Tennessee DE Visits Cardinals

One of the top Defensive Ends in the Volunteer State paid Ball State a visit this past weekend and came away impressed.

Despite spending 14 hours total in a car over the weekend, Alcoa (TN) DE Jonathan Decker had an outstanding time visiting Ball State this past weekend.

”I really enjoyed the visit,” Decker said. “I had a great time and I am glad I made the 7 hour trip up there.”

Decker, a 6-4 250 DE who holds an offer from Ball State as well as Austin Peay, Furman and Chattanooga, had a lot of great things to talk about from his visit to Muncie, IN.

”The coach staff stood out to me,” Decker said. “It seemed like they really cared about the players and their success, not only on the field, but in the class room. The head coach (Pete Lembo) knows everything about all of his players’ academics and he checks their grades on a weekly basis. I heard this several times during my visit and it was ‘you can’t play football forever and what matters is that when you leave here, you have a good education and plenty of job opportunities’. What also stood out to me is that they are 1 of only 13 schools in the NCAA that graduates 90% of their student athletes.”

Aside from the coaches, Decker was also able to take a look around the facilities and campus.

”The campus was really nice,” Decker said. “It was a walking campus, so it’s very compact and everything is close. I liked the stadium and the field turf. They also told me that they are re-doing their turf and the end zones, so that is going to be awesome. The weight room was nice. I feel like the weight training coach (Dave Feely) knew what he was doing and was very smart when it comes to getting the players ready to play and getting his players big and strong.”

Despite the 7 hour on-way trip, Decker still enjoys the fact that if his family can’t make a trip to watch him play, they still have opportunities to watch him in action.

”With Ball State beings roughly 7 hours away,” Decker said. “All their games are televised on ESPN. So if I happen to go there, if my parents can’t make it my games, they can watch it on TV and that’s a big deal to me being that far way.”

With several offers in hand, Decker, who missed the summer camp circuit a year ago recovering from rotator cuff surgery, will continue to hit the road for visits and then camps in the summer time.

I have interest from Georgia Tech and have taken several visits,” Decker said. “I might make a trip down there soon to watch a practice. I’m also visiting Middle Tennessee State next weekend. A lot of coaches will be coming to see our spring practice which starts on April 28th, so I am hoping to get more looks. As for the summer, so far I’ve only planned on going to Georgia Tech’s and Tennessee’s camps, but I might go to a couple of schools’ camps that have offered me just to get to meet the coaches again and let them see me live in pads.”


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