Picayune, Miss.--Auburn picked up a football verbal commitment for the 2008 signee class on Wednesday from a defensive back who is interested in playing for Auburn's defensive coordinator as well as the Tigers.
"After the visits to Auburn I decided it was the place to me," Drew Cole tells Inside the Auburn Tigers. "I love the defense Coach (Will) Muschamp runs. I love the coaching staff and love I the town of Auburn."
From his playing days at Georgia, his time spent at Auburn as a graduate assistant and defensive coordinator, and from his stint as coordinator at LSU, Muschamp has built a reputation for his defensive knowledge around the southeast.
Not all coordinators are known for their recruiting abilities, but Muschamp’s name and reputation payed off with the cornerback prospect out of Picayune, Miss., Memorial High School.
“Coach (Don) Dunn and Coach Muschamp are recruiting me,” Cole explains. “I’ve known Coach Muschamp because he recruited my brother (Mit Cole) to LSU when he coached at LSU. I’ve known him since I was a little kid and going to camp. He’s recruiting me more than Coach Dunn is, but Coach Dunn recruits me, too. He’s the area coach who recruits me.”
Q&A With Drew Cole
With early offers from Mississippi State and Auburn, the junior cornerback gave a lot of thought about how he can fit in with Muschamp's schemes and as a part of Coach Tommy Tuberville's program.
“I think I’m fast, I read receivers well and I’m a good cover guy,” Cole notes. “That’s what Auburn tells me. When I come there they want me to play cover corner. They said they need defensive backs and they’re short on defensive backs.
"Coach Muschamp says that if someone runs four or five receivers he has to have a nickel or dime package in the game, which puts a lot of defensive backs in the game and gives you an opportunity to play. So I think I’m a good cover guy and I’m fast and I run to the ball well.
“Coach Muschamp mixes it up a lot,” he continues. “Every now and then he’ll bring a corner on the blitz and I like that. He definitely has a unique scheme in the way he does things and that really stands out to me.”
Cole narrowed his list to three schools before picking Auburn.
“My top three were Auburn, Mississippi State and LSU,” he explains. “That’s basically who it has been down to. I don’t think there is any in-state pressure."
“I went to Ole Miss’ junior day and I went to LSU twice this spring,” Cole adds. “I haven’t been to Mississippi State and checked their stuff out. Ole Miss went okay. They were recruiting me and basically said they want to get me into camp this summer before they offer. I went to camp at Auburn last year and that’s really how the coaches found out about me when I tested out for them."
Out of his top three schools, Cole didn't have an offer from LSU and didn't yet visit Starkville. He has, however, visited Auburn twice this spring and that played a big part in the decision.
“I was there for A-Day and I was there for the first junior day,” he says. “It went real good. I got to meet with Coach (Tommy) Tuberville, coach Dunn and coach Muschamp so it went real good. Their facilities are top of the line and as nice as everyone else’s. I love their facilities, I like their weight room and it’s all real nice.
“I’ll be in town for the first camp or whenever I can get back over there,” he adds of Auburn.
Cole plays running back and cornerback at Picayune Memorial, and says that his future at the college level is most likely as a defensive back.
“I’m 6-foot and I weigh 181. We maxed out at our school last week and I bench pressed 260 pounds and I squatted 350. I power cleaned 250. I’m running track right now and I just run the 100, the 4x100 and 4x200 relay. My best 100 time so far is a 10.72. I’ve been clocked at 4.41 in the 40.”
Big brother Mit Cole, a tight end, will be a senior this year at LSU so the two wouldn’t have an opportunity to play together if Drew were to sign with Les Miles. The younger Cole, who started getting letters from college several years ago, was able to learn about the recruiting process during the family’s first go-around so it’s been easy on him thus far.
“I started getting letters after my 10th grade year,” Cole says, “then I started getting texts and phone calls right after signing day this year. I learned a lot with my brother going through it. Just be humble because a lot of kids don’t even get the calls and the text messages. It doesn’t really bother me. If somebody wants to take the time to talk to me then I’ll take the time to talk to them.”
Video of Cole:
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