Signee Spotlight: Elijah St. Hilaire
"Academics were always my number one priority," said Elijah St. Hilaire on his decision. "Army gave me the opportunity to play football at the Division 1 level surrounded by great people and receive a quality education.
"Coach (Tucker) Waugh and I had a really tight connection. He had been recruiting me ever since the spring of my junior year. I know that West Point is going have me well prepared for life after football."
St. Hilaire switched from wide receiver to running back for his senior season and rushed for more than 1,000 yards with 16 touchdowns. He was named First Team All-North Jersey, First Team All-Bergen County, and the winner of New Jersey's Maxwell Award winner for academics, football performance and community service.
"I'm coming in as a slot back or wide receiver," St. Hilaire said. "As a freshman, I think my best shot at playing time will be on special teams as a kick returner.
"Last season, Army led the nation in rushing but wants to do more in the passing game. What I lack in size, I feel like I make up for in speed and agility. I use my hands well to get off the defender and make good cuts in my route running."
When St. Hilaire took his official visit to West Point the weekend of January 16th his father was unable to join him. Recently, he made a trip with his father to show him what the Academy is all about.
"When you visit a regular campus you can see pretty much everything in one weekend," St. Hilaire said. "There's so much more to learn about at West Point. I took my Dad up, and he saw the campus and learned more about the history. He loved it. I was up there again last weekend to watch practice, and I'll be there again next weekend."
It's only a 45 mile trip from Palisades Park to West Point, but with New York area traffic that drive can take quite a bit longer. While he's able to go more often than most of the other recruits, St. Hilaire is getting to know most of them via social networking.
"I set up a group on Facebook for the Army Class of 2012," said St. Hilaire. "I was just on last night speaking to Stephen Fraser, a sophomore running back, so I'm getting to know players who are already there too.
"My parents were on edge at first about the military, but it's something I wanted to do for a long time. My Aunt was in the military and talked to me about the brotherhood and how the people you serve with become like family and like with any family the bond is forever."
St. Hilaire has an older sister and younger two brothers. He thinks junior brother Malik, a sophomore at Palisades Park and captain of the J.V. squad, will become a big-time recruit. St. Hilaire's mother is of Belizean decent. His uncle, Albert Leslie, played for the Belize National Basketball team in the Olympics.
St. Hilaire says his other offers came from Colorado State, Akron, Columbia, Bryant, Towson, Stony Brook, and St. Francis (PA). He will go into the Academy directly on July 2nd. Follow @ArmySports
ArmySports.com Top Stories
Head to Head: Army at BuffaloAfter a long trip southwest to take on UTEP, this road game is a much easier travel destination for a Black Knights team looking to continue it's unexpectedly perfect start to the…
ArmySports.comFriday at 10:29 AM
Three Keys: Army at BuffaloIt has been a stunning start to the season for Army who, after just three games, have already surpassed their win total for the entire 2015 season. This Buffalo game is another one…
ArmySports.comThursday at 1:07 PM
Buffalo: First LookMoving to 4-0 for the first time since 1996 will not be easy, but if the Black Knights can get the option rolling in the same way that allowed them to score 66 points at UTEP then…
ArmySports.comWednesday at 3:01 PM
Army Report Card: UTEPIt was the most dominant performance we have seen from the Black Knights in many years and the excitement and buzz around this team is palpable at this point. Here is a look at how…
ArmySports.comTuesday at 2:43 PM
Highlights: Army 66, UTEP 14The Army Black Knights are off to their hottest start in years. On Saturday West Point blasted UTEP 66-14. Look inside for video highlights of the game.
ArmySports.comMonday at 9:53 AM