December 3, 2009

Speedy NC athlete enjoys GT visit

Jordan High School (Durham, N.C.) athlete T.J. Thorpe has been a busy man for the last few months visiting college campuses and dominating on both sides of the ball for his team. Thorpe was in Atlanta last Saturday to watch Georgia Tech in their annual rivalry showdown Georgia. The fleet-footed receiver/defensive back was impressed with what he saw.

"The atmosphere was really exciting, loud and energetic," Thorpe said. "The crowd and the stadium made me want to get on the field and play. It was amazing and you don't get to play in front of that many people with it being that loud. I thought Tech battled really hard. When Josh Nesbitt went down early in the game and they way they bounced back from that showed their character as a team."

The Tech staff paid a lot of attention to Thorpe during his visit and let him know he was in their future plans.

"I talked to Coach Todd Spencer as well as the receiver coach Buzz Preston," Thorpe said. "They told me it was a pleasure to have me come to the game all the way from Durham and that they want me to come to their junior day. They told me how they are looking forward to having me at Georgia Tech someday and they plan on making me an offer soon."

The trip to Atlanta was Thorpe's last visit until junior days.

"I think Georgia Tech was my last visit this year, but I will go to some camps this summer with some of the SEC schools and a lot of the schools recruiting me out of state," he said. "I will go to some different games next season."

The Bobby Dodd Stadium environment impressed Thorpe in comparison with the other schools he has been to.

"All the stadiums have been pretty lively, but Georgia Tech was more energetic because it was a rivalry game with Georgia. It was a really great experience," he said.

Thorpe has offers from almost of the instate powers Duke, North Carolina, East Carolina, and N.C. State. Two other schools are on the cusp of offering Thorpe as well.

"I think Georgia Tech and Wake Forest will be the next two schools to offer out of the main schools recruiting me," he said. "I don't think any one school is recruiting me harder than the others. They all have different approaches and styles of recruiting. Each school is making me feel like they are recruiting me hard."

So far, Thorpe does not have a clear leader.

"I don't really have a top school. There are different things I like about each school, I don't really have a leader or a top three right now," he said. "I do plan on having something planned out to narrow things down soon. I will probably do that before the end of the summer so I can enjoy my senior year of playing football."

Thorpe plans to commit before the start of his senior season if possible.

"Hopefully I can make my decision before the start of the senior season so I can really enjoy it," he said. "I will go to some junior day camps at Clemson, North Carolina, Georgia Tech and a few others. I have not had a chance to talk to some of the other coaches yet to set things up.

For his junior campaign, Thorpe set a state record as a kick returner and shined on both sides of the ball.

"Well I had a good season with 930 yards receiving and five receiving touchdowns. I also set the state record for kick returns for a touchdown in a season with five," Thorpe said. "I also had three interceptions. We made it to the playoffs and lost in the first round. We had a record around .500. We did pretty good, but I was a little disappointed with how we played at specific points in time. We also had a lot of key injuries on our offensive line which set us back."

The staff at Jordan High School is not concerned about Thorpe staying in shape. He is busy playing two other sports when he is not on the football field.

"I am playing basketball right now," Thorpe said. "In the spring I will run track and I workout with my personal trainer for football and I have a personal trainer for basketball as well. I do workouts with them throughout the week and sometimes on the weekend to help me keep in shape for the combines coming up in the winter."

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