"We are really excited about it," added Carlos' father and head coach, Carlos Thompson Sr. "We have a lot of relatives who are going to be in San Antonio. Pretty much our whole family is going to be down there (laugh). We can't wait to get there on the 7th (of January) and watch him compete against the country's best players."
Carlos competed against Mississippi's and Alabama's best a couple of weeks back. Carlos not only collected a couple of sacks for the Magnolia squad; he was constantly in Alabama's backfield.
"We hope he continues to play the way he played in that (MS/AL) game. We want him to pick up from where he left off down in Mobile. I thought he played an excellent game. He had 5 QB hurries in that game, a couple of sacks, and 7 solo tackles. We were all interested to see how he was going to play against the next level of competition. I had a sneaky feeling how he was going to play, but I think it solidified our beliefs, especially Carlos'. He really has no clue about how good he can be."
Thompson set up two visits in January to MSU (1/14) and OM (1/21). Have any additional official visits been set up since the Dead Period started?
"Those are the only two. A lot of the other schools are trying to squeeze in a visit on one of those two weekends. The first weekend of the month, obviously, Carlos will be playing in the Army game. Those next two weekends he is scheduled for MSU and Ole Miss. I doubt he will take one on the last weekend of January (28-30), but we are not certain about that just yet."
Which schools are trying to get him in for that last weekend?
"North Carolina has really been picking it up a lot lately. They really want him to come in for a visit. They said they were going to be down there for the Army game and will meet with us again. Baylor obviously wants to try and get him in there for a visit too. They really wanted him to come in on the 14th or 21st, but we had already committed to visit MSU and Ole Miss on those weekends."
It is no surprise that these four schools are the ones that came in for home visits the week leading up to the dead period.
"They all sent their coaches to our house the week before last. Everybody is just trying to wind things down, see where we are at right now."
Is it fair to say that the two Mississippi schools are the main colleges in contention?
"Some what, but we always keep our options open until the end. We try and stay open minded, in terms of recruiting, and see how things shape up with them. There are lot of coaches leaving, or rumored to be leaving, so we are trying to sort through all of that. I do not think this is going to go to Signing Day. After the Army game we will set down and talk about it."
Carlos had originally planned to take his official visits before making a commitment. Is there now a chance he will commit before the visit process begins?
"I think it could happen if he feels strong about it. We are going to sit down and talk about it as soon as we get back. There is a real possibility he could be making a decision shortly after that. I think he is starting to get that feeling on where he wants to be."
Would he still take in his official visits to the competing schools if he committed before the official visits took place?
"He probably would, but that all depends on how the coaches he commits to feels about that. If he goes ahead and commits after the Army game; we will get it over with and make a decision if he is going to take any visits."
What will be the main factors in his final decision?
"Really, it is just the academic setting and which school gives him the best opportunity to hit the field early on, if not the first year, at least the second year. We want him to have a chance to play early and have an opportunity to make an impact for their defensive line. The number of people at his position is really important, as is their academic setting."
Ole Miss and MSU both have commitments who are actively trying to persuade Thompson into joining their recruiting class.
"They do (laugh), both State and Ole Miss. You have those two committed to Ole Miss from Madison Central, DL Bryon Bennett and DL Carlton Martin. Carlos is good buddies with those guys. They shared a room down there in Mobile and really enjoyed each other. Bennett calls over here all of the time (laugh). And of course you have DL Kaleb Eulls who is committed to MSU trying to do the same thing. Carlos really likes Kaleb too. He calls over here a bunch too. And MSU also has another commitment from Hattiesburg who calls over here. His name is Jay Hughes. He just started calling over here recently."
Cartlon Martin and Bryon Bennett spoke about how the three of them had talked about staying together on the next level. Does Carlos talk about that much?
"Yes, he talks to me all of the time about it (laugh), but we still have to see what he is going to do, but yea we have been talking about that all of the time. They think they can become a dominant force at Ole Miss if they were all to go together. I think it is attractive for those kids because Ole Miss is losing their whole rotation at end and tackle after next season. There are some opportunities that will come open for all three of them."
Yancy Porter is the Recruiting Manager for the State of Mississippi and he can be reached at email@example.com