Army offer brings tears of joy

Army was first to offer Benjamin Schrider, a 6-foot-3, 222-pound tight end/defensive end out of Saint Mary's College High School in Berkeley, Calif. The Bay Area prospect has received a lot of attention following a fine junior performance but was overcome with emotion when his initial offer finally arrived.

"It was a Thursday night," Schrider told ArmySports.com, "when Coach (Sean) Saturnio called me. I was on a bus on my way home from working at a homeless shelter. We talked for about 30-40 minutes and I wasn't expecting an offer at all, but at the end of the conversation he said that I have an official offer from the U.S. Military Academy. I don't mind telling you that I started crying right there on the bus.

"Coach Saturnio is someone who I really like. He's probably my favorite coach I talk to. I'm a faith-based person. I talked to Coach Saturnio about God. I would like to become a teacher and work with inner-city students, so it's exciting to think about going to the number one institution for leadership in the country.

"With football I think [Army] liked my work ethic and my motor. Out of all of the colleges recruiting me they're the only one that likes me at tight end. They liked my speed, my ability to run precise routes, and my blocking. I know that 40-percent of their playbook uses a tight end package. They loved my tape, but most of the talk about my game has been through my head coach. Most of what I talk to Coach Saturnio about isn't football-related, but the things I'm involved in off the field.

"I'm really interested in Army. My Dad was born on an Air Force base, I've had cousins in the service, one of Army's stars, Chris Carnegie, played at St. Mary's, and one of my assistant coach at St. Mary's, a man who is very inspiring to me, Ty Amy, is a West Point grad, so a do have a few connections."

Although Schrider was ecstatic to receive the Army offer he's also being looked at by Air Force, BYU, Cal, Colorado State, Texas State and several FCS programs.

"I'm open right now," said Schrider on his recruiting. "I'll be attending junior days at San Jose State and Fresno State and practices and Cal and Arizona this spring.

"In college I want to be coached by men of faith. That's what attracts me to colleges like BYU and Army. I want to be in a good moral setting. I believe that who you are is defined by who you surround yourself with. Cal would be a dream come true. I grew up a die-hard Golden Bears fan. I grew up around the program and got to know players like Aaron Rodgers and Marshawn Lynch when they played there.

"I do like the east coast. My mother is from Maryland and my dad is from Pennsylvania. This summer I'm going to West Point and the other east coast schools I do receive an offer during the upcoming evaluation period. Don't me wrong, I love football, but I'm excited about the opportunity at West Point and the kind of effect it would have on my future. In the end I'm going to do what I feel will make the most positive impact on my future. The more I learn about West Point, the more I like it."

As a junior, Schrider lead his section in sacks with 14. He was named All-League and All-Metro in 2013. The FCS schools expressing the most interest include Cornell, Harvard, Idaho State, Princeton, and Weber State.


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