Restocking the linebacker unit is always a recruiting priority, for the USF staff and the ’09 class is no different after the Bulls graduating 2 starters after the season. One of the top recruits this year is DeDe Lattimore from Cedar Shoals HS in Athens, GA. He’s been mentioned quite a bit on USFNation.com as one of the top linebackers on the board, and is coming in this weekend for a visit.
“I’m going to South Florida this weekend, I’ve never been to Tampa and I’m real excited to check out the campus.”
DeDe (Short for Devekeyan) Latimore, he’s a 6’1-225 pound 3-star LB and is the 17th ranked SLB in the nation by Scout, and the Bulls have been interest in him since the Cedar Shoal standout recorded an amazing 118 total tackles, 18 for a loss, 12 sacks and 18 quarterback hurries in 10 games as a junior. DeDe’s stock went up even more at the Scout.com Combine in early May, when he ran a 4.5 sec. 40, a 4.35 sec. shuttle, recorded a 31.5 inch vertical, and the Bulls have been recruiting him ever since.
“I Talked with Coach Leavitt and Coach Gregory. They tell me they like what they see in me as a player,” DeDe added “I play mostly middle, and the Bulls are talking to me about playing in the middle, but it doesn’t matter because I can go inside, outside and sideline to sideline.”
This season Lattimore helped lead Cedar Shoals to the playoffs with a 7-4 record, and was named the Defensive Player of the Year in Region 8-AAAA and received an Honorable Mention All-State by the AJC after finishing the 2008 season with 46 tackles, nine for loss, four sacks and four forced fumbles. He was also named to the 2008 Georgia Athletic Coaches Association All-Star Team, the All-Northeast Georgia Team, and is coveted by a list of big time college programs.
“I’ve been offered by UAB, Clemson, Kentucky, Louisville, Oklahoma State, Michigan, South Carolina State, Alabama State, South Florida and Central Florida.”
With over 15 scholarship offers DeDe said he’s likes all the schools but is looking hard at USF, Oklahoma State, Kentucky, Louisville, and Michigan, but said other schools are also in the picture.
"I'm basically looking for a good coaching staff, a good environment, good academics and where I really feel at home," said Lattimore. "I’d like to play early, but early playing time isn’t a big issue."
The Defensive Player of the Year says he’s somewhat familiar with USF, but eager to know more.
“USF is a very good program that’s on the rise," he said. "They've improved a lot and I like the coaches a lot. The team has come a long way, but they are still young and can get even better.”
This will be the first official visit for Lattimore but he’s still in the process of setting up his visit schedule.
“Oklahoma State, Louisville and Kentucky are all trying to set up a visit, but with my basketball schedule it’s been tough.”
DeDe has never been to Tampa before but his coach is good friends with Coach Leavitt, and has told him all sorts of good things.
"My Coach told me Tampa is a fun place, it's a great location and there's a lot to do there. It would be a fun place to live, and that Coach Leavitt is a great coach. I can’t wait to check it out myself."
Stick with USFNation.com for another update with DeDe Lattimore as we follow him through this recruitment and see how his visit goes.