For the past two seasons, Aberdeen (Miss.) junior Channing Ward has made his share of big plays on the defensive side of the football. Last fall he totals 132 tackles, including 17 tackles for loss and 12 sacks. In addition to being a defensive stand out he also experienced a new position on the offensive side at tight end.
Despite being new to the spot, Ward had 396 receiving yards and five touchdowns and that will lead to continued offensive looks.
"I will still play some tight end this year," said the 6-foot-4 and 245-pound defensive end. "It is kinda easier now because I am used to running routes and then just going back over to defense. Yea, they are different positions but with tight end and defensive end, you have to use your hands well at both positions. So I just want to better myself at both positions this year."
Having already collected offers from almost the entire SEC as well as Notre Dame, Southern Miss, Memphis and Louisiana-Lafayette, Ward has already taken trips to Mississippi State, Ole Miss and LSU this spring. He also plans to make a few more visits down the road.
"I am getting kinda used to all the attention now and it is getting normal for me and no big deal," said Ward, who is also running track this spring and is on the 4 x 1 and 4 x 2 relay teams. "I haven't been anywhere lately, though. I was supposed to go to Auburn last weekend but I couldn't make it. So I am going to try to go to Auburn and Alabama soon. I saw both of those schools in the fall but not yet in the spring.
"My mom and me are going to see what trips we can make. I plan to go see Mississippi State and Ole Miss, too, for spring practice but I am not sure what spring games I am going to. I am also supposed to go to an UnderArmour camp in New Orleans next week and then try to make a Nike camp."
While Ward has numerous offers and has made several visits to BCS programs, he has long noted that he's in no hurry to make his decision.
"I really don't have any favorites," said Ward. "And I probably won't know until the season starts up so I can see how teams look. I want to see how these teams do this year. I am also looking at the coaching staff and the enrivonment at these schools. I also like to see a winning environment and how the players react to their coaches."