After all, with only a few days left until National Signing Day, Adams says his mind is yet to be made up. That indecision is leading to a lot of attention, which is not something the massive five-star prospect is interested in, consumed by or used to.
But the recruiters still come in droves… 12 at a time, in fact, to see and try and influence Adams.
Here is a look at the stretch run of recruiting for Adams...
The gym at Dooly County High School, where Adams has gone to school for four years, is crowded on January 17th.
A game of 21 breaks out on the basketball goal on the far end of the court with four teenagers playing as hard as possible for those dressed in pants and some playing only in socks. Underneath the basket sits Dooly County coach Jimmy Hughes, Adams and a slew of coaches from a who’s who of college football powers.
Adams watches the game of 21. The coaches just watch Adams. Hughes seemingly just wants the day to end – or at least not have the coaches drive the reclusive Adams crazy. Hughes, armed with his Droid, is trying to direct traffic as best possible between the students, Adams and the coaches.
He is mildly successful, but college coaches are persistent.
Slowly coaches from Clemson, Auburn, Georgia and Alabama roll through the gym doors. Each coach, huddled as close to Adams as possible without making it seem they were huddled close to him, are navigating their path on how to talk to Adams, to get one-on-one time with him, without other coaches or students getting in the way.
Grabbing a 30-second conversation with the giant 17-year old must have been considered a giant win in the moment, because that’s about all the coaches were able to get. One has to think that any other high school student might have buckled under the pressure of speaking to so many coaches from big-time schools, but Adams kept his composure – and kept trying to figure out how to leave.
The attention from coaches and media began to take a toll on Adams and his cell phone. Adams’ phone vibrated regularly during a photo shoot late in the afternoon. Finally one slightly-louder vibration came from the phone. Adams said he knew exactly what that signaled.
“That could mean one of two things,” Adams said. “Either my phone died, or that was another coach calling me.”
The event summed up not only Adams’ school day, but his recruiting experience in general. Everyone is after Adams, but he can’t decide whom to follow.
“I still don’t know where I want to go,” Adams said. “And no one believes me when I tell them that.”
One week later, Adams’ 1995 Acura Legend pulled into the Dooly County High parking lot around four in the afternoon. Adams exited the car with three of his friends who were catching a ride back to the school for basketball practice. Adams had a large grin on his face. Adams had a lot of homework to finish, he claimed, but followed that up by saying he had an hour to hang out. He insisted on going to Cordele to eat at Chik-fil-A, so a trip to the newly-opened restaurant was in order. After all, you don’t argue restaurant selection with a 300-pounder and often win.
On the ride over, Adams talked about the genres of music he enjoyed most. It consisted of mostly hip-hop and rap, and Adams even chimed in on a verse of a 2 Chainz song as it blared through the car’s speakers.
“Pull up to the scene with my ceiling missing,” Adams vocalized during the chorus of 2 Chainz’s latest single, I’m Different.
Adams wasn’t shy to harmonize with the latest rap songs. He hummed along with nearly every song played on Albany’s WJIZ 96.3 FM. However, his singing halted immediately upon his arrival at Chik-fil-A. At that point, Adams was focused solely on his next meal.
Not too long after stepping into the fast food franchise the owner of the Chick-fil-A approached the prospect.
“Is that Montravius Adams,” she asked. “Can I have a picture with him?”
Adams is no stranger to pictures – they are one of the few things he seems to enjoy without hesitation. Adams posed with the owner for a few pictures followed by a snapshot with the restaurant’s mascot, the Chik-fil-A cow.
Adams’ smile was noticeable as he whirled around inside the restaurant and chatted with the staffers there. He liked it there. He was having fun away from the madness. No one at Chik-fil-A wanted anything from him. They wanted a picture with Montravius – not the next four years of his life.
As Adams put the finishing touches on his chicken tenders and Hi-C fruit punch, a mother and her child approached the defensive tackle for a picture. The mother fought hard to get her little girl to stop sobbing at the sight of the camera, and eventually the two were able to get a picture with Adams.
“Smile honey,” the mother said to her daughter. “This man might play for Georgia one day.”
Adams smiled at the woman’s comment. She looked at Adams as if she was waiting for a verbal commitment herself. Adams just continued to smile and replied the only way he knew to, vaguely.
“I’m considering it ma’am,” Adams said.
Maybe they did want the next four years of his life after all.
Adams laughed continuously after the meal was finished and the photo opportunities were over.
“I think I’ll have to come to this Chik-fil-A more often,” Adams said with a smile. “Those people were nice.”
Adams spoke of Athens briefly during the meal, but quickly changed the subject to video games. Adams boasted about his Heisman-level abilities at EA Sports’ NCAA Football 13 on his Playstation 3.
“It doesn’t matter who you play with,” Adams said. “You’re going to lose.”
As it turns out he wasn’t exaggerating.
Adams turned the gaming console on, picked up two controllers and proceeded to put on a five-star performance. The team he chose to play with wasn’t Georgia, Auburn, Clemson or even Alabama. Instead, Adams chose to play with 2013 National Championship runner-up Notre Dame.
“I’m going to sack the quarterback with (Manti) Te’o the whole game,” Adams said without cracking a smile… a touch of evil glimmering in his eye.
Again, Adams wasn’t exaggerating. Te’o’s final sack count in the game would have made Michael Strahan cringe. Adams must have logged at least ten sacks with the former Heisman finalist – it was a nightmare. One has to wonder if Adams aspires to be invited to New York one day, too, but can only manifest that fantasy with a joystick rather than his body right now.
With another week gone and Signing Day that much closer, Adams stood on the gym floor at Dooly County with his usual grin. He was decked out in his Under Armor All-American clothing and a newfound swagger yet to be seen in the senior that month.
Perhaps that attitude was fueled by his post-school workouts at Impact Sports and Fitness facility in Cordele. Adams had recently started a new workout with one of the facility’s trainers in hopes to adapt his regimen to that of a college athlete.
The workout started with a warm-up consisting of jumping jacks and stretching, but quickly upgraded to push-ups, pull-ups and combine training. The workout itself wasn’t nearly as memorable for Adams as what followed. After Adams’ workout, he went to get a protein shake in the lobby where he was met by another interested fan.
Adams was sitting in one of the lobby chairs when the trainer approached him holding an English bulldog. The bulldog belonged to one of the gym’s members, but the trainer handed it to Adams to hold.
Adams reluctantly held the dog for a few minutes, but said he wasn’t sure if he should be handling the dog with such admiration.
“Is this my commitment?” Adams asked the trainer with a smile.
The trainer commented on how the picture should be uploaded to social media, but Adams’ body language didn’t seem to agree – he didn’t comment.
After the workout Adams went back to his house where he proceeded to watch television. He scrolled through the channels for a few minutes before he finally decided on 50 First Dates starring Adam Sandler.
Adams was tired, and he needed some rest. He was about to fall asleep when he mentioned his upcoming visit to Auburn. Adams said he liked Auburn’s campus, and he had been there a few times before. However, Adams’ positive remarks about Auburn didn’t necessarily outweigh the ones he made about Georgia.
“I liked Athens,” Adams said. “I got to hang out with some of my good friends Shaquille (Wiggins) and Tray (Matthews).”
The decision, however, is coming very soon for Adams. At 9:45 on Signing Day he will have to make his decision final. Maybe then what his smiles actually mean will make more clearer sense.