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Chartiers Valley’s Lamont Payne Keeping Focus on Improving as Offers Roll In

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When looking ahead to the top football prospects in the Class of 2023, the duo of Laurel Highlands Rodney Gallagher and Brashear’s Ta’Mere Robinson garner most of the spotlight but they aren’t the only two players that are being pursued heavily by major programs.

Chartiers Valley’s Lamont Payne is quietly building an impressive list of offers that added another team on Monday night as he received an offer from Virginia Tech. The 6-foot-1, 170 pound cornerback has also received scholarship offers from Pitt, Penn State, West Virginia, Syracuse, Rutgers and Kent State.

Pittsburgh Sports Now spoke to Payne on Tuesday afternoon to find out how his summer is going and to get an update on his recruitment, including his thoughts on the two programs that he’s visited this summer- Pitt and Penn State.

“My recruitment is going good but honestly, most of my attention is getting on the field and getting myself better and working on things that I need to improve for the upcoming season,” said Payne. “I honestly haven’t spent a lot of time thinking about recruiting but more on my junior season. There’s a lot of time to worry about recruiting, I’m more worried about getting better.”

Courtesy Lamont Payne

“In terms of my individual improvement, I’m working on my hips and my cover technique and just doing whatever I can to be an all round sound player. I’m working out with DB (Dee Brown, Evolve/210ths). I’m also watching a lot of film of guys like Deion Sanders and trying to learn from him. Just trying to pick up anything I can to improve my game.”

While recruitment has been on the back burner, Payne tells me that he has visited Pitt and Penn State and might be scheduling some other unofficial visits before the end of the month before the high school season begins. At this point, Payne says that he has no favorites and is just doing what he can to learn about all the schools that are showing interest in him.

“I thought that a lot of these offers might come later on in the season and not this early but I’m truly blessed to be in the position that I am,” said Payne. “I just want to keep working and grinding to get more and go from there.”

“Pitt is always keeping in contact with me, sending me stuff and showing me a lot of love. It’s definitely cool to have the hometown school show you that much love. As far as Penn State, it’s the same thing, they’ve shown me a lot of love. I had a great time when I went up there and also had a great time at Pitt. Both schools have been very welcoming towards me and it’s great to be getting them from the two hometown schools.”

No visits have been planned but Payne says that if schools like Florida State, Michigan, Ohio State or LSU would show interest, he’d love to go check them out because of their history of producing quality defensive backs.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker

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