July 27, 2010

Birmingham defender narrows field to two

Georgia Tech and Michigan recently offered a scholarship to Kameron Wood.

Nothing against the Yellow Jackets or Wolverines, but the three-star defensive end/outside linebacker from Birmingham (John Carroll), Ala., hardly noticed.

Instead, Wood, who has 18 scholarship offers, has made a college decision, one that he plans to announce in two weeks.

"Ole Miss and Mississippi State are my two top ones, and those are the two I'm going to stay with and stick with," Wood said.

Wood, a 6-foot-4, 220-pounder, camped at both Ole Miss and Mississippi State this summer. He said Tuesday that both schools made very strong impressions during his visits.

"I've been to Mississippi State the last three summers for football camps and working out," Wood said. "My experience with Mississippi State is they're pretty good. They're amazing. I like the campus, the coaching staff. It's kind of a quiet campus, but I haven't been there for the fall.

"At Ole Miss, I fell in love with the campus as soon as I got there. The coaches warmed up to me and I really liked their facilities. I didn't get a chance to see the whole campus but I'm going to go back on Friday to see Ole Miss, visit the strength coach (Don Decker) and talk to (defensive line) Coach (Terry) Price and see what's up."

Of course, the Rebels' end-of-week sales pitch might not matter. After all, Wood insists his mind is made up. He said he'll announce his choice at John Carroll's Green and White Pep Rally on Aug. 13. The only hint: Education was the deciding factor. Wood plans to major in business management.

John Carroll begins practice Monday and opens the season on Aug. 27 at Jacksonville. Wood said he'll go to both Oxford and Starkville during the season to see both schools' game-day environments. However, he doesn't plan to continue his recruiting.

"What I've told myself is once I make my decision, I won't turn my back on it," Wood said. "I'll be humble and stick to my commitment."

Instead, Wood plans to focus on his senior season and improving his game in advance of his collegiate career.

"I plan on playing linebacker in college," Wood said. "I need to work on awareness a whole lot. I also need to work on my footwork. I need to work on swarming to the ball. That's my main focus."

Wood is ranked by Rivals.com as the No. 18 prospect in Alabama and the No. 20 weak-side defensive end in the country.

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