Andrew Rice sat in the stands of the Citrus Bowl with his mother three years ago, watching the then Golden Knights play. Enjoying the atmosphere and location that the up and coming program offered, Rice made his mother a promise that day, telling her one day he would be a Knight.
"I remember watching a game as a freshman at the Citrus Bowl," Rice told InsideKnights.com. "I told my mom then that I would do whatever it takes to play there one day."
Rice is UCF's eight commit of the 2010 class and
he will hold a special place in this group of commits, as he is just the second local player (after Cornelius Whitehead) to give UCF his verbal in his respective class. The Knights' ties to the community and the school's location to Lake Mary, which is 20 minutes away from where Rice plays, were driving forces in Rice's decision to commit.
"My family is definitely excited to see me going this close to home."
It wasn't just UCF's location that inspired Rice to give UCF his vote of confidence but a culmination of many different factors.
"I feel great; I just have a lot of confidence in UCF. It has great facilities and a great staff, I'm really excited to play here. I've been thinking about UCF for a long time, they were the first to offer and I've been thinking about them constantly. It's close, it's a great environment there and they run the same defense my high school team does."
The Lake Mary H.S. defensive end/tackle projects as a three-technique tackle for the Knights. His recruiting coach Geoff Collins knows the kind of impact Rice can make and was elated when Rice committed.
"He was very excited. He just kept saying ‘awesome' and ‘great job.' He thinks this is the right fit for me."
UCF is beginning to run low on scholarships, as the team is projected to have maybe eight more spots available at the most, although that number is not official. Did this have any impact of Rice's decision?
"No, I committed early so I could concentrate on summer workouts and school next year. I am committed to be a Knight now and I want to be able to become a better player now so I can be ready when I'm a freshman at UCF."
Being the first school to offer Rice, the Knights seemingly made an impact on the 6'3", 280 lb. tackle. With his family so close and a program that offers everything he could ask for, Rice seems to be as committed as they come. Despite offers from schools like Purdue, Iowa State, FIU, Troy and others, Rice doesn't appear to be looking anywhere else.
"I haven't gone to any camps lately, I am 100 percent committed to UCF."
UCF and Andrew Rice: A Perfect Fit
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