Apo Representing Well at Army Bowl

Highly recruited wide receiver Ross Apo joins BYU quarterback commit Jake Heaps at the Army All-American Bowl this Saturday. After a slow start in practices, Apo has risen to become one of the top performers in an event comprised of some of the top high school talent in the country.

When Texas wide receiver Ross Apo first stepped foot onto BYU's campus to perform in front of BYU coaches at a summer camp, it didn't take long to recognize he was a special player. Simply put, Apo stood out above the rest, and it wasn't because the then-sophomore-to-be was already about 6 feet 3 inches at the time. It was because no one among the hundreds of camp participants could cover him.

Fast forward to his senior year, and Ross has decommitted from Texas to become a BYU Cougar. He and future BYU quarterback Jake Heaps have paired up at the Army All-American Bowl practices to become a force that is competing well and even beating some of the best in the country. It should become a familiar theme for future BYU opponents and a welcomed sight for Cougar fans for years to come.

"We're doing good down here and everything is going well," said Apo earlier in the week. "We had a bit of a slow start yesterday because everyone was trying to get on the same page, but after we had a chance to kind of get to know one another everything has been better. There's a lot of good players out here that are fast and we just all had to adjust to everything."

When able, the dynamic duo of Heaps and Apo have connected on several passes. The challenge for the two has been more being able to play together than actually completing passes.

"Yeah, we've gotten a chance to show what we can do a few times," Apo said. "We hooked up a few times and were able to do some things. It's kind of tough though because they rotate us so much, so it's hard for me to get in with him sometimes. We‘ve actually been able to get a couple of passes off together though. It‘s going really good and we've been trying to show everyone what we're going to do down at BYU. Right now me and Jake are on the first team, so that's pretty good."

Although Apo may have the talent to compete among the best, one cannot get by on talent alone. That was something that was demonstrated to Apo earlier this week.

"[The other day] I wasn't part of the first team in the morning because I didn't know the plays," said Apo. "They would call out for a receiver and I didn't know the plays, and so they told me that they couldn't play me if I didn't know the plays."

So later that day, Heaps helped Apo get up to speed.

"During lunch, me and Jake went over the plays about seven times," Apo recounted. "After that I learned the plays and then went out and stopped thinking and just played the game. After that I was put in the first group by the coaches. Now it's me, Robert Woods from California, Nate Askew from Texas, and also Andrew White, who is also from Texas too. Those are the receivers on the first group. This is some of the best talent in the country out here. I think I'm competing well against some of the best out here. At first, like I said, it was getting down the plays that kind of held me back a little. Now it's all good and I'm doing well out here. I can do everything at full speed now. I just know there will be some things that I'll need to work on at the next level."

Overall the Army All-American Bowl experience thus far has been a positive one for Apo.

"It's been going pretty good and we've been having fun out here," Apo said. "Usually we just have fun and then had been going to practices a lot, but the practices had been pretty easy and stuff. It's more just relaxed and then having fun more than anything."

BYU coaches are hitting the recruiting trail to shore up their commits by making in-home visits. Because he's playing in the Army All-American Bowl, Apo received a phone call from his future position coach, Coach Higgins, who had something quite humorous to tell him.

"[Higgins] went up to my school yesterday to visit with Tayo [Fabuluje] and Teu [Kautai]," Apo said. "He said that while he was up there, all the girls at my high school were crying because they missed me. That's what he told me."

So not only does Apo break tackles on the football field, but he's also breaking hearts at The Oakridge School in Arlington, Texas.

"I told him to stop lying and he said he was being serious," said Apo with a laugh. "He said some of them were crying and the other ones that weren't crying looked sad. I was like, ‘Ah man, that's pretty funny.'"

After the bowl game, Apo will soon be heading up to Provo.

"School starts next Monday for me, so right after the game I'm going to try and fly out either Saturday or Sunday, " Apo said.

Apo wants to get out and join close friend Kyle Van Noy, who is already in Provo working out.

"I'm excited to get out there and get going," Apo said while laughing. "I'm not really nervous, but more excited to start working out at the next level. I spoke to Kyle and he's already out there and whining about how hard the workouts are. Yeah, he's said it's been really hard, but he said he's doing really good and is also excited to be out there. He said that he's just always really tired now. He told me that I'm not even going to be ready for what's coming my way, but any workout is going to be hard at this level no matter what. So I kind already have an idea of what to expect from what he was saying. He said it's dang hard and it's crazy. I'm sure it's just more all the conditioning he's doing now, but he's a big kid. He'll get over it."

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