2022 OL Eli Henderson Excited About Opportunities

July 24, 2019

People always told Eli Henderson‍ he would have the chance to play college football at the highest level.

“I never saw it until my first offer,” the 2022 South Carolina offensive lineman told Irish Sports Daily recently.

The first offer was a big one for the 6-foot-4, 283-pounder who is entering his sophomore season at Byrnes High School, coming from Georgia on June 9th.

“It wasn’t real until that happened,” Henderson continued. “It was amazing, it still is amazing. I cried, my family cried, my Mama cried. Everybody cried. It was a surreal moment. From a school of that caliber with that history, that’s one of the best feelings I’ve had in my entire life.”

Henderson is also receiving interest from several other major college programs, who could offer soon.

“South Carolina, I feel like they’re going to probably come next year or the first couple games this year to be honest,” he said. “Clemson has a lot of interest in me. They met with me in the summer and they told me they need to see me play a couple of games and that’s all they need to see. Clemson is really, really on me.

“Virginia Tech is real close. Virginia is close. Tennessee has some interest in me. Florida State has a lot of interest me. South Carolina, Clemson, Virginia Tech and Tennessee are the ones that are on me the most.”

Notre Dame has also shown some early interest.

“They sent me a couple things about the camp, some letters about camp,” Henderson explained. “I wasn’t able to get up there, but I really want to.

“It’s no secret that Notre Dame is a top-tier team and it’s Lineman University. That’s where top-tiered linemen come from. There’s something special about wearing that gold helmet.”

Henderson said he “definitely” plans on camping in South Bend next summer.

“I think one of the most important things when you’re visiting a college is meeting the coaches you’ll be spending your time with,” he said. “Obviously, I’ll be spending my time with the OL coach. I really want to see the kind of guy he is and see what schemes and stuff he teaches and his guys’ interactions with him. I think that’s probably the most important thing, the player interaction with the coach.”

Georgia’s offensive line coach, Chris Pittman, has made an early impression and gave Henderson some positive feedback.

“He told me, ‘For your age and even a high school senior, your technique is impeccable,’” said Henderson. “I pride myself on having good technique. You can be the biggest and strongest, but if you don’t know how to do any of it, it’s nothing. The biggest strength of my game that he told me was my technique and my length. He said if you put that together, it’s pretty nasty.”

Henderson has plenty of time before he needs to make his college decision, but knows relationships will be a major part of it when that time does come.

“The most important thing to me will probably be the player and coach communication and relationship. I’m going to spend more time with the OL coach than my own family for four years, so if I don’t like him and he doesn’t like me, what’s the point of doing that? I feel like I have to a good relationship with the school too.”

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