Fate wasn’t on the side of the Fighting Indians this year after their 20-3 loss to Treasure Coast High School. However, those in need of a quick football fix — look no further. VBHS Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator Pete DeLuke has provided a candid view into the college recruiting process for some of the team’s seniors and juniors. Seniors
Pat Baker, kicker — There are two schools that want Baker to come to their school as a preferred walk-on. Illinois State and North Carolina are encouraging Baker to come out for football in the fall. The school would have the option within the next year or two to give him a scholarship. Georgia State, which is fielding a team for the first time next year, is coming to watch Baker kick during a private workout during the first week of December. He’s also attending two kicking camps; including Brandon Korblue’s fall 2009 Kicking Challenge on Dec. 19.
Quincy Dudley, various positions — Lots of colleges have shown interest in Dudley, but he doesn’t have an offer yet. He’s received multiple letters from Iowa State showing interest in him as a defensive end or outside linebacker. DeLuke thinks Dudley may have to go to a junior college to get noticed, as he didn’t garner attention until late in the recruiting process. Dudley has the speed and size (6-foot-1, 215 pounds) to play wide receiver at the college level, so chances are that he will have options.
Travonte’ Boles, defensive tackle — While most of the recognition he received in high school was as an offensive lineman, all of the colleges recruiting Boles want him at defensive tackle. At 6-foot, 310 pounds, Boles has the size and quickness schools look for at that position. Three of the top offers Boles is considering have come from Louisiana Tech, Georgia State, and Miami of Ohio. There are a host of other schools that have either offered Boles a scholarship or have talked to him about an offer. Iowa State is a dark horse, as they have continued to talk to Boles for several months. To be sure, the team captain will be playing somewhere next fall.
Just in case anyone wants to announce the demise of the Fighting Indians, here’s a newsflash: The junior class is deep and talented. Coach DeLuke gave us his insight into where next year’s seniors could end up.
Marcus Jackson, offensive line — The 6-foot-4, 320-pound giant verbally committed to Miami in the summer at their camp. Jackson has been a hot commodity ever since, receiving mail from Michigan, Georgia, Colorado State, Georgia Tech, and a host of other major schools. Jackson, projected as a guard at the college level, has no visits planned as of now. He will keep stacking his mail through the next year while colleges fight with each other over his services.
Larry Franklin, free safety — After a string of violent hits on opposing receivers late this year, Franklin will be getting some mail very soon. DeLuke says the star safety will go to a few combines (where colleges assess talent of high school athletes). So far, the 6-foot-1, 195-pound Franklin has drawn the attention of Colorado State.
Cody Horstman, defensive lineman — Last year Cody was seventh in state in discus as just a sophomore. At 6-foot-3, 235 pounds, he’s got the frame to put on 40 more pounds and keep his speed. He played defensive end this year, but could play defensive tackle because he’s so strong. Iowa State wants Cody for football, while LSU and FSU want him for track. Horstman’s list of suitors will probably at least triple by the end of summer.
David Dixson, defensive end — Arguably the most dynamic athlete VBHS has on defense, Dixson combined with Horstman to give the Fighting Indians one of the best sets of defensive ends in the state. Dixson is has a devastating combination of size and strength at 6-foot-3 220 pounds. He attended some camps last year and got the attention of both Colorado State and Colorado. Like his buddy Horstman, Dixson will be getting a lot more mail from schools over the next several months.
Dion Holmes, strong safety — Holmes played with a chip on his shoulder all year, but only has the interest of Iowa State as of right now. Holmes, the team’s leading tackler, will put some more mass on his 5-foot-10, 185-pound frame before his senior year. He has the athletic ability to play at the highest level in college.
Jormonte Hunter, running back — At 5-foot-8, 180 pounds, Hunter doesn’t sound like much on paper. Reality is, though, that he’s the best running back VBHS has had in a number of years. While Hunter had nearly 1,100 yards and 16 TDs, judging him by pure numbers doesn’t do him justice. Wisconsin noticed him last year as a sophomore, and have followed him ever since. Translation: expect a scholarship offer soon. Cincinnati has sent Hunter a lot of mail as well.
Antone Taylor, running back — DeLuke thinks Taylor will get a lot of attention from schools after the summer. “Most of the guys that are getting looks are guys who were at combines,” said DeLuke. “The combines do help. Antone is going to put on some weight and grow into his body over the next year.” Taylor, at 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, is still growing and has great cutback ability that colleges look for in a running back.
Jack Moore, tight end — The blocking tight end for the Fighting Indians is getting mail from Ivy League schools showing interest in his football skills. At 6-foot-3, 230 he’s already a great blocker, and played some tackle for VBHS this year.