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August 2, 2008Fayetteville (Starr's Mill HS), Ga. linebacker Stephen Roberts isn't showing his hand when it comes to a favorite school, but Ole Miss may be in good shape for the prospect after he made his second trip to the Oxford campus this year.
Roberts showed up at the Ole Miss senior camp last Saturday and checked in at 6-foot-3, 208 pounds, ran a 4.6 40-yard dash and had a 34-inch vertical leap.
The two-star rated linebacker is up to ten offers with Ole Miss, Indiana, Louisville, Purdue, UCF, East Carolina, Akron, Troy, Ohio, and Mississippi State all in the mix for the prospect's signature next February. He's also getting interest from Wake Forest, Vanderbilt, and Minnesota.
"I really don't have a favorite at this point," Roberts said on Thursday. "I just want to see who else offers and then I'll make a decision."
While that may sound like Roberts could be waiting on a school that is yet to offer - perhaps a home state favorite school like Georgia or Georgia Tech - he says that's not the case as he didn't grow up a fan of any certain school.
Roberts attended Ole Miss junior day last spring and followed that up with a second trip for Houston Nutt's Ole Miss Football Camp.
"Me and my Dad took a couple of my teammates and went over for the day last Saturday," Roberts said. "My teammates, they're really not Division I prospects, we just took them along for the experience."
While at Ole Miss, Roberts talked with Rebel defensive coordinator Tyrone Nix, who also coaches linebackers and recruits portions of Georgia for the Rebels.
"He said physically, I look good," Roberts said. "He said they'd want to put some weight on me but for me not to worry about that, that would be easy. I like the way Coach Nix and Coach (Houston) Nutt worked us at the camp. They worked us hard but gave us breaks and made the camp fun."
"Coach Nix said they really, really want me to be a Rebel," Roberts said. "I like them, but I want to see what other schools may offer. I'll probably wait until around mid-season, or maybe right after the season to make a decision."
Roberts said Ole Miss is "in serious contention for his services."
Roberts amassed approximately 95 tackles with eight sacks last season while playing mostly defensive end and saw limited action as a tight end.
This year, his high school coaches plan to use his talents differently. He'll be playing outside linebacker on defense and an have an increased role on offense, where he'll be used at fullback.
Roberts has also camped at UCF, Auburn, and Florida State in addition to the Ole Miss camp.
While Roberts is in no hurry to make a verbal pledge, he has narrowed down his criteria for picking a school.
"I want to go somewhere where the coaches care for you as a person, just not as a football player," he said. "Academics are also important."
The next step for Roberts is setting up his five official visits - which he says he'll take all five - but hasn't decided which schools will receive a visit.
Roberts says he currently carries a GPA of around 2.7 or 2.8 and has taken the SAT once, but wants to improve his score.
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