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Monday, June 24, 2013
RB Ollison breaks down top-five group

By Jared Shanker

With 15 offers, Qadree Ollison (Buffalo, N.Y./Canisius) felt it was time to trim his list some. He did that Monday when he named a top five.

Penn State, Pitt, Rutgers, Syracuse and Wisconsin are the five schools at the top for the three-star running back, although he is not ruling his list a final five. He has visited every school on his list, with the exception of Wisconsin.

The theme among his five schools is they all fit the mold of how the 6-foot-1, 228-pound back would like to be used.

“I want to play in a pro-style offense,” Ollison said.

Ollison broke down his five finalists with RecruitingNation shortly after releasing the list.

Penn State: “I went on my visit to Penn State, and I watched the Blue-White game. I really enjoyed my visit there. It’s a great place, great facilities and with what they went through, their fans and people stuck together. They’re still bringing in 110,000 in Beaver Stadium.” (Note: Penn State has two running back commitments already and might not have space for Ollison.)

Pitt: “They run that Wisconsin style offense. They’re going to run the ball. They’re moving into the ACC and are going to play great competition. I really like the campus and the town of Pittsburgh. My coach was born in Pittsburgh and talks highly of the city.”

Rutgers: “I went down about a week or two ago. I like the whole family thing they preach over there. Some people say they preach family, but you go [to Rutgers] and it’s all over the place. The coaches wear it on their wrist, in the locker room. ... You’re comfortable around those coaches. They like to joke around, but they’re also serious.”

Syracuse: “I went to Syracuse about a month or two ago and had a really long talk with Coach [Scot] Shafer. He’s a down to earth guy. They offered me late but were in a tough spot with Doug Marrone moving on and taking some coaches. When I went down and got on campus, I loved it, and I have a good connection with the coaches. The history of running backs there with Jim Brown and Ernie Davis, who wouldn’t want to follow in those guys’ steps and maybe make some comparisons?”

Wisconsin: “That’s a great academic school, a lot of people don’t know that. It’s a great education. On the football side, they’re going to run the ball 50 times a game. The first guy is going to have 300 carries and the second guy might have 150 and the third guy might even have 75. There’s no secret to what Wisconsin is doing. They’re going to play smash mouth football. They’re in the Big Ten and need big backs to run the ball. They have a history of great backs, and that’s something I would like to continue. [Running backs] Coach [Thomas] Hammock is a great coach and a great guy that I’d enjoy being coached by.”

Ollison plans to officially visit Wisconsin, and he will make as many as three official visits before committing.