June 11, 2011

Chris Carnegie excited about his Army future

Because of the post-graduate commitment, West Point candidates certainly need to look ahead. Chris Carnegie has, and he sees a lot more than football.

He sees a great education, he sees options, and he sees a career.

The athlete out of California will report to the United States Military Academy Prep School next month to embark on his 10-year voyage with the Army.

Ultimately he would like to be a neurologist. "My aunt's a brain surgeon,'' he said. "She's definitely been an influence on me. She always said to follow my dreams for whatever I want to do with my life.''

His life in the immediate future will include football, and Carnegie has been working out as well as helping others work out.

Four days a week he has been working with his former teammates at St. Mary's College High School in Berkeley, and that will expand to five days a week beginning next week. He works with the wide receivers and defensive backs.

Cornerback or Wide Receiver?

Carnegie will initially be tried at wide receiver at the prep.

He has a bit of an edge in his workouts, as former Cal-Poly standout Darrell Jones lives in the area. Jones, a second-team All-America at wide receiver in 2003, played for current Army coach Rich Ellerson at Poly.

Although Carnegie prefers defense, he is obviously learning and improving as a receiver.

"My heart is at DB, but I can easily play receiver and be fine with it. I'm just happy to be on the field,'' he said. "I don't care where I play.''

Standing 6-feet tall, he would like to play at 190 pounds. He weighs in at around 180 right now.

The kid has excellent speed as well. This past track season he was electronically timed at 11.02 in the 100 meters, 22.4 in the 200 and 49.6 in the 400.

Carnegie has been keeping in touch with several of his future classmates, and has even hung out with one a couple of times. Defensive end Jalen Rosales also lives in Berkeley. Rosales, who attended Berkeley High, met Carnegie at a track meet a year ago, well before either committed to USMAPS.

"I've been texting and talking to a lot of guys on Facebook,'' Carnegie said. "A lot of them are my platoon brothers. Actually I've been looking at highlights and tapes on YouTube, and the players look great. The people I've talked to have great mentalities and are working hard to get what needs to be done.''

He knows what needs to be done, saying about his incoming attitude, "Just put my head down and go for it.

"At first the decision to go there was quite difficult,'' he said. "As time went on, options kind of faded away. I kept looking into West Point and finding out what a great opportunity it was, the benefits and the options afterwards to get my life started. It was something I couldn't pass up.

"The five-year commitment, I guess I thought about it, but it's not really a big deal for me now. The main reason to be there is school, and then football. I'll just do the best I can.''

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