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Saturday, October 20, 2012
DT Manning gaining clarity after A&M visit

By Sam Khan Jr.

On Saturday afternoon, ESPN 150 defensive tackle Justin Manning was among dozens of recruits that took in the LSU-Texas A&M game at Kyle Field.

The 6-foot-2, 275-pound Dallas Kimball star, who is a target of both participating schools, got his Twitter followers buzzing on Saturday night after returning home from his trip to College Station, Texas, by indicating that he might be nearing a decision.

Justin Manning
ESPN 150 defensive tackle Justin Manning says he has an idea of which school he'll choose.
On his account, Manning posted: "I've enjoyed this long process so much.. But i think it's bout that time.."

So was he just having fun with his followers or is he truly getting closer to figuring things out?

"I really am (getting close to a decision)," Manning said via phone on Saturday night. "It's just better to get it over with because I'm tired now."

Manning has a top five that includes LSU, Oklahoma, TCU, Texas A&M and USC. He said that top five remains and didn't put them in a particular order, even though he hinted that he knows who the winner of his services might be.

"I kind of do (know)," Manning said.

Those reading into the timing of his comments coinciding with the fact that he visited the Aggies might be cautioned, because Manning isn't tipping his hand.

"It's still the same; they haven't really changed," Manning said of A&M's status. "It wasn't a negative nor a positive today."

He did say he enjoyed the visit, though. It was his second visit to College Station in as many months; he took an official visit when the Aggies played Arkansas on Sept. 29.

"It was real good," Manning said. "They played good defense today. Offense was just kind of slow."

Manning said he enjoyed the atmosphere with the dozens of other recruits in attendance, who were among 87,429 on hand.

"I can't explain it," he said. "It was just fun being out there with all the recruits and just looking more into Texas A&M."

He is considering heading to Norman, Okla., this coming weekend to take in the Sooners home game against Notre Dame. The week after, he is tentatively planning to visit LSU when the Tigers host Alabama.

While he has an idea of where he wants to commit, he doesn't have a timetable just yet. He was originally scheduled to announce his intentions on Oct. 19, but delayed that decision because he said he wasn't sure yet. He now appears to have gained more clarity in the process, though the timetable is still unknown. He said his plans could include a press conference either at his high school or a local news station.

"I don't know when I'm going to do it," he said.