Traveling every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights during football season allows me almost no time to watch my hometown Upper Sandusky Rams. Of course, being my own one man business, I could go to a Ram game anytime. But business is business and every weekend is business.
One player that I will miss reading about is Upper Sandusky's Tylor Pritchard. Evaluated Tylor in a scrimmage this past August. Good high school player. Tough and physical. Smart. Over the last four years, he has added strength and weight. Plays quarterback and linebacker for the Rams. An athlete playing QB, but a solid LB. Guessin 6'2 -220. Really needs to improve overall speed and change of direction. Needs a burst.
Actually first saw Tylor playing freshman football years ago. The best player on the field. The next time I saw him play was this past summer in 7on7 competition at Bucyrus. Good player, did a lot of "chirping," but competed hard. In the August scrimmage, he made plays and found ways to get it done, but needed to run better.
This past Wednesday morning some of the Upper Sandusky football players were eating at McDonald's. Since I am always there with my paper and coffee, I asked Tylor to talk for a few minutes. Wished him well in this week's game with Galion. Congratulated him on a nice career. But really wanted to know about his future plans. Impressive answers.
Tylor told me that he wanted an education above all else. Going to a Division III and more expensive school just to play football was not really what he wanted to do. Going to a MAC level school to get an education and perhaps "walk-on" the football team was the way he was leaning. That is not the answer that I usually get from possible college football prospects who come from smaller schools. Tylor's comments showed maturity to me. His comments showed "no illusions or delusions" of big time football.
Honestly, Tylor is a very good football player. Being a "walk-on" and developing physically is very possible. Learning the LB position really well is very possible. At 6'2-220, with tremendous dedication to getting better, and contributing to a MAC level program is very possible.
One thing that I forgot to mention is that Tylor carries a 3.9 GPA in the classroom. Since he scored a 29 on the ACT, that GPA looks pretty honest. With those scores, I am really glad getting an education is paramount.
Marketing high school football players has become big business. A sometimes dirty and dishonest business. A sometimes expensive business for parents. Coaches and parents need to do as much as they can to promote their son. They need to select college camps, especially the "satellite" type camps. They need to put together clear, basic highlight videos. Coaches need to reach out to colleges. Sad, but sometimes high school coaches believe that colleges should do all of the "legwork." Not in 2013. Sometimes this happens to a smaller school player. Hope this is not the case with Tylor.
Tylor represents many smaller school football players. A leader and a talent. But different than many players, he has it figured out and he "gets it." Get an education and, if possible walk on at a MAC level program, or test a BCS level school. Most of all, be realistic in your goals.
Maybe not a "Jon Diebler," but Tylor Pritchard represents the Upper Sandusky community well. A 3.9 GPA (wow) and a 29ACT (wow). Walk-ons can make it. Realistic young people just seem to be successful.