Exclusive Interview with UCF's 1st Commitment

Evan Swindall of Spain Park High School in Alabama was UCF's first football commitment for the class of 2009. A stellar student and equally remarkable player, the Knights are fortunate to have Swindall's services and Inside Knights proudly introduces UCF's first recruit of the year to our loyal readers.

At 6'3", 285 lbs, Swindall has the size to contribute right away and will likely be a fixture on the Knights' offensive line for years to come.

The Knights recruited Swindall to play center, which he played his sophomore year, but this past season he switched to left guard for Spain Park. Swindall will be moving again this summer, but it won't just be positions; he is slated to transfer to Lafayette High School in Georgia. Swindall's father, Perry, accepted the head coaching position at Lafayette and Swindall will be moving out of state with him. This will be Swindall's third transfer in as many years, but he has transitioned gracefully every time and there is no reason to think he won't do so again.

"Moving is no big deal. Change is nice," Swindall told Inside Knights. "Playing in Georgia will be totally different, especially the intensity level."

With one more season left until he can head to UCF, Swindall knows that he has accomplished much in two years of starting on varsity, but he is also aware that he can work on several aspects of his game.

"I'd like to get stronger," says Swindall, who could contribute right away when he enrolls at UCF, so getting stronger is a must. Known for his pass-blocking, Swindall is good as a run blocker, but he needs to become a little more complete when he gets to the next level. However, Swindall's ability to keep defenders out of the backfield is second to none, as he has not allowed a sack in his high school career. This alone should help Swindall's transition to college after this upcoming season.

Along with his terrific pass-blocking, Swindall also offers versatility because he has played center and guard in the past two years, and with his size, he will have the physical tools to move across the line.

"Both positions are difficult, but center is a little more challenging."

Swindall said center was a little more complex because it required him to control the line and know what everyone of his fellow linemen were doing, but he feels he can handle it.

Swindall is an excellent scholar as he is an "A/B" student and is also a participant in many clubs, including his school's chess club, and he uses his astuteness to gain an edge on opponents.

"I feel like I'm able to pick up on concepts easily and I can analyze tendencies of players on the other team." His ability to use his mental dexterity has allowed Swindall to be dominant at both center and left guard, and he should be able to use this to his advantage when he is wearing gold and white.

Swindall decided on UCF over South Alabama,Georgia Southern, Southern Miss, Louisiana Tech, Louisiana Monroe, Army, Navy, and Memphis. Swindall was also recruited heavily by Alabama when current UCF coach Geoff Collins was with the Crimson Tide. When Collins signed with the Knights, UCF then had the inside track on Swindall and he chose the Knight's because of Collins, along with other reasons.

"I really liked the campus, everything was real new. Coach O'Leary (head coach), Coach Freeman (offensive line) and Coach Collins (linebacker) are all real nice and that helped too."

Swindall committing with UCF so early was a bit of a surprise, but his decision came down to wanting to find stability.

"They (UCF) showed interest for a while and going to their Junior Day and seeing everything played a factor in my decision. I really wanted to get this decision out of the way. It's cool to find a place where I know I'll be in a couple of years."

Through the recruiting process, Swindall received a lot of advice and support from his father/coach.

"My dad didn't put a lot of pressure on me and basically said just go where you want to go."

Now that Swindall has his decision out of the way, he is hoping to concentrate purely on his senior season and then looks forward to an illustrious career with the Knights. Swindall says he'd just like to help the team win right away and would like to do his best on and off the field.

"I hope to play as much as I can during my time with UCF and really hope to get a good education and earn my degree."

Planning to major in Business Law, Swindall said that while UCF's academic reputation wasn't the lone deciding factor when committing to the Knights, it certainly helped. With a fantastic academic background and an equally impressive list of credentials as a player, the Knights will be bringing in a well-rounded person that should boost UCF's prestige, on and off the field.

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