As one of the top players at his position, defensive end Darian Roseboro headlines a talent-rich class of juniors in the state of North Carolina. At 6'5" and 265 lbs., Roseboro already has the physical prowess to compete with collegiate offensive tackles in the trenches after having his way with opponents at the high school level last season. With a polished arsenal of pass moves that compliment his bull rush, Roseboro abused high school lineman on the way to setting the Lincolnton High School sack record in 2013.
"I think it went pretty well," said Roseboro. "I got a lot more offers that came in and I improved on being more consistent this year than in the past two years. We went a lot farther as a team as well, making it to the fourth round in the playoffs."
Finishing with a 9-6 record, Lincolnton High School reached the quarterfinals of the North Carolina 2A playoffs. What makes this playoff run even more impressive is that it capped off a grueling 11 game regular season for the Lincolnton Wolves. The sum of their regular season and post-season games adds up to 15 games, which is more than most college teams play.
This extensive season gave colleges a lot of film to pore over, and the results have been overwhelmingly positive thus far. Roseboro checks in as a composite four-star according to the 247sports rankings, nestled comfortably within the top 10 defensive ends nation-wide. Darian has interest from ACC, SEC and Big Ten teams in pursuit of his services and highlighted which offers stand out to him at the moment.
"South Carolina, Tennessee, UNC, Ohio State, Michigan and I'm waiting for more schools to offer me, said Roseboro."
As the centerpiece of a Wolves defense that gave up just over 20 points per game om average (20.4), Roseboro was a disruptive force coming off the edge all season. After an impressive sophomore campaign earned him MaxPreps All-American honors for his class, Roseboro followed up with an equally dominant junior year. Lining up at both weak-side and strong-side defensive end, Roseboro racked up 125 tackles, 21 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, seven pass break-ups and five forced fumbles. His disruptive presence did not come without countless hours of work, though, and Darian knows just when he put himself on this track for greatness.
"It really came down to working with my dad a lot," said Roseboro. "He would really push me during the summer in two-a-days when I was working out three times a day. He showed me that I need to enjoy the game as much as I can."
In addition to the strong work ethic that blossomed under his father's guidance, Roseboro was instructed on how to approach football on a snap-by-snap basis. The best defensive lineman can impact a play whether they are within arms reach of the football or not, and Roseboro strives to become one of those menacing talents.
"You gotta get the momentum," said Roseboro. "On the football field when you're going against a team with a real strong running game, you need to disrupt their game plan and force them to throw the ball. Attacking the offensive tackle and punishing them is very important. Even if they run away from you, it's important to punish them in some way."
With plenty of schools interested in landing a commitment from a top 10 defensive end with versatility, strength and work ethic to match, Darian has had time to figure out the reverse- what he is looking for in a school. This criteria is important to the North Carolina native and will set the stage for his eventual decision.
"I would do anything for the team, but I'm getting offers at defensive end," said Roseboro. "I can play either strong side or weak side, whichever is a greater need. Distance isn't a huge factor for me. I want to be somewhere that I feel comfortable. I want to be somewhere that I can come in and play and make a difference. I plan on double majoring when I get to college and I want to double major in Law Justice and Sports Medicine."
As one of the schools in contention for the academically and athletically-driven Roseboro, the University of Michigan provides an attractive combination of assets for prospective students. The Wolverines also have the advantage of Roy Manning as their ace recruiter.
"I've built up a really good relationship with coach Manning," said Roseboro. "We don't even really talk about football. I just talk about whatever with Manning. One time he asked me for my Xbox Gamertag so we can play Xbox with each other. I would take him down all day, it's pretty serious."
This friendship, when coupled with the athletic and academic program, has made Michigan a serious contender for Roseboro at this time. Darian plans to visit Ann Arbor in the Spring, and at the time he looks to learn more about the storied program that has captivated him thus far.
"I'm going to get there in the Spring and take a visit," said Roseboro. "I really like Michigan. They have a lot of tradition and a great atmosphere. They have produced some great players and they get some big time recruits."
Michigan is just one school that Roseboro is planning on visiting, though, as his schedule looks to be packed full of stops across the country. He will probably take visits up until his senior season begins, which is when a decision can be expected.
"I want to make another visit to Michigan and another visit to Ohio State," said Roseboro. "Then I'm going to take another to North Carolina and South Carolina. Hopefully I can make it back to UCLA as well. I'm going to enroll early in college so I'm planning on committing at the beginning of my senior season."
With several 2015 offers going out on the defensive side of the ball lately, Michigan is expanding their scope at the defensive end position. The Wolverines, however, are in good position for Roseboro at this point and will look to make a big impact when hosting Darian for a visit.