Will Grier (Davidson, N.C./Davidson Day) isn't letting the absence of a scholarship offer affect which schools he's interested in.
That certainly keeps Duke in the mix. The Blue Devils' program was one of the schools that the junior inspected this summer, along with NC State, South Carolina and the schools that have offered him a scholarship: East Carolina, Florida, North Carolina, Tennessee and Wake Forest.
“When they saw me they were really impressed with how well I threw the ball,” Grier said of Duke's coaches. “They wanted to see more I guess because that was the first time seeing me.”
In particular, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Kurt Roper expressed how impressed he was with Grier's performance. Grier admitted that he was a bit surprised he didn't receive a scholarship offer during the visit.
“Honestly, yeah, I thought I had a pretty good day,” Grier said. “I did some agility stuff and I ran a good 40 time. I don't know necessarily if they're just waiting or want something else in a quarterback. I'm not sure. I was kind of surprised because how impressed Coach Roper was and how much he liked me.
“I guess I was kind of surprised but it's nothing that's going to knock me down and nothing that I'm going to hold against them. They could offer me next year and it would be the same. I've got some time in this in this recruiting process.”
So does Grier, who completed 29 of 36 passes for 493 yards and six touchdowns Friday in a 42-35 win over North Raleigh, think a scholarship offer is coming from the Blue Devils and coach David Cutcliffe?
“You never know,” Grier said. “Coach Cutcliffe is a great coach and Coach Roper is a great coach. I respect them a lot. If everything were to work I could see myself there. I'm just keeping my options open. We'll see.”
Grier has plenty of reason to be interested in Duke. Cutcliffe has a long history of molding quarterbacks, namely NFL standouts Peyton Manning and Eli Manning. The school is also well known for its academics.
“I respect him a lot,” Grier said of Cutcliffe. “Obviously he's had success. That's definitely a place I'm interested in. I want to build a relationship with them and see where it goes. We'll see ... Academics are really important because football is going to end one day. I've always been fairly smart in school, so I want to continue that and see where it takes me in life after football.”
Grier said a good relationship with college coaches and a fair chance to play will be key in his recruitment. He is also wondering whether South Carolina will extend him a scholarship offer after, he said, he thought he performed well at a summer camp in Columbia.
South Carolina has a commitment at quarterback for the 2013 class, Connor Mitch from Raleigh (N.C.) Wakefield, but it doesn't seem that will scare away Grier.
“I'm all about competition,” Grier said. “If I go there and he beats me out, he beats me out. I'm the type of guy that I want to play, and over time I'm going to win the job. That's my mentality going in.”
Grier said he has spoken with Mitch at several camps and he's utilizing the advice passed to him by the older QB.
“He just said, 'Find what fits.' ” Grier said. “Go where you can play and where you have good relationships.' That's what I'm looking for.”
Proximity to his home could also play into Grier's decision.
“I'd prefer to stay fairly regional, but that's not in my decision-making process,” he said. “I preferably want to stay Southeast, but if everything is perfect somewhere out West, I'd be perfectly fine with hopping on a plane and heading out West if that's what's best for me.”