Football

Under Armour All-America safety Xavier McKinney loves to have fun

Xavier McKinney likes to have fun … from his play to his style to his hair.

And the nation’s No. 9 safety recruit can’t wait to have fun at the Under Armour All-America Game in Orlando on Jan. 1.

“I always want to have fun and I’ve always been that way,” he said. “I know when I need to turn on and when I need to just have fun. That’s something I focus on. I don’t try to get too uptight during the game. You always see me smile. I always play hard, but enjoy the game.”

The All-America fun officially began Wednesday when the Selection Tour presented by American Family Insurance came to his school, Roswell (Ga.), which is ranked No. 8 in this week’s Super 25.

McKinney donned his All-America jersey in front of his family, friends and teammates.

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“It was a great event,” he said. “It was stuff that I hadn’t gotten to do before. Just a great experience for all of us. I had fun and that’s what it’s all about.”

(Photo: Intersport)

Xavier McKinney presented his parents, Ebony Merriwether and Lee Mckinney, with the Dream Champion Award. (Photo: Intersport)

McKinney also has fun with his look, keeping his hair long on top and dying half blondish a few months ago.

“It’s just something different that I’m wanted to try out,” he said. “I haven’t seen anybody with it. There are some crazy hairdos, but this one knocked it out of the park. People have tried it, but I think it looks better on me and I’m going to keep it.

“I like standing out and not being like everyone else. I want to do my own thing.”

He also has stood out to college coaches. McKinney is still setting dates but has announced official visits to Ohio State, Georgia, Alabama, Florida and Clemson.

“I feel like things are going pretty good right now,” he said. “I’m just enjoying the process while it’s here. You only get one chance so you need to enjoy it and do the best you can.

“I’ve liked coaches getting at me and showing me attention and having great communication to develop relationships with them.”

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