Raekwon McMillan (LB/2014) Talks Recruiting: CLA Recruit Spotlight

Raekwon McMillan is Nation's Top ILB

CLA spoke with Raekwon McMillan shortly after his recent unofficial visit to the University of Georgia. McMillan is considered by many to be the nation's top inside linebacker recruit in the class of 2014. We chatted about recruiting and asked Raekwon what he’s been up to since The Opening at Nike World Headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon.

If you sit back and think of the top BCS college football programs, it’s likely that McMillan has an offer from most of them. Georgia, Alabama, USC, Florida, Notre Dame, Michigan State, Texas, Ohio State, UCLA, Oregon and Washington are amongst the schools that have their sights set on 2014 Georgia product.

CLA Recruit Spotlight: Raekwon McMillan

“I just left UGA. I get to go to University of Georgia a lot. I've been up there 7 times. I'm most familiar with the UGA campus. Even before I was getting offers,” said McMillan.

The Liberty County High School All-American linebacker lives less than an hour away from Athens and the Bulldogs would be ecstatic to land McMillan to help bolster their 2014 recruiting class.

For many of the nation’s top HS football players, the recruiting process can become monotonous.

“Every college I go to talks about me having the opportunity to compete for early playing time. It's very intriguing… You can pick out who's real and who's just playing with you,” says McMillan.

Raekwon McMillan Junior Highlights

The allure of immediate playing time is only one of the factors recruits must consider while wading through the process. Academics, fanbase, alumni, coaching staff and facilities are amongst the plethora of things that can be influential in a recruit’s decision to attend a particular college.

Regardless of the opportunity to play early, McMillan understands that he’ll have to prove he belongs in the starting rotation at the next level.

“Where ever you go you're always going to have to compete for a spot,” he says.

This season McMillan plans to be involved more on the offensive side of the ball and will be featured at running back for the Panthers.

“We open up with our cross-town rivals Bradwell. I play running back and linebacker so I gotta put the numbers up,” says McMillan.

Last season, Raekwon was a difference maker in Liberty County’s 13-7 win over Bradwell and finished the game with 14 total tackles, 1 sack, and a forced fumble.

“We play 4A ball in Georgia. We play in the same division with teams like Waynes County and Sandy Creek… some of the best teams in the nation if we make it far enough,” said McMillan.

We asked the All-American about his experience at The Opening in Oregon and the talent on the Nike campus impressed him.

“Some guys like Ermon Lane, and some of those quarterbacks like Kyle Allen. Guys like DeShaun Watson, Jamal Adams, Joe Mixon, Adoree' (Jackson), K.D Cannon, Dante Booker… It shows that we're some of the best players in the nation right now for our age,” says Raekwon.

As McMillan prepares to make his college decision, it’s obvious that the strength of his recruiting class will play a role.

“It's important because you don't want to go into a weak class. You don't want to go into your senior year and have a 6-5 season. You want to know that your team is going to compete,” McMillan told CLA.

The recruiting world is easy to imagine from the outside looking in. Coaches taking visits to scout players, watching highlight videos, making phone calls, sending letters and communicating via social media are only one side of the coin.

When you have an understanding of the recruiting world from the student-athlete perspective, things become much more clear. It’s easy to see how college coaches and recruiters factor into the equation, but the X factor in all of this is other high school recruits.

I asked Raekwon about his recruitment and whether or not fellow recruits play a larger role in the process than college recruiters themselves.

“A lot of guys always contact me and ask me what school I'm interested in and try to sway me to go to the school they're going to. I get more attention from the players because those are the guys that you can actually have inside conversations with without really letting people know where you're leaning and where you want to go,” McMillan said.

It will be interesting to see how all of this plays out, but at the end of the day McMillan says that he’ll make the decision based on what’s best for him.

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Aaron Plunkett (Publisher)