Army "wows" McAllister with offer

Central Catholic (Pittsburgh, Pa.) enjoyed a big National Signing Day this past February with 14 of their students signing D-1 letters of intent. Angelo Natter and Shafer Swann were two of the players who decided on attending West Point. Army is going after another one of the Vikings when they extended an offer Tuesday morning to Eric McAllister, a 6-foot-1, 270-pound offensive lineman.

"What happened with all of it was Coach Bodine gave me a call a couple of weeks ago," McAllister told "He said he saw my film, loved it. They run the triple option and he saw me executing some of the same blocks they do. Coach Loose came to my school and the meeting with him went really well. The game he saw was a game that I played all four quarters in so he was able to see what I can do. He went back to West Point and told the coaches what he saw. The rest, as they say, is history. Today Army became my most recent offer.

"My father was in the Army and loves the military academies, so right after I received the offer I had to give him a call. I'm very honored. An offer from West Point is one that you don't take lightly. Some guys think of offers as birthday presents. I don't see it that way. I see it as a representation of a lot of hard work and sacrifice that's been put in not just by me but also my parents. I've been working for these offers since I was five years old running around in a Steelers jersey. It's been a group effort. I just consider myself to be very blessed. Army's a great addition to my offer list. I haven't begun to narrow down my top five favorites but when when I do Army will be at the top of the list. West Point is such a prestigious institution. The acceptance rate is just 9-percent. That's ridiculous. What a great opportunity to have."

McAllister has been a three year starter at center at Central Catholic. He's helped a team that lost key players like J.J. Cosentino (to FSU) and Tre Tarpley (to Vanderbilt) to a 8-1 record.

"I've just done my job," McAllister said on his season. "Some have called us a young team but that should never be a detriment to a team's success. We have the right mindset and I think that shows in our record. We've had some great leaders step up and I put myself in that category. I've taken care of every nose guard I've gone up against this season. I think my highlight film speaks for itself. I've definitely been taking care of business.

"My offers have been mainly off of my junior film. I got my first one from Albany. Then James Madison, Wagner, New Hampshire, Wofford, a Delaware came in. In June it picked up a lot. That month I was offered by Montana, Rhode Island, Central Connecticut State, Idaho State, and New Mexico State. July it kind of died down but now it's picking up again. Two weeks ago I was offered by Charleston Southern. And now, today, I got Army.

"I'll be doing a lot of thinking about the situation I'll be going into with depth chart, how many centers are on the current roster, and how strongly the coaches have been pursing me. If want to have a good bond with the coaches because I'll be around them more than I will my teachers. I also want to get along with the players but I won't know about that until I experience it on my visits. I've been to the majority of the schools that have offered me on unofficial visits this summer. My dad is big on me having all the information. He thinks, and so do I, that this decision on college will catapult me to great things ahead so it's best to be armed with as much information as possible."

This Friday, Central Catholic will begin the playoffs against Norwin. They're trying to make a return trip to the state finals. A year ago they lost to St. Joseph's in the PIAA Class AAAA championship at Hersheypark Stadium.

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