D’Andre Payne has a busy month of June ahead of him. The 2014 cornerback out of Woodson H.D. in Washington D.C. is already approaching 20 offers, and the 5-9, 172-pounder plans to visit a number of campuses in the first half of June.
Michigan is joined on Payne’s offer list by the likes of Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Penn State, Maryland, Georgia Tech, North Carolina, Ohio State, Virginia and Virginia Tech. He will visit Virginia on June 3. On June 8, Payne will depart for the Midwest, where he will visit Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Wisconsin over the period of several days. Following a brief stay at home, he will hit the road again, this time visiting North Carolina, North Carolina State, Duke and East Carolina.
Wolverine assistant Curt Mallory is heading up Payne’s recruitment for Michigan.
“Michigan is a great program,” Payne said. “Great academics, great tradition and a great coaching staff. It has a great atmosphere and a great campus. And a cornerback from this area, Blake Countess, is doing well there. I saw him on the field against Virginia Tech, so I’ve seen that they get their best guys on the field.”
While some recruits with Payne’s offer list would not participate in a summer camp, Payne will be on hand for Michigan’s one-day camp.
“I want to meet the coaches and see what they’re all about,” Payne said. “I want to see how the coaches are coaching. Coach Mallory has got a good idea of what I can do, and I want to see him on the field coaching.”
Payne knows the type of coach he wants to play for at the next level.
“I want a coach that stays on top of me through everything,” Payne said. “Someone that’ll make me work better and harder. I want a coach that’s tough on me 24/7, which will make me a better player.”
There is still a long way to go in Payne’s recruitment, but five schools are currently catching his eye.
“Virginia, Michigan, Virginia Tech, Colorado and Arkansas,” Payne said.
What stands out about each school?
“I really like Virginia,” Payne said. “I’ve been down there three times, and I’m going down there this time just to have fun with those guys. They have a good coaching staff, they have great players and the academics are outstanding.”
“I really like Michigan,” Payne said. “I want to get to know more. I feel as though Michigan is a good place.”
Two H.D. Woodson alums – Boye Aromire and Darius Redman – play for Virginia Tech, and Payne also knows freshman running back J.C. Coleman.
“They have a pretty good history of defensive backs from H.D. Woodson,” Payne said of Virginia Tech. “They have great tradition, a great coaching staff and it’s a big-time school. I have teammates from high school that go there, and they’re trying to get me to go down there.”
“Arkansas is a good program as well,” Payne said. “They had a little issue, but it should be cleared up soon. Darren McFadden was a big-time cat, and Felix Jones came out of there. It’s a winning program in the SEC, which is big.”
Payne, who plans to be an early enrollee in January of 2014, is currently carrying a 3.7 GPA. He was named First Team All-Conference as a sophomore, posting 43 tackles, four interceptions, two punt returns for a touchdown, and one kickoff return for a touchdown.