Don’t let Nick Waisome’s miniature size fool you. He can play.
At 5-foot-10, 171 pounds, the Groveland South Lake cornerback has put himself in this year’s league of extraordinary corners.
What he lacks in size, he makes up with his tremendous speed (he’s been clocked at running a 4.44 in the 40) and excellent cover skills. He’s not afraid to go up against bigger opponents, as he dealt with Florida commit and Jacksonville University Christian tight end A.C. Leonard at Friday Night Lights.
Though Leonard got the best of him in the end, Waisome held his own with the 6-foot-2, 232-pounder until Leonard’s reach proved to be a bit too much for Waisome to handle.
“Standing next to Cornelius Ingram, he’s about the same size,” Waisome said of Leonard. “He’s phenomenal. He’s going to be great. He’s definitely going to make it to the next level.”
Waisome, whom Rivals.com rates as the nation’s seventh-best corner prospect, traveled to Gainesville last week not only to compete in one of the most popular annual summer camps, but he wanted to interact with Florida’s coaches more. With relationships within a college program being one of his top priorities in where he makes his decision, Waisome said he wanted to come back and get some more personal time with the Gator coaches.
After a few hours in town, Waisome said the relationships with head coach Urban Meyer and defensive coordinator/cornerbacks coach Teryl Austin are much stronger and that his trip to Gainesville will “definitely” be his last unofficial visit of the summer.
Creating a substantial relationship with Austin has been priority for Waisome. Ever since former cornerbacks coach Vance Bedford left with former defensive coordinator Charlie Strong for Louisville, Waisome has attempted to create the same strong bond with Austin as he had with Bedford. It took some time, but Waisome said he feels as close to Austin and that he’s “a guy that can take (the defense) to the next level.”
Waisome is scheduled to verbally commit to a school in August during a live broadcast on ESPNU. His final five schools are Florida, FSU, Georgia, LSU and South Carolina, with Florida and FSU the perceived leaders.
Waisome said of Florida: “That’s a lock-down team,” he said. “They’ve showed great success and their a great team overall on defense and that’s something I think I have also.”
On FSU: “They’re champions and they’re going to continue the legacy.”
After Waisome competed at FNL he drove down with this brother to Orlando for the 2010 Gridiron Kings 7-on-7 tournament, where he returned an interception 80 yards for a touchdown and was a part of the Southeast team, who claimed the tournament title.
While most prospects concern themselves with early playing time in college, Waisome said he hasn’t worried about that because he’s confident he can go into a program and not only compete but contribute immediately.
“Playing time for a lot of guys is a big thing,” he said. “For me, I feel like if I get in the position to start or to at least show my skills I’ll be able to take the starting position.”