Four-star offensive tackle Connor McLaughlin left his official visit to Georgia Tech this past weekend impressed with what he saw.
“It was really good,” McLaughlin said. “It was high on my list. I wasn’t expecting it to be that high.”
McLaughlin, from Jesuit High in Tampa, Fla., was offered by Tech May 9 and has been recruited by offensive line coach Brent Key. Tech was his second official visit, following one to Iowa June 7. He has another planned for Stanford this week and is contemplating using his fourth of five official visits to see UCLA also as his recruitment heats up. McLaughlin was one of 13 prospects to make their official visit to Tech this past weekend. McLaughlin, who is 6-foot-7 and 260 pounds, is a top-300 prospect (247 Sports composite). At least from a ratings standpoint, McLaughlin would be a noteworthy commitment for coach Geoff Collins. Only one prospect committed to Tech’s 2020 class has a higher 247 Sports composite rating.
“I feel like every day my choices get harder and harder,” McLaughlin said. “I learn more about the schools and they’re all such good schools, all such good options.”
McLaughlin liked getting to know Key, whom he called “the best in the business.” In spending time with him, McLaughlin said that he tried to “analyze” Key and figure out his personality. He said that Key isn’t the typical offensive line coach, even in the way that he dresses.
“He showed up wearing Yeezys, that’s one thing,” McLaughlin said, referring to the line of sneakers created by Adidas in collaboration with Kanye West.
He liked, too, that he is a lot looser than most offensive line coaches but in a meeting or practice setting can be all business.
“He can flip the switch,” McLaughlin said. “Not a lot of coaches can do that.”
He liked, too, getting to know the offensive linemen that he met, including his host Jack DeFoor.
“I wasn’t with that many offensive linemen, but I liked the way they acted,” he said. “They weren’t pretentious and they were confident, but they weren’t prideful.”
McLaughlin had questions about where things stood as Tech is making a coaching transition and liked what he heard there, too. He appreciated that Key was interested in knowing what McLaughlin thought was lacking that could make the team better. He said Key told him that he had personally fund-raised from former teammates to purchase additional practice equipment.
“They’re really trying to improve and they’re not like some schools, just stagnating,” he said. “They have money but they don’t spend it on the best things. GT is very utilitarian and they have everything that’s necessary.”
Given that he’s also considering Iowa and Stanford, among others, Tech’s location is a plus, and the academics are a match for someone who said that he doesn’t want to pick a school “where you’re just a football player.”
McLaughlin is not in a rush to make a decision, but he’d like to make his commitment before his senior season begins.
“From what I hear from a lot of people, it’s whenever you feel like it’s right,” McLaughlin said.
Whatever happens, Tech figures to be in the mix.
After the visit to Atlanta, “I feel a lot more confident,” he said.
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