Can Kragthorpe reassure Dale Martin?

Dale Martin

Dale Martin, a four-star Louisville commit, still hasn't met new Cardinals coach Steve Kragthorpe. With signing day rapidly approaching, the 5-11, 200-pound will finally get his chance to sit down with Kragthorpe later this week. Can Kragthorpe lock up Martin for Louisville? Or will the star running back reconsider his options?

Dale Martin, a four-star running back from Bolingbrook, Illinois, can't wait to sit down with Steve Kragthorpe and get to know the new Louisville coach. A Louisville commit, Martin pledged to the Cardinals before Bobby Petrino left for the Atlanta Falcons, and still hasn't met Kragthorpe, the coach he could play for next season.

Kragthorpe was scheduled to travel to Illinois last week, but had to reschedule and planned to visit with Martin and his family Sunday. But bad weather in the Chicago area put those plans on hold, too. Weather permitting, Kragthorpe will finally meet the 5-11, 200-pound standout Thursday evening.

"I was a little disappointed that he couldn't make it up here last week because signing day is rapidly approaching and I'd like to get to know him before I make my final decision," Martin said. "But I understand the weather was bad and I can't hold that against him.

With Martin's commitment to Louisville seemingly up in the air, other schools have tried to make late recruiting pitches. Iowa came in last week to let Martin know they still want him. Minnesota, Michigan State and California are also angling for official visits. Louisville, however, still sits in the driver's seat.

"Right now I'm not planning on de-committing with Louisville," said Martin. "Thursday's meeting with Coach Kragthorpe will determine a lot for me. If it goes well and I feel comfortable and like the coach, I'll go to Louisville. If not, I might reconsider my options. I haven't set up any other visits yet, but I might set one up with Cal."

Martin said he's been in contact with the Louisville coaches and has spoken with Kragthorpe over the phone "a couple times."

"He seems a little more laid back than Petrino and he seems like a good guy," Martin said. "He was telling me that a lot of the offense will stay the same."

If Kragthorpe comes though Thursday night, the Cardinals will likely lock up one of the nation's outstanding running backs.

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