LOUISVILLE - Every year, the greater Louisville area produces some of the top players in the South. Quite often, the top player in Louisville is considered to be the top player in Kentucky.
While the city may not boast the top player in the state in the Class of 2006, it does boast two of the Commonwealth's elite prospects.
Louisville (Ky.) Dupont Manual defensive end Aundre Henderson is a beast of a prospect, standing 6-foot-3 and weighing 275 pounds. Henderson already boasts a scholarship offer from the University of Kentucky.
"They (the Wildcats) are still my only offer right now," Henderson said. "I'm hearing a lot from some other schools like Michigan, Louisville, Michigan State, Indiana, Georgia Tech, Wake Forest and Purdue."
Dupont Manual High School literally sits across the street from the campus of the University of Louisville. But while Henderson certainly has the local school high on his list, he is far from a lock to play for the Cardinals next season.
"I might like to leave a little bit you know," Henderson said. "On one hand it would be nice to be able to keep going to school around here. It would make it easy on the family to come and see me play and it's all real familiar. At the same time it would still be like high school and I would never really be able to go off and get the true college experience."
During his junior campaign Henderson collected 45 tackles, seven tackles for loss and five sacks. He is an excellent student with a 3.25 grade point average and has a qualifying scored of 22 on the ACT.
Henderson is not the only tremendous defensive lineman in the Louisville area for the class of 2006, Louisville (Ky.) Central defensive end Corey Peters has already picked up offers from both in-state programs.
"Right now I have offers from Louisville and Kentucky, but I keep hearing from more and more schools," Peters said. "Auburn is a school that I have started hearing from that I'm really excited about, I like them a lot. I'm also hearing from Michigan, Clemson, Florida and a bunch of others."
The 6-foot-3, 270-pound Peters played alongside Michigan signee James McKinney during the 2004 season and actually made more tackles than his highly touted counterpart.
"I think in a lot of ways Corey is a better player than James was," Central head coach Steve Serotte said. "That is saying a lot because James is one of the better players we've had around here, but Corey is something special. One thing that sets Corey apart from everyone else is how smart he is. He's an excellent student in the classroom, but also a great student of the game."
Peters talked about his playing style and where he believes his strengths are. After watching his film, it is easy to see that he is accurate in describing his game.
"I am a real aggressive player," Peters said. "I come off of the edge real hard and I try to overpower people and I think they have a hard time with it. I'm quick off the ball, but I'm not real fast and I know that, so I have to use my strength to my advantage as much as I can."
While Peters has certainly caught the eye of many recruiters early in the process, he is not the only Central prospect that college recruiters will be checking out this fall. Defensive back Rico Neal already is drawing interest as well.
"I have been hearing from Louisville, Kentucky, Indiana and UCLA so far," Neal said. "It's a really cool honor to have all of these schools noticing you and starting to recruit you. As a little kid you never dream of having an opportunity like that and you always make it your dream and now it's happening and it's really cool."
All three Louisville prospects plan to attend the NIKE camp April 7 at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.