Chat with Tom Lemming
Moderator (2:53 PM)
We're about ready to get rolling. Allen Smith will be joining us at 3 ET for a few minutes. Then Tom will be around for the remainder of the hour.
Allen Smith (2:58 PM)
I'm ready for your questions.
Actually this question is for Allen...Allen, how important was it for you to join a team that will compete for a national championship?
Allen Smith (2:59 PM)
It was very important because I felt that I couldn't do anything less than compete for a national championship. I'm a competitor and that's what I'm interested in.
Brian in Dayton, OH
Allen, what schools are you down to?
Allen Smith (3:00 PM)
My final list includes ASU, Notre Dame, Stanford and UCLA.
Rastaman, Berkeley, CA
Allen--How did you weigh the various factors; getting along with your prospective teammates, academics, campus life, etc. Did diversity in the student body play a part in your decision?
Allen Smith (3:02 PM)
The main element in my decision making was the way I fit in with the players. Strong team unity and a collective attitude will win the national championship. Players were more important than the weight room or any of those factors.
allen, how important is academics to you and your family?
Allen Smith (3:04 PM)
Academics is very important. I have one brother who graduated from Dartmouth, another attends UVa. I wanted to attend a school that would honor that academic code.
Bob Gulfport, MS
Allen what school did you pick
Moderator (3:09 PM)
Slight glitch here. Allen will be right back with his answer. Good drama though, huh?
Allen Smith (3:14 PM)
I'd like to thank my mother, my brothers and my father for all their help. I'd also like to thank the players in the state of Arizona for helping me get better. This was not an easy decision. It took a lot of thought. I'd also like to thank all the schools that recruited me.
Allen Smith (3:15 PM)
As I said earlier, it came down to Arizona State, UCLA, Notre Dame and Stanford. All of the schools had something terrific to offer.
Allen Smith (3:16 PM)
I love Stanford as an academic institution and realized they want to win on the field as well. In the end, Stanford is my school of choice.
Allen Smith (3:17 PM)
I did not choose to attend purely on academics. It's a place I think I can thrive. I plan on playing on a national championship team. I think I can do this at Stanford.
Moderator (3:18 PM)
Tom will be right with us.
Any chance AD decommits from OU? I've been hearing rumors about him wavering on his commitment. Any thoughts on this?
Tom Lemming (3:21 PM)
Adrian Peterson did take an unoffical trip to Texas A&M last week and might head down to Austin this week. Although, he's told OU people he is solid for OU and will sign with them on Feb. 4.
Wade (Columbus, OH)
What is the latest you've heard on Cameron Colvin?
Tom Lemming (3:23 PM)
The latest is he had silently committed to USC two weeks ago, but has backed off that a bit. He's flirting with Oregon ever since. If Dwayne Jarrett also ends up at USC, Cameron might be headed to Oregon or Michigan instead.
Andy from The Happy Valley
What's the deal with Greg Harrison not being on your lineman top 25 rankings. On the other recruiting sites he is a top 10 lineman????!!!!
Tom Lemming (3:26 PM)
I don't look at other sites when I evaluate players. I did go see Greg and have watched him on film. I gave him four stars and consider him to be a good offensive lineman. He just fell short of the top 25.
Tom, What is your gut feeling on where Brandon Miller will commit? And where would you rank UGA's class if we get him.
Tom Lemming (3:27 PM)
My gut feeling tells me it's a tossup between FSU and Georgia. He lives closer to Tallahassee than Athens. He's been tough to peg all year.
A.J. (Ann Arbor)
Who is the most underrated prospect that is on the rise coming near signing day?
Tom Lemming (3:30 PM)
WR Chris Vaughn from St. Thomas More in Oakdale, Conn. The 6-4, 208-pound receiver has been timed in a 4.37 40 and averaged 29 yards per catch. Hidden away in a corner of Connecticut, not a lot of coaches had discovered him. Once his senior tape got out USC, Miami, ND and UCLA got involved. Boston College and Iowa were on him early. Now it is down to Iowa, UCLA or Notre Dame. He might decide by Monday.
James (Gaithersburg, MD)
How does Derrick Harvey compare to another great DE from the state of MD, Victor Abiamiri?
Tom Lemming (3:32 PM)
They both have explosive moves and speed, but Victor is a little stronger. Both should become All-Americans in college. I think Harvey will end up at Maryland over Tennessee, Miami and Florida.
Tom, do you think Callahan has a chance with Rocky Hinds this weekend in Lincoln?
Tom Lemming (3:33 PM)
As long as Hinds makes the visit, there is a chance. But he will more than likely sign with USC next Wednesday.
Mike (Ann Arbor)
Hey Tom, Whats up with Eugene Germany..USC or Michigan?
Tom Lemming (3:34 PM)
Eugene was one of the supposed silent committers to USC, but has since stated that Michigan has pulled even. However, this could be a ploy to create interest for his Signing Day announcement.
What are the chances ofMiami Rhyan Anderson and Willie Williams?
Tom Lemming (3:36 PM)
Right now the chances are good. Anderson has not dropped anyone yet -- Miami, Florida, Ohio State, OU and USC. Williams is visiting Florida today and will decide on Feb. 4 between FSU, Miami and Florida. The 'Canes have a slight lead for Willie.
Hey Tom.....where is Franklin Okam going?
Tom Lemming (3:38 PM)
If you could find out, let me know. It's still 50/50 between Texas and Oklahoma.
Who has the better class this year....Buckeyes or Wolverines?
Tom Lemming (3:39 PM)
Wolverines right now -- they are No. 3. The Buckeyes are No. 4 in the country but don't have a very good chance at catching Michigan.
Steve (Baton Rouge)
Tom, has Lavelle Hawkins silently commited to LSU?
Tom Lemming (3:40 PM)
That's the rumor, but I have not been able to confirm it.
J.C. (Gainesville, Fl)
Is Markus Manson likely to decommit from Florida to stay home in Tuscaloosa?
Tom Lemming (3:43 PM)
Markus has been very tough to pin down. He has solidified his commitment to the Gators with the Florida schools, but has been open to change with the media in Alabama. I think their could be a switch at the last minute. Markus could join his good friend Cody Davis in Tuscaloosa.
Tom, any more news on cornelius Ingram and if he is leading toward USF or UF??
Tom Lemming (3:44 PM)
I've been doing interviews with some of the press in South Florida and their indication is that he his very interested in South Florida and might end up there.
Jack (Omaha, NB)
Don't you think gurus like yourself, and how you attempt sway candidates with you comments to schools is somewhat irresponsible? Since it appears you do this to help out schools in your good favor, couldn?t this be seen as a violation with the NCAA? After all I am sure some of these schools boosters pay for your online service.
Tom Lemming (3:48 PM)
Jack, You are uninformed about this -- about what my job is. My comments are to entertain recruiting fans and to tell the truth. I never tell kids to go to any particular school -- never have, never will. Sometimes telling the truth can upset fans. I do not take money from school's boosters or any schools. My magazine is available to anyone.
William in Lousiville
Word has it that Joe Casey decommitted from Kentucky to Arkansas, (pending test scores), is that true?
Tom Lemming (3:50 PM)
Yes, it appears to be that way. Joe seems to be struggling in school and chances are he will wind up in a junior college next fall. If he does qualify, he will be an instant impact player for Arkansas.
Nate (Athens, Ga)
What's the word on Michael Brown? Georgia or Florida?
Tom Lemming (3:52 PM)
Since he is still committed to Georgia, my guess is he will remain a Bulldog.
How about a Tennessee question? Where do you see us finishing and what is our chances with Roland Martin and Marque Hall?Thanks
Tom Lemming (3:55 PM)
Roland Martin is visitin NC State this weekend. Before he left today, he mentioned that Tennessee and Michigan State are in a dead heat. OU is still a possibility. Hall is still between UNC, NC State, Tennessee and South Carolina. The Vols are No. 10 right now. So the last few days will be important. UT will finish between No. 8 and No. 12.
Will UCLA salvage anything this year? Please answer something about the Bruins.
Tom Lemming (3:58 PM)
UCLA'a class is not that bad. They are still in on a couple of players, but I do think improvement will come at home. The Pac-10 needs UCLA to be successful recruiting L.A. just to keep USC from running away with things -- which they have done the last two years. Right now, UCLA would be between No. 30 and No. 40.
Jake - Appleton Wisc.
Tom Lemming (3:59 PM)
This one is too close to call. Both ND and FSU had coaches in his house last night. His mom did say one school has taken the lead, but she would not say which one.
Bryan (Memphis, TN)
Could you answer an Ole Miss question for me? What do you think about Rory Johnson committing to the Rebels, and this years recruiting class?
Tom Lemming (4:03 PM)
Rory Johnson, in my opinion, is one of the premier LBs in the country. He runs like a back and hits like a freight train. LSU, Mississippi State, Nebraska and Ole Miss are the leaders. The Rebels have come on strong late this year with the commits up of Gary Pack and Lavarus Giles. They are putting together a very athletic class.
Slade (Raleigh, NC)
How is NC State finishing? and What's the news on Demarrio Pressley?
Tom Lemming (4:05 PM)
NC State is finishing well. No new news on Demorrio. It's still NC State, UNC and FSU.
How is Kansas doing? I keep hearing their class is the best in a long time.
Tom Lemming (4:06 PM)
When compared with past KU classes, it is a good one. The Jayhawks will probably have a top 40 class.
Erich (Glen Ridge, NJ)
Tom, love your work. What's the word on Jae Thaxton? Seems like FSU has a slight lead over Georgia and LSU.
Tom Lemming (4:08 PM)
Jae is a very academic-minded ballplayer. He has never indicated a leader but it looks like it will come down to Georgia and Florida State.
Tom Lemming (4:08 PM)
Thanks for all the questions. I'll be back on Monday and Wednesday.