Four-star linebacker Justice Dingle is beginning the process of narrowing down his college choices.
“Right now, I’m trying to visit all the schools and start to narrow it down,” Dingle told GN. “Probably late this summer or beginning of my senior season, I will have the decision on what school I want to go to.”
Dingle (6 feet 2, 243 pounds), from Bowling Green (Ky.) High, is among the top 15 inside linebacker prospects in the country and a top-five overall recruit in Kentucky for the class of 2018.
Dingle describes his game as you would expect any linebacker would: “I am real physical and explosive, and I think I’m very versatile.”
Dingle – who played at Murfreesboro (Tenn.) Oakland before moving to Bowling Green before his junior season – has played both inside and outside linebacker in high school, but expects to play inside in college.
“I hear mostly inside linebacker,” Dingle said. “I wouldn’t mind playing inside or outside. This upcoming season, I will be playing inside linebacker.”
Dingle has SEC offers from Tennessee and Kentucky, and says he likes both programs. He especially likes what he sees on Rocky Top.
“The atmosphere and the culture that they have there – they have a real good coaching staff that really opens up to you and makes you feel at home,” he said.
Kentucky isn’t too far behind.
“I feel the same way about Kentucky, but me with the Kentucky staff, I do want to get to know them a little better,” Dingle said.
Dingle tries to mold his game after one of the best linebackers in the NFL.
“I would say (Carolina’s) Luke Kuechly,” Dingle said. “How he watches film constantly and knows formations as the huddle breaks and becoming a better student of the game.”
Dingle has a few keys for choosing his college destination.
“The number one thing I’m looking for is academics,” Dingle said. “I also want to stay close to home. I want to be within an 8-10-hour drive max, so my parents can come see me.”
Last week, the NCAA Division I council voted to approve a December signing period to go along with the long-running February signing period. If it is approved by the Conference Commissioners Association in June, prospects would have the opportunity to sign in December and not have to wait until February.
“I don’t think that would be a big factor for me,” Dingle said. “I think probably by late summer, I will know where I want to go to school.”
Dingle has a busy travel schedule ahead of him in the coming weeks.
“I will be visiting Cincinnati, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Purdue and Virginia in the next month or two,” he said.
(You can follow Ryan Green on Twitter @RyanGreenGN)
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