Army offers Illinois lineman

Michael Gomez, out of Cary-Grove High School (Cary, Ill.) received an offer this past weekend from Army head coach Jeff Monken. It was the first offer for the 6-foot, 265-pound offensive lineman who projects at either center or nose guard at the college level.

"It was my first offer," Gomez told ArmySports.com. "I'm real excited about it. I was on the phone with Coach Monken on Sunday evening when he offered me. A very close friend of mine, his father, who has been like a father to me happens to be very good friends with Coach Monken. Basically, he talked to Coach Monken about me, after hearing good things about me from him, and seeing my film, his interest was piqued. I talked to him three times before Sunday night and we talked about me coming out to West Point sometime to check out campus, but he had not offered me until a couple of nights ago.

"I think [Monken] really liked what he saw from me on the field. They run an option and we run an option, He said he liked the way I drive block and my get-off. He told me he liked my attitude. That that's something that really can't be coached.

"I haven't been to campus yet. I am planning on going sometime in May. I've heard nothing but great things about West Point. What's really appealing to me is the quality of education you receive at a public institution. There are a lot of places with impressive academics, but they're the best at it. With Coach Monken, I've heard nothing but great things about him as well. He's hard-nosed, loves hard-working players who get out their and hustle, and every time I've spoken with him he's been super nice to me about everything."

Gomez started at Cary-Grove, in the northern suburbs of Chicago, his freshman season. He is a two time first team All-Conference and All-Area selection and earned an All-State Honorable Mention as a junior.

"I believe that I've been overlooked by a lot of people, probably because of my height," Gomez stated. "The Army offer has gotten me more recognition. I've been hearing from more coaches. A couple of them sent my a friend request on Facebook.

"This summer I'm going to try to make it back to a camp at Iowa. I have a good relationship with their offensive line coach. I'll probably go to Northern Illinois again because they have such a good program in the MAC.

"Academics really are the biggest thing for me. I want to be where I believe I'll be the most successful. I want to be a part of a winning team. I'm a competitor. I want to win."

Cary-Grove should do a lot of winning next season with 17 returning starters from a team that went to the second round the 6A playoffs. The offensive line will be impressive with Gomez and Trevor Ruhland, an offensive tackle with more than a dozen D1 offers to his credit. Gomez says he's added between 10 to 15 pounds of muscle and plans to play offensive guard, defensive end, and a little tight end as a senior.

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