Clearly coming off a winning season and a bowl victory legitimizes all the recruiting talk from the staff. It makes it much easier for the coaching staff to engage in conversations with prospects and obviously those same recruits are now more receptive to what Ellerson and the staff have to say.
And once that are able to connect/confirm through their official visit with what has been heard via school and/or home visits, along with email, text or phone chatter, it has often turned into a slam dunk verbal commitment for the Black Knights.
To steal the phrase from the Kevin Costner movie Field of Dreams
"If you build it, he will come" continues to seem very appropriate when it comes to the Army football program.
And if there is any true measurement of current status of the program versus just two years ago, one just has to look at some of the head to head recruiting battles against arch rival Navy. Although both academies will have their share of recruiting victories, to date the Army staff can only smile knowing that just yesterday they pulled in elusive running back Jared Rogers, and on the horizon to visit is athlete Jimmy Britton who is a Navy commit, but actually a lean towards the Black Knights.
But let's turn our focus on the newest member of Army's 2011 recruiting class, Mr. Rogers.
Despite his, the 5-foot-9, 175 pound frame, Rogers can bring it and this was confirmed by Tensey Pricer of PelicanPreps.com, who has seen Rogers on several occasions this past season. "He is incredibly elusive, one of the best in that category that I have seen in some time. He has tremendous change-of-direction ability. He has also been tremendously productive against a pretty competitive schedule. He plays for a Class 2A school, but they compete in one of the most competitive leagues in the state in that class."
Rogers has outstanding quickness wise, although not a pure speedster, but out of his breaks and making the cuts, he makes people miss.
Two days after making his visit to West Point, the product out of Baton Rouge (LA) Episcopal High School, made it clear where he loyalty now lies.
"I told Coach Coaxum this morning that I was in and he was excited
he said he was going to let Coach Ellerson know about my decision," Rogers said yesterday evening.
The question surrounding Rogers commitment is will he take his scheduled visits to Central Arkansas, but more importantly, will he visit Navy this upcoming weekend?
"I have Navy and Central Arkansas to visit
I was already scheduled to visit Navy this weekend and I'm leaving Friday," shared Rogers, who admits that he is somewhat torn between his verbal to the Black Knights and his previously scheduled official visit to the Naval Academy.
"I'm committed to Army and I know that's where I want to go. But I spoke to the Navy coach today and told him that I was going to go on my visit."
However, later that evening, the Louisiana product reached back to GBK and made it clear where he will be attending college.
"I just decided that I'm not going to take the Navy visit since I'm committed to Army
I am a Black Knight."
During his visit, the elusive back was hosted by defensive lineman Jarrett Mackey. "He was pretty cool and anything I needed to have answered, he didn't shun away from and was open with me. He told me about all the things that they do and he may be feel that I fit into that environment," Rogers said.
"Dinner that evening at Kimsely Center was awesome. I had a chance to see the weight facilities and the best I have seen so far."
In addition to his time with Mackey, his recruiter, Tony Coaxum and the other prospects that were on hand, Rogers had an opportunity to chat with Head Coach Rich Ellerson.
"I also had a chance to speak to Coach Ellerson as well," he shared. "He told me they were going to pressure me to commit while I was there, but go home and think about it. The overall experience was great and they did a great job in impressing the recruits.
I just decided that I'm not going to take the Navy visit since I'm committed to Army
I am a Black Knight.
- Running back, Jared Rogers
Rogers, who was named All District and All State Honor Mention rushed for 1,500 yards this season, along with 21 touchdowns, 231 receiving yards and punt & kickoff return for touchdowns will join an impressive group of players who will be making their way this summer to the USMAPS.
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