adapting and potentially retiring there after I'm done with my career.

4. The coaching staff. My position coach, Dan McCarney, and I have a great relationship.

5. It could help me play my position with all the alumni who come back to talk [to the team].

RB LACHE SEASTRUNK
Temple (Temple, Texas)
No. 40 overall in the ESPNU 150
College: Oregon

1. [Oregon coach] Chip Kelly. He's an awesome guy. He's down to earth and does what he says he does.

2. Chip Kelly. He's the whole reason I'm coming to Oregon.

3. The offense. We ran the same exact offense at Temple. We just did it under center. I know I'm going to make a great contribution as a freshman.

4. The gear, the jerseys, the cleats -- all that awesome stuff.

5. The overall environment and people. It's peaceful. It's an at-home feeling. When I visited, I just went outside and walked around. Nobody bothered me.

RB MACK BROWN
Martin Luther King Jr. (Lithonia, Ga.)
No. 34 overall in the ESPNU 150
College: Florida

1. God. I prayed to God about it and He sent me that way. He led me in that direction.

2. The relationships. I had a really good relationship with my recruiter and coach [Urban] Meyer. They kept it real since Day 1. I feel like Coach Meyer is my family away from home. When I found out he might be leaving, I called him an hour later. He called me back the next day and just said he was feeling sick. But a week later, he said he was coming back.

3. Their offense. They are going to use the running backs a lot more next year. The NFL is changing right now, so the more you can do as a running back, the more money you can make. They said I could do a couple Wildcat plays as a freshman. They're also going to let me get the ball behind the line and run between the tackles.

4. Tradition. I grew up a Gator fan. My dad, aunts and everybody liked them. My favorite former Gator was Emmitt Smith; that's how I became a Dallas Cowboys fan. I guess I was just born to be a Gator.

5. Atmosphere. It was real crazy when I went there for the Tennessee game. The crowd and the vibe, it made my body shiver. We get like 9,000 fans at our games at MLK. They get like 100,000. It was real loud in there. You couldn't even hear yourself talk.

[+] EnlargeTom Hauck
Tom Hauck for ESPN.comGatorade National Player of the Year Malcolm Jones justifies choosing UCLA over dozens of other suitors.

RB/LB MALCOLM JONES
Oaks Christian (Westlake Village, Calif.)
Gatorade National Football Player of the Year
College: UCLA

1. The main reason is because you can get the best of both worlds both athletically and academically. I wanted to have a pretty good backup plan in case football didn't work out.

2. Location. Southern California is a really good place to live. I can't imagine going someplace else.

3. The campus and the whole school in general. It's really nice. It's not too big. Everything is close.

4. How the football team is up-and-coming and creeping its way back up the Pac-10. I wanted to be a part of a team that isn't the best right now but will be.

5. The whole team in general. I like how all the coaches are down to earth. The players are really cool and real team players.

WR KYLE PRATER
Proviso West (Hillside, Ill.)
No. 45 overall in the ESPNU 150
College: USC (already enrolled)

1. The environment of the school. When I came out here to visit, I knew where my heart was at.

2. The players. I knew I could come out here and get a shot at competing.

3. The academics. I want to major in communications and there's a background in media out here.

4. The lifestyle away from football. I've got a nice social life out here.

5. Tradition. I just like how they've always been there. It shows you can't go wrong if you come out here.

QB CONNOR WOOD
Second Baptist (Houston, Texas)
No. 15 QB
College: Texas (already enrolled)

1. Probably the best one is that it's a comfortable, family atmosphere.

2. I like the proximity to Houston, where I'm from. I can go home whenever I want to. There are a lot of advantages to living close. Family can come to you and friends can come to you.

3. I really enjoyed the coaches. The whole coaching staff is great, offensively and defensively.

4. The amount of friends I have here. I have a good amount of people who came from my high school. I'm not going to California or somewhere else where I wouldn't know anybody.

5. Playing on such a big stage. Texas football is so huge in the state. It's the center point of college football.

Jon Mahoney is a football and baseball editor for ESPNHS. Email him at jon.mahoney@espn.com.