With 57 written scholarship offers, Trinity linebacker Andrew Sweat was afforded the luxury of being able to choose a college based on his own set of criteria.
The 6-foot-1, 230-pound Sweat took into consideration variables such as the programs’ tradition, depth chart, proximity and academic reputations. Tops on his list were the comfort level with the campus and the school’s coaching staff.
After narrowing his choice to two schools, Sweat took one last road trip to get a feel for his future home. He plans to confer with Trinity coach Ed Dalton and announce his college choice later this week.
“I wanted to go to Notre Dame again,” Sweat said, “and I stopped at Ohio State on the way home to compare and contrast.”
In South Bend, Sweat had Fighting Irish coach Charlie Weis as a personal chauffer, and they cruised around campus in a golf cart. Sweat also ate lunch on campus with defensive coordinator Corwin Brown.
“They were pretty cool,” Sweat said. “They didn’t pressure me. There were other schools that did pressure me and I pretty much wiped them off my list. Notre Dame has been pretty fair and straight forward.”
In Columbus, Sweat and his family took an informal look at the campus one last time. (He has visited Ohio State eight times, compared to three for Notre Dame).
It’s difficult to distinguish which one is the leader, although Sweat seems to be enamored with the idea of playing at Notre Dame. He mentioned its “superb” academics, especially its business school, and the fact that the Irish are on national television every week.
Yet Ohio State has been considered a long-time favorite for Sweat, perhaps because of its ability to churn out NFL linebackers and its recent Big Ten dominance. Sweat also has developed a close bond with the Buckeyes coaching staff, especially linebackers coach Luke Fickell.
Following an intense recruiting battle, Sweat is almost ready to announce his decision. His top priority thereafter is to have his life return to some sense of normalcy.
“I want to go back to what got me to this point, training and everything,” Sweat said. “You kind of get away from what you got there because you have to take so many trips. I want to get away from it and be a kid again.”