Wake Forest will host some of the top 2013 gridiron talents for its Junior Day Saturday, Feb. 25.
This event is a special occasion for Jim Grobe, his staff and current players to woo recruits and leave lasting impressions about what it means to be a Demon Deacon and the opportunities an education from Wake has to offer.
Here is a tentative list of prospects expected to attend to Wake Forest's Junior Day:
--- Brenden Alford, Greenville (SC) Wade Hampton, Offensive Tackle, 6-foot-4 and 320 pounds.
Wake Forest has offered Alford, while Clemson, NC State and South Carolina have shown interest.
"I'm really looking forward to their Junior Day, because I haven't gotten to look at any schools yet," Alford said in a prior interview with Deacons Illustrated. "I [want] to learn about how they function and about their atmosphere, and what the personality of the school is."
Last December he transferred to Wade Hampton in Greenville, SC after helping Dillon (SC) advance to the fourth round of
the state playoffs and a 12-1 record.
--- John Brown, Durham (NC) Jordan, Running Back, 5-foot-11 and 180 pounds.
Duke, North Carolina and Wake Forest are showing interest in Brown.
"I always grew up a Tar Heel fan, but right now as a school I wouldn't say I have specific favorite," Brown said.
Brown participated in the U.S. Army National Combine.
Jordan struggled with youth and inexperience this season, finishing with a 3-8 record. Brown mustered a gritty 860 yards on the ground with a young offensive line.
--- Corey Cooper, Raleigh (NC) Millbrook, Wide Receiver, 6-foot-1 and 192 pounds.
He claims scholarship offers from Illinois, Iowa State, Kentucky, North Carolina, NC State, Oklahoma State and Tulsa. Maryland, Tennessee and Wake Forest are showing interest in Cooper.
Millbrook made a first round appearance in the state playoffs, and finished with 6-8 record.
--- Anthony Covington, Charlotte (NC) Mallard Creek, Cornerback, 5-foot-11 and 193 pounds.
He claims more than eight scholarship offers, including one from Wake Forest.
"Wake Forest and Chapel Hill (UNC) have stood out the most," Covington said in a prior interview with Tar Heel Illustrated. "I've been to NC State, too. I liked it there and I'm still looking at them. But as far as the schools I've seen I think Wake Forest and UNC have shown me the most."
"[Wake Forest is a] great school," Covington said in a prior interview with Deacons Illustrated. "Academically it's top notch. A degree from Wake stands alone by itself. Academically is the best thing for me as far as picking a school first and foremostwise. I think that definitely that really catches my eye up [and] peaks my interest. Athletically it's still playing great competition, great D-I schools, and a little bit more of a smaller university. It will allow me to continue to focus on academics as well as working hard with the coaches and with the team in order to get better. I think definitely it's a school that's in the running."
Covington intercepted five passes to help Mallard Creek advance to the fourth round of the state playoffs and finish with a 13-1 record.
--- Grant Dawson, Pfafftown (NC) Reagan, Linebacker.
He recorded 158 tackles, six tackles for loss, nine sacks, two forced fumbles and two interceptions, including one that he returned for a touchdown as Reagan stumbled to 3-8 finish.
--- Natron Gidney, Shelby (NC) Crest, Tight End.
Crest made a state championship, and finished with a 12-4 record.
--- Marquez Grayson, Lexington (NC) Lexington, Running Back, 6-foot-2 and 200 pounds.
In no specific order Grayson's top schools are Clemson, Duke, East Carolina, NC State, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest.
"I talk to them [Demon Deacons] I'd say at least two times a month," Grayson said in a prior interview with Deacons Illustrated. "He [Lonnie Galloway] wants to get me up there and sit down and talk about a few things. [He] wants to show me around the campus, just the usual."
Grayson was in attendance for Wake Forest's 34-27 win over NC State last season, and went to watch the Deacs as a ninth grader.
"It wasn't a visit," Grayson said in a prior interview with Deacons Illustrated. "I just went as an ordinary person. It was a pretty good experience. The coaches seemed pretty intense."
Despite having Grayson in its backfield Lexington struggled to a 4-7 record, but did make a first round appearance in the state playoffs.
Deacons Illustrated was present for his three-touchdown performance in Lexington's 44-22 loss to Central Davidson.
--- D.J. Jackson, Clemmons (NC) West Forsyth.
West Forsyth failed to make the playoffs with a 4-6 resume.
--- Jorian Jordan, Charlotte (NC) Mallard Creek, Wide Receiver, 6-foot-1 and 175 pounds.
He participated in the U.S. Army National Combine last month.
Towson is the only school to offer, but he is receiving interest from a number of schools. Jordan told Rivals.com recruiting analyst Mike Farrell he may camp at North Carolina, Notre Dame, Tennessee and South Carolina this summer.
"I've been talking to North Carolina a lot because they really need wide receivers in their new offense," Jordan said in a prior interview with Farrell." UNC is top school right now because they are really looking for wide receivers and my former teammate, quarterback Marquise Williams, is doing well there. I think the offense is going to be a lot better this year and I look forward to seeing him in the offense."
Jordan helped Mallard Creek advance to the fourth round of the state playoffs to finish with a 13-1 record.
--- Tevin Lawshe, Charlotte (NC) Mallard Creek, Offensive Guard, 6-foot-4 and 273 pounds.
East Carolina is the only school that has offered Lawshe a scholarship.
"I'm also hearing from Wake Forest, Duke and Tennessee," Lawshe said in a prior interview with Rivals.com recruiting analyst Keith Niebuhr. "I'm getting high interest from Auburn and I'm talking to South Carolina, too. And I visited North Carolina yesterday. They told me some stuff up there. They told me they enjoyed my film and said I was a good technician. They said all I had to do was come up for camp and prove I could be a center. They're recruiting me as a center/guard."
Lawshe participated in the U.S Army National Combine.
The invitation to Wake's Junior Day informed Lawshe that offensive coordinator and fullbacks and tight ends coach Steed Lobotzke and the rest of the coaching staff are looking forward to his visit, so that he can get a feel for the school.
He attended Wake Forest's football camp last summer, where he received special tutelage from Lobotzke. That extra work with Lobotzke helped Lawshe improve as a pass-blocker. Mallard Creek advanced to the semifinal round of the state playoffs and finished with a 13-1 record.
--- T.J. Logan, Greensboro (NC) Northern Guilford, Running Back, 5-foot-9 and 175 pounds.
Rivals.com rates Logan as a four-star recruit.
He claims offers from Auburn, Clemson, NC State, Ohio State, South Carolina and Tennessee and is receiving interest from Wake Forest.
Logan carried 293 times for 2,468 yards and 38 touchdowns, recorded 49 tackles and intercepted three passes to lead Northern Guilford 14-1 campaign and state championship crown.
--- David Mayaka, Cary (NC) Panther Creek, Running Back, 6-foot-1 and 180 pounds.
He rushed 270 times for 1,492 yards and 17 touchdowns to help lead Panther Creek to a state playoff appearance and an 8-4 record.
--- Jalen McDaniel, Fayetteville (NC) Jack Britt, Wide Receiver, 6-foot-2 and 202 pounds.
He claims offers from East Carolina, NC State and Wake Forest, while many other schools have displayed interest.
"I've been waiting on this for a long time, waiting for my recruitment to pick up," McDaniel said in a prior with The Wolfpacker. "It's been amazing. It's been fun. I have coaches calling and coming in to see me."
He played a major part in Jack Britt's run to the fourth round of the state playoffs and 11-3 finish by catching 33 passes for 529 yards and three touchdowns.
--- Parker McLeod, Marietta (GA) Walton, Quarterback, 6-foot-2 and 189 pounds.
The pro-style quarterback claims offers from Boston College, Louisville and Oklahoma State, while many schools including Wake Forest have shown interest in him.
Walton made it to the state championship, finishing with a 14-1 record.
--- Carlis Parker, Statesville (NC) Statesville, Quarterback, 6-foot-3 and 187 pounds.
The dual-threat quarterback missed his entire junior season with a torn LCL (Lateral Collateral Ligament). Parker is running, and is set to be cleared to leg-related weightlifting workouts next month.
Parker, who grew up cheering for Clemson, has received interest from the Tigers, Duke, East Carolina, Florida, LSU, NC State, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest.
"I haven't been on campus or anything like that," Parker said in a prior interview with Deacons Illustrated. "I don't know much about Wake. That's why I'm going, so I can meet some of their coaches and get a feel for the school."
Parker said he will go to one of Wake Forest's spring practices.
As a sophomore in 2010 he passed for 1,792 yards and 11 touchdowns, and rushed for 1,180 yards and 13 touchdowns.
--- Chris Register, Greensboro (NC) Dudley.
Dudley advanced to the second round of the state playoffs finished with a 6-6 record.
--- Austin Richardson, Kernersville (NC) East Forsyth, Tight End, 6-foot-3 and 220 pounds.
Wake Forest is showing interest in him.
Richardson caught five passes for 74 yards to help East Forsyth to a first round playoff appearance and a 9-3 record.
--- Zach Riggs, Greer (SC) Mann, Tight End, 6-foot-5 and 245 pounds.
"I think NC State is a leader right now, but they [Wake Forest] are probably second or third," Riggs said in a prior interview with Deacons Illustrated. "Wake Forest just invited me to their Junior Day, and I've been getting some e-mails from NC State and Clemson has called a couple of times, so it has picked up pretty much in this last week. I've gotten a couple of letters from Penn State, Vanderbilt, but nothing major just questionnaires."
"I ran some slot this year, but I mainly am more of a blocker," Riggs said in a prior interview with Deacons Illustrated. "I'm kind of a big body. I love catching the ball, but I'll play wherever I need to. I block most of the time."
He caught 10 passes for 280 yards and two touchdowns as an integral part to Mann's run to the playoffs and 7-4 finish. Riggs said he will also play defensive end next season.
--- Drew Rogers, Greensboro (NC) Page.
Page went 15-0 to win the state championship.
--- LaChaston Smith, Statesville (NC) South Iredell, Outside Linebacker, 6-feet and 215 pounds.
He claims five offers, including one from Wake Forest.
"We [he and Lonnie Galloway talk on Facebook," Smith said in a prior interview with Deacons Illustrated. "I saw him three times. On the third day he gave me an offer. I just want to see where they're [Wake Forest] at with me and what position they want me to play at. A lot of schools have been talking about moving me back to safety."
In 10 games Smith recorded 82 tackles, 24 tackles for loss, five forced fumbles, five sacks, two interceptions that were returned for touchdowns, and four pass breakups.
Smith missed the final four games of the season due to injury.
South Iredell advanced to the third round of the state playoffs to finish with a 13-1 record.
--- Mike Sutton, Cary (NC) Panther Creek, Offensive Guard, 6-foot-3 and 300 pounds.
"I've visited Duke, Wake Forest, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, NC State, Virginia Tech, East Carolina, Arizona State and Michigan already," Sutton said in a prior interview with Hokie Haven. "I went to a lot of games and went to a lot of camps."
"I really liked Georgia Tech, Duke and Wake Forest," Sutton said in a prior interview with Hokie Haven. "They're really like a family at those schools and I liked the environment. They are really good academically too. I have a 3.82 GPA, so I really want to go to a school and get a degree out of it."
I played an integral role in helping Panther Creek make a state playoff appearance and finish with an 8-4 record.
--- Ryan Switzer, Charleston (WV) George Washington, Athlete, 5-foot-10 and 170 pounds.
He has 13 scholarship offers, including one from Wake Forest, and has already made numerous trips to Winston-Salem.
Switzer accumulated 3,000 all-purpose yards and scored 45 touchdowns, and also intercepted five passes as a defensive back to help lead George Washington to a state playoff appearance and a 13-1 record.
--- Brian Walker, Charlotte (NC) Mallard Creek, Cornerback, 5-foot-11 and 170 pounds.
Rivals.com rates Walker as a four-star recruit and the nation's No. 148 overall prospect.
NC State and North Carolina lead in the Walker sweepstakes, while Clemson, South Carolina, Tennessee and Wake Forest are working to get into the mix.
Walker is unsure if he will make it to Wake's Junior Day.
Walker recorded 38 tackles, four fumble recoveries, three interceptions and 14 pass breakups to help lead Mallard Creek to the fourth round of the state playoffs and a 13-1 finish.
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