Army offers IMG Academy star

IMG Academy, located in Bradenton, Fla., is attracting many top athletes in only their second year of existence. In the spring evaluation period, more than 100 D-1 coaches stopped by IMG to see what the talent-pool had to offer. This year's senior class already has nine players make their commitment to top-tier D-1 colleges.

Army may have found the tenth in Tyler Mabry, a 6-foot-4, 240-pound tight end, who is originally from Ypsilanti, Mich.

"I've been talking to Coach Dewitt through Twitter for awhile," Mabry explained to ArmySports.com. "It was a couple of Tuesdays ago when he asked me to call, said he had some good news for me, and told me Army has an offer for me. He said they saw how physical a player I am with my blocking ability at tight end and think I'd excel in the program.

"First of all, I really like the Army program. I've been watching the games and I'm getting a feel for what they do offensively with the tight ends. I'm learning more about the program and would like to set an official up with them, but haven't done so yet. If I went to West Point, I know it's somewhere I'd be successful. I'm not just talking about having success on the field, but in life after college."

Mabry grew up in the college town of Ypsilanti in the shadows of Eastern Michigan. When he heard about the success the new IMG Academy football team was having under the guidance of head coach Chis Weinke, the former Heisman trophy winner, Mabry decided to make the move down south.

"I was looking to go to a good college prep school," he said. "I got recruited to play at IMG by Coach E.G. Green. I like it a lot. I feel like it's has me ready to go on to play at one of the top D-1 universities and be able to contribute right off the bat. There's no doubt that my experience here will help me be successful in college. It's just I've had the opportunity to play with some very talented players, we went up against some top competition in the the of Florida, and I was coached by the best guys around. I'm going to be here the entire school year before heading back to Michigan.

"We're 10-1 on the season, but have one game remaining. We can't make the playoffs this year, unfortunately, because it's just our second year as a program. I've made close to a dozen catches and had two touchdowns. One thing that's really helped here, with the coaching, is just knowledge of the game. I started out as a basketball player then transitioned over to football so I didn't have the foundation that a lot of guys have, but being at IMG I've come a long way in my understanding of playing the game."

Mabry has landed a wide variety of offers from Florida Tech, a new program that fielded their first team in 2013, Presbyterian, Chattanooga, St. Francis in Pennsylvania, and now Army.

"When I go to make a decision on college, I want to see how they use the tight ends," Mabry explained. "I want to see that they get the tight ends involved in the offense. Location doesn't really matter. I mean, I came all the way to Florida from Michigan. I do want to know that I'm going to a place that I'm comfortable with where I am. Then I'll look at education and what majors the school offers. I'm not certain when I'll make my decision. I'll be going home for break in December. I may try to decide after that but nothing is set in stone."

Back in Ypsilanti, Mabry starred at Lincoln High School where he took over the starting role at tight end in his junior season. He heard about IMG Academy, which has the finest football facilities in the country featuring two practices fields, a 10,000 square foot weight room, and a 5,000-seat stadium with a Jumbotron, and decided he had to make the move.

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