"I'm doing my visits now, and I went up to NC State this past weekend," said Mattes. "I just really enjoyed the visit... it was great. They impressed me a lot. I was surprised at some of the things I was able to experience, and I was really impressed with coach Tom O'Brien and coach Horton."
Mattes attended the Wolfpack's thrilling 31-27 victory over North Carolina, where he met some other recruits and took in the atmosphere. He stated that experience was the highlight of the visit.
"The game was definitely the highlight for me," he said. "It was a great game to be at. State was playing their rival in North Carolina and at first they were blowing them out but after a couple of interceptions North Carolina was right back in it. UNC was going in for a last-second touchdown and State stopped them on the final play.
"I've now been to three games at NC State this season and that was as loud as any game I've ever heard. On that final drive, the whole place was going crazy."
"I got to speak with Mike Glennon at the game, and and I knew Andrew Wallace from some other visits," added Mattes. "Mike Glennon is a pretty tall quarterback... he's like 6'7. I'm used to looking down at quarterbacks so that was a little different. When I talked with coach O'Brien he was telling me how good Glennon is. He was talking about how he went to one of the big camps and was the #2 quarterback out of all the quarterbacks that were there."
On his official visit Mattes was able to spend time with the rest of the Wolfpack players and the win over North Carolina set the tone for a fun Saturday night.
"The game set off the whole night for everybody," said Mattes. "It just made it crazy the rest of the night because everyone was so pumped up. I got to hang out a lot with the players that night and I really liked being over at the College Inn... the place where all the athletes stay. I had a great time there."
One positive for NC State could be the relationship Ron Mattes, R.J.'s father, has with NC State head coach Tom O'Brien. O'Brien coached the elder Mattes while he played offensive line at Virginia, and R.J. hears from his father what it would be like to play for O'Brien.
'My dad always said it is my decision, but I don't think he'd mind at all if I went to NC State. He talks about how coach O'Brien is a straight guy and he's going to treat you fair. He's going to be disciplined and striaghtforward but he's going to get the best out of you. He said he was a great coach to play for."
Mattes also mentioned the ability of O'Brien and offensive line coach Don Horton to put offensive linemen into the NFL. While at Boston College, the Eagles routinely had linemen drafted into the league.
"The first time I went up to State they had a sheet with all of the players over just the past two or three years that were in the NFL," he said. "It was a long list... it was real impressive. It's just amazing how they can put linemen into the NFL like it's nothing. That's a goal for me."
Next up for Mattes is a trip to Virginia over Thanksgiving weekend when they square off against Virginia Tech. He has North Carolina scheduled for December 1st and stated that he believes his visit to Clemson will be on January 11th. His other finalist, South Carolina, remains in the mix but his December 8th visit has to be rescheduled because Mattes will be playing in the Shrine Bowl.
"Yes sir, it's still those five schools, and I'm going to take all five visits," he said. "All of them have said they are recruiting me exclusively as a left tackle."