June 2, 2009

Confident Ambles talks Vols' camp

McDonough, Ga., wide receiver Markeith Ambles carries a lot of confidence and swagger when he steps onto the football field.

The sensational pass catcher from the Peach State has colleges from coast to coast hoping that he'll play his college football on their campus. He was in Knoxville on Tuesday to get to know the all-new University of Tennessee staff, headlined by first-year coach Lane Kiffin, a little bit better.

"Today was about getting to know the coaches better," Ambles said. "They have a good staff and they are going to get Tennessee back on the map. I think they are a program that's going to be fighting for a National Championship soon."

Ambles insists his recruitment remains totally wide open and still has too many schools of interest to name. He plans on narrowing it down to 15 schools by the end of the summer. Tennessee's biggest asset may be the chance to play early and often.

"They are going to give their freshmen a chance to play," Ambles said. "That's very appealing because I want to make an impact early."

Tall and slender, Ambles used to be tiny. He's put on quite a bit of weight since last summer and says that his goal is to be even bigger by this time next summer.

"I'm going to be working out hard this summer," said Ambles, who is up 15 pounds from this time last year. "I want to be a leader for my team and my school. I'm not thinking too much about the process right now. I'm just focused on going one day at a time.

"Just working out and drinking lots of muscle milk. I'm eating a lot, too (laughs). Lots of bread and peanut butter (more laughs)."

Ambles caught 53 passes last fall for 993 yards and 13 touchdowns on a team where he split the passes with Standford signee Jamal Patterson. He'll be the focal point this fall for not only his team, but the opposing team as well.

When he attends camps, he takes a hard look at his future position coach at each school.

"I'm looking at the wide receivers coach," Ambles said. "To see how they work with the players and how they coach. Some coaches can't develop their players and I want to continue to get better for the future."

Ambles says that he talks to every school at least once every couple of weeks. He has no definite plans for the rest of the summer.

Ambles has offers to play in both the U.S. Army All-American game and the Under Armour All-American game, but he's leaning toward playing in the Army game.

Rivals.com rates Ambles as a 4-star wide receiver and seventh-best receiver overall. He's also a member of the Rivals100.

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