July 8, 2010

Does UConn have a shot at Issaka?

Connecticut was one of the first schools to show interest in Woodbridge (N.J.) defensive end Max Issaka, but they will have plenty of competition to land the 6-foot-2, 228-pound prospect.

Issaka has already been to UConn, Rutgers and Pittsburgh, and plans to visit the rest of the schools on his list in the near future. His most recent visit was to Pitt, and he came away impressed.

"It was surprising in many ways," Issaka said of his visit to Pittsburgh. "It had a city atmosphere to it. I really liked it and I can see myself playing there."

While the Panthers rank among his early leaders, Issaka is still interested in what UConn has to offer.

"I wouldn't really be able to rank UConn, but they'd be near the top," said Issaka. "That's one place I know that can help me with my career as well as my academics."

Issaka visited UConn last month, but felt rushed because of a tight schedule. He has been in touch with head coach Randy Edsall and tight ends coach John Wholley about scheduling another visit to Storrs.

"The visit wasn't planned the right way, because it was a last minute thing, but it was great," said Issaka. "It was a camp, and as the camp was going on I got to talk to a couple of players and a couple of other recruits."

Despite UConn's early interest in Issaka, the Huskies were one of the most recent schools to follow through and offer him a scholarship.

"Their evaluation took a longer time," said Issaka. "They were one of the first schools to talk to me, but they were evaluating slower than the rest. They wanted to feel positive about everything before they offered me. I understood that. It was no problem for me."

Because Issaka is still visiting schools, he does not plan on making his decision any time soon. But he is beginning to feel some pressure as the summer months tick by.

"We're trying to take our time making a choice, but my coach wants me to make a decision by the end of [July]," said Issaka. "I can't really pinpoint a certain date."

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