May 27, 2009

Sanders giving others time to turn the Tide

Spring was busy enough for Vincent Sanders.

The summer, starting with seven-on-seven camps in less than two weeks, figures to be even busier.

The brief break between the end of school and the start of camps is proving to be pleasantly chaotic as well for the four-star wide receiver from Macon (Noxubee County), Miss.

On Tuesday afternoon, Sanders was on the phone with Wisconsin coaches, learning about the Badgers' program. An offer could be forthcoming. Florida State has been showing increased interest as well, and the Seminoles could be close to joining the fray for the 6-foot-3, 182-pound Sanders.

The interest from Wisconsin, Florida State and others is likely good news for Ole Miss and Mississippi State in that it's buying those schools more time to close the gap on Alabama.

"Alabama is recruiting me the hardest," Sanders said. "All of them are sending letters, but Alabama came over. (Alabama assistant) Coach (Bo) Davis visited me a couple of times. I've been talking to (Alabama) Coach (Nick) Saban a lot of times. Basically they're laid-back conversations. When I ask questions, I ask about what Alabama has to offer. They're basic conversations."

Sanders said he talked to Saban as recently as Monday.

"He called me and told me Happy Memorial Day," Sanders said. "I'm supposed to be giving over there on (June 5) and I'm taking my sister (Tawanda Ivy) to see what she thinks of it."

While Alabama has clearly made a strong impression, Sanders said he "doubts" he's getting close to a commitment to the Crimson Tide or anyone else just yet.

"I want to see who all offers me during the summertime," said Sanders, who teamed with Patrick Patterson last season to lead Noxubee County to a state championship. "I want to narrow my choices as the season goes on. I'm giving everybody an equal chance.

"I like the way MSU is rebuilding. I think I could come in and give a lot to the team. I like Ole Miss, too. I talked to (Ole Miss assistant) Coach (Derrick) Nix and (Ole Miss) Coach (Houston) Nutt two weeks ago. Ole Miss is still in pretty good shape also."

Sanders has offers from Ole Miss, Alabama, Mississippi State, Tennessee, Southern Mississippi and UAB. Louisiana Tech also visited during spring drills and appears poised to offer.

Sanders said he'll be attending 7-on7 camps at Alabama and Ole Miss (June 7) before leaving for a camp at Southern Cal on June 11. He also plans to attend individual camps at Southern Miss and Tennessee this summer.

He expects to spend most of his camp time playing wide receiver. Though several of the schools recruiting him _ including Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Alabama _ are talking about the possibility of moving Sanders to the secondary, most of the conversation lately has been about leaving Sanders' long frame and soft hands on offense.

"Florida State wants me to play receiver," Sanders said. "Wisconsin wants me to play receiver also. The other schools want me to keep an open mind. I grew up being a receiver, so if it came down to it, I would choose offense. But I think defense would be intense and it probably wouldn't matter."

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