Gilbert Honored to Represent Hometown

Saturday saw Cincinnati (Ohio) Princeton athlete Tyrell Gilbert ready to make his college decision. Gilbert talks about his decision to be a Bearcat.

The recruiting process never reached full speed for Cincinnati (Ohio) Princeton athlete Tyrell Gilbert as he picked up several offers from programs in the Mid-American Conference.

While Gilbert knew other programs have expressed interest and talked of offering, a recent campus visit was all the 6-foot-1, 205-pound future safety needed to know he found a future home.

"I've committed to the University of Cincinnati," said Gilbert. "Once I got on campus and met the coaching staff I just fell in love with what the university had to offer me with great academics. I was also impressed with how honest the coaching staff was with me."

Over the years Gilbert has seen other local prospects stay home and knows being close to home will have a major impact on others in his family.

"Staying home was very important to me and means a lot to me," explained Gilbert. "I have a younger brother and sister that look up to me a lot. I also have step brothers and sisters that look up to me. Staying home will allow my family to be able to come watch me play and it also means a lot to be able to stay home and represent my hometown."

Gilbert gives full credit to the Bearcats coaching staff in showing who his future would be as a Bearcat.

"The staff was very welcoming and never forced me into something or pressured me," he said. "They also showed me a lot of love and made me feel very wanted by them. I also went down and Coach (Steve) Clinkscale told me during my visit how he was going to coach me hard and at a fast pace. He also stressed that I have to do everything academic wise.

"Coach (Robert) Prunty was my main recruiter and did everything right. He was great during all of this and Coach (Tommy) Tuberville was also great. He's a great coach and real nice to talk with."

Also playing a role in Gilbert's decision was one of his coaches and mentors as former Bearcats running back Mike Daniels explained the ups and downs of being a hometown player.

"Coach Daniels and I sat down and talked about things before I made my decision," said Gilbert. "He told me it was a good thing to stay home but also said there negatives and positives with being a local guy. But he felt I would be a great fit for Cincinnati and my parents and I also feel the same way."

Just like the Bearcats faithful, Gilbert is excited about the future at Cincinnati and talked with his future head coach about the direction of the program.

"I'm extremely excited about everything being done," said Gilbert. "I was down on campus about a week ago and the turf was all tore up. Coach Tuberville was telling me about how they are going to be renovating the stadium and when I'm on the team it should be close to being finished.

"I'm happy to be part of all of it and happy to be one of Coach Tuberville's commitments.

On the field Gilbert knows what his future will hold.

"I'll be playing free safety," he said. "I'll have to make a few adjustments like betting down my back-pedal techniques. "I've started varsity and played safety my freshman and sophomore years, but last year Coach (Gary) Croley didn't want me to get hurt playing safety as I was the only quarterback on the team.

"But the speed, size and strength are already there and it will be just a matter of getting back to working on the finer parts of my game."

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