Black Knights first to offer Parker

Ryan Parker received his initial offer from Army coaches on February 5th, the day after National Signing Day. Black Knights are hoping to reel in a top middle linebacker now that the focus has turned over to the 2016 class and the 6-foot-1, 205-pound middle linebacker out of Baylor School in Chattanooga, Tenn. has the potential of being one of the best.


"On Signing Day, I received a message from Coach (Sean) Saturnio saying 'I'd love to talk to you," Ryan Parker said to ArmySports.com. "The next morning when I spoke to him, I had my first offer. It's a blessing honestly. I'm extremely excited about it. The coaches have told me a little about what's going on with the program, how they're changing things around up there. I was invited to a camp and also a visit.

"The coaches I've talked to from Army, Stanford, and other places say they're very impressed with my speed. I've received a lot of compliments on my film especially on how hard I hit. They talked about my ability to read plays and how fast I react. We played a running back last season with offers from Tennessee and LSU and I met him in the hold every single time. I play smart and I'm not afraid to hit the hole and they said that really came out in watching my film."

Army brought in some nice linebackers from the South on Signing Day including Will Dunavant and Konnor Houston of Georgia and Harrison Rooney of Arkansas. They'd love to add Parker to their recruiting haul this go-round but will be facing stiff competition from football and wrestling recruiters alike.

"I was offered an official invite to camp from Stanford which they said they only give (to recruits) they're planning to offer," he said. "Wofford, Furman, and Mercer invited me to Junior Day and said I would get a offer when I came down. I'm talking to Virginia and Cornell for wrestling. This past weekend, I won my third state wrestling title.

"The number one factor for me in finding right college is the academics. I want to major in engineering. Second, of course, is football. Position doesn't matter. Stanford likes me at fullback, and while I'd probably prefer linebacker, but I'm definitely not telling anybody no if they like me at another position."

Parker tallied 174 tackles (27 for loss) and 15 sacks a junior last season. He was named All-Region, All-State, and Conference Defensive MVP in what's considered to be one of the toughest leagues in the country. Baylor has produced two outstanding linebackers in recent years, David Helton, who now attends Duke University and was recognized last December as the nation’s top scholar in college football, and Colton Jumper, who signed with the United States Naval Academy but decided to walk-on at Tennessee. Parker, who has broken many of their school records already, may just be the best of the bunch.

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