While Duke worked hard to improve their defense on the field this spring, the coaching staff is also working hard to upgrade the defense with a talented group of prospects in the class of 2012. The Duke staff has targeted an elite group of defensive backs who already have received verbal scholarship offers from the Blue Devils, among several other top programs. The Blue Devils added a quality cornerback from Florida in the class of 2011 in Tim Burton, and hope to do the same in the class of 2012. One of the most recent prospects to pick up a verbal scholarship offer is Larry Hope, a 5’11” 167 pound prospect from Miami, Florida.
BDN: Can you start off by describing your strengths for fans who haven’t had a chance to see you play?
Well, I think, college coaches say they like about me is that I’m the best man-to-man coverage player that they’ve seen. I’m good for my height, I’m a very big player, strong and physical, and very fast. When it comes down to shutting down a receiver, I think I’m the guy. But I like my actions to speak for themselves.
BDN: What are some of the things you have been working on this offseason?
I’m working on getting stronger. I’m in the weight room every single day, even on weekdays, weekends I’m outside trying to get faster. We’re trying to get faster and stronger.
BDN: What are some of your goals for yourself and your team in your senior season?
As a team, I want to come together and bond so we can have a better year than last year and hopefully make it to the playoffs. Me, I just want to do what I’ve been doing, come out there and play my role as I’ve been doing.
BDN: As you look at your college decision, what are the most important factors you are looking for in a school?
I’m looking for a family bond and someone that can help me become a better player for the next level, because that’s what everybody wants to do. But I’m looking for a family bond, someone that’s like a father figure at college, and most of the colleges that I’ve been talking to that have offered me, has been that. They call me, I call them, and we talk on a daily basis, get that family bond. They mostly are defensive back coaches, and mostly played DB at the next level, so that’s what I’m looking for.
BDN: Which schools have you in contact with the most, and which schools have extended verbal offers?
I have seven offers from Wisconsin, Buffalo, Nebraska, USF, Louisville, Duke, and Kansas. West Virginia and Miami, Florida State, and Florida, they all want to come to my spring practice – Ole Miss and North Carolina are all coming to my spring practice, sometime around the first of May or the first week in May.
BDN: Have you had a chance to take any visits this spring?
In the summer I plan on visiting all the colleges that have offered me. When it comes to visits, so far I’ve visited Miami, Florida State, and Florida, and USF and UCF, and that’s it.
BDN: Have any schools impressed you or surprised you at this point in the process, either on your visits or your contact with coaches?
Well, no, all the colleges that have offered me are trying to impress me, so not yet.
BDN: Do you have an idea for how or when you would like to narrow your list of schools down and ultimately make a decision?
Me and my dad are weighing my options and just sitting back and relaxing. We’re trying to gain that bond, if I feel like I’m comfortable with a school, there’s no time limit on when I’ll decide.
BDN: Is there anything else you think is important for college football fans to know about you?
I feel like I’m more loyal to football now. Everything revolves around football and I’m working harder than I’ve ever been working, and I like what I’ve been seeing and I’m going to keep putting more into my craft.
BDN: Thanks a lot, Larry, and best of luck to you.
Alright, thanks a lot.