NC State football signees T.J. Graham and Tobias Palmer had big days on the track yesterday as they…
Graham Ready to Enroll
This has been a big week for T.J. Graham. He will graduate this weekend after completing his classes at Raleigh (NC) Wakefield High School, and Graham also received the news that he is all set academically to enroll at NC State. "I'm happy... I'm real happy that I'm all set to go to [NC] State," said Graham. "As soon as I got my final transcript on Monday I took a visit over to Carter-Finley and met with the State coaches. "We had set some standards on what I needed to make this final [term] and I finished way above that... [laughing] I could probably give my teammates some points if they needed them. I had probably my best year since being in high school. My goal was to make the A-B Honor Roll, but I just missed it by two points because I got a C in Spanish II. I did get an A in a honors class, another A, and I also got a B." "We submitted all my paperwork to the NCAA Clearinghouse, and I'm going to be good to go," added Graham. "I know my guidance counselor and the coaches went all over the paperwork, and they said that everything is all set for me." "That's what I plan on doing... wide receiver and returner." A wide receiver signee for the Wolfpack, the 6-foot, 180-pounder was rated a three-star prospect and the No. 140 wide receiver in the nation by Scout.com. He is expected to come in and compete for playing time at the wide receiver position and could see time as a true freshman on special teams. "The coaches are saying I'll have a chance to come in and play, especially returning kicks," said Graham. "That's what I plan on doing... wide receiver and returner. They've talked to me about being a kick returner right away. Coach Bible has been comparing me to Ted Ginn... that's how they want to use me." On the gridiron, Graham makes his mark with his speed and ability to make defenders miss. He is one of the fastest football players in the country and has proven his speed time-and-time again on the track. Graham has been running track this spring and is about to complete one of the best prep track careers in the state. He was the indoor state champion in the 55-meter dash and the 300-meter dash, and Graham is the national champion in in the indoor 200 meters. At the recent outdoor 4A state championships, Graham won the 100-meter dash with a time of 10.44, setting a new 4-A state record in the event. He also won the 200-meter dash with a time of 20.82. Over the weekend, Graham ran in the prestigious Golden West Invitational. One of the nation's top track and field events, the Adidas Golden West Invitational debuted in 1960 as the first national prep meet since the early 1930s. It is by far the longest-running postseason high school meet, and past participants of the Golden West have represented the United States in every Olympic Games since 1964. One-hundred forty-four slots on the American Olympic teams have been filled by adidas GWI alums. They have won 70 medals, 39 of them gold. Participating in the 100 and 200-meter dashes, Graham finished second and first respectively. His 100-meter time of 10.21 seconds was the third-fastest time ever recorded in the event, and his 21.04 was nearly .2 better than the second-place finisher. "I was proud of how I did in the Golden West," said Graham. "Even though I finished second, I was good with my 100 time because it was the third-fastest time they've ever had in the Golden West. That meet has been around for a lot of years too. "I'm about done with track. Next weekend I'll be at the NIKE outdoors where I can hopefully be a national champion. I'm the top returning senior in the 100 and 200. I finished third and sixth last year in those two events and I'm the top returning runner so I should do good." Graham has made a name for himself on the track, but he's looking to do the same in college while playing football for the Wolfpack. Will he run track at NC State? "We've talked about it, and I said I'll go with the flow," said Graham. "If I can handle school, track, and football, then I'll do it. But, I'm at State to play football. That's what I'm going there to do... that and school. I like running track, and if I can do it all I will, but I don't want to miss spring practice either." "If I can handle school, track, and football, then I'll do it." Like the rest of the incoming class, Graham will officially enroll for the second summer session on July 6th. Scouting Report #1: "Watching Graham, the first thing that jumps out is just how fluid he is in his movement. His footwork is not great for a wide receiver, but watching his body react to the ball, there is no question he is an elite athlete who is destined to have college coaches figuring out how to get the ball in his hands. "As a slot receiver, he has a better matchup at the high school level with what is probably a linebacker, safety, or second-level cornerback in man and in zone the slot finds a soft spot much easier. "As a football player, I am still trying to find that elite burst for a player with track speed like Graham has. He is without a doubt a burner, but he is not blowing anybody away with quick twitch moves with his feet. Graham is a very long strider with high knees, probably best suited for one- and two-move routes. "He plays bigger than 6-0 with good leaping ability and, again, a natural adjustment on the ball. Still, not going to be a matchup problem against many corners height-wise. "I love his play as a quarterback, where he shows a lot of lower-body strength, balance, and a little more quickness in decision-making in the open field." -- Scout.com Recruiting Analyst Miller Safrit Scouting Report #2: "Wakefield (NC) High School will look to get creative in 2007 to ensure their star player, TJ Graham, touches the ball as much as possible. "At 6-0, 180 pounds, Graham has a lean, muscular frame but his calling card is speed. His long strides allow him to effortlessly out-run opposing defensive backs and his production is limited only by his team's ability to get him the ball. "Graham has tremendous body control and shows solid concentration. Because of his speed, tackling him can be a handful for defenders who oftentimes end up clutching at air." -- Recruiting Analyst Steve Williams Jr. Film: WR #6 T.J. Graham - Video 1 - Jr. Film: WR #6 T.J. Graham - Video 2 - Jr. Film: WR #6 T.J. Graham - Video 3 - NOTE: Make sure you have the latest version of Adobe Flash Player. 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