Theo John has a pretty good idea of how badly Gophers fans want him to stay home and play at the U after he graduates from Champlin Park next spring.

He hears it at school. He hears it on Twitter. One day last summer, he walked out to his car from his house and found it covered with maroon and gold décor — including streamers and stuffed Goldys —and surrounded by sidewalk-chalk pleas to stay in Minnesota for the next phase of his life.

"My parents were dying," he said. "They thought it was hilarious."

But streamers or not, John is set on living out the process, one he has put a lot of thought into as his recruitment has burgeoned.

"I'm looking for a great coach, one I know is going to be there when I'm going to be there," John said. "A coach that is going to push me, players that are going to push me, a great environment with that, people that are going to push me academically as well."

Amelia Rayno