On January 31st, Ahmonte Watkins received his first offer from the University of Virginia. Five months later Watkins made his way to Charlottesville for an unofficial visit to see what the program had to offer.
It was evident that the whole Cavalier coaching staff was ecstatic to have Watkins on campus for the first time, which made him feel at home right away. “Soon as I stepped on campus I felt a really good vibe from everybody,” Watkins said. “Everybody is genuine & it felt like I’ve been knowing them for years.”
Virginia head coach Bronco Mendenhall was blown away with how Watkins competed & tested at their elite prospect camp on his visit. Watkins was timed at a 4.49 in the forty, 10-1 broad jump, & a 36 inch vertical.
He was also very good in individual instruction & one on ones. “Coach Atuaia (RBs coach) coached me real hard at the camp & I love the passion he coaches with,” Watkins said. “I wanted to come out there & show them that they didn’t make a mistake offering me first. “My goal was to prove that I was the best prospect at the camp & I think I did that.”
It’s clear that the Virginia coaching staff made a big impression on the four-star prospect led by area recruiter Ricky Brumfield & senior scout Jordan Arcement, who are both Louisiana natives. “Coach Brumfield is really cool & down to earth,” Watkins said. “Him & the entire staff at Virginia are some really good people that truly care about their players. I got to see first hand the relationship between the coaches & the players. You can tell it wasn’t anything scripted & that was big to me.”
Watkins currently only holds offers from Virginia, Miami, Colorado, Southern Miss, & Nicholls St at the moment. He’s gained a lot of attention as of late from Mississippi St, Alabama, Michigan, Georgia, Louisiana Tech, & UL. “Miami & Alabama have been my dream schools since I was a kid,” he said. “I look forward to seeing what those programs have to offer in the future. But, Virginia really open my eyes to what a program is suppose to look like. Coach Mendenhall is a great leader & he’s different, but a good different. I love how he challenges his players physically & mentally. It’s not just about football up there, it’s about making you a better man.”
The 5-foot-10, 176 pound Watkins out of Riverside Academy is on his way to being a household name. He is a true speedster who won the open 100 & 200 meter at the state championships this past May. In the 100 meters he finished with a (10.71) & (21.7) in the 200 meters. His freshman year he was clocked at a 10.44 in the 100 meter, which caught the eye of a lot of people around the state. “Track will always be one of my first loves,” Watkins said. “I like the fact that at Virginia they want me to play both football & track. They made it clear while I was up there that I’m a high priority in both sports & that made me feel really good.”
With Watkins still having two years of high school left which is scary, it’s going to be interesting to see if & will Virginia get to land him when it’s all said & done. “I don’t want to be one of the those kids that drags this process out going through my senior year,” he said. Me & my dad talked about me committing after my junior year so that’s the plan.”
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