If Tahree McQueen is as elusive on the field as he is off the gridiron, the Bearcats have themselves a fine player. After many phone calls to verify his reported commitment to Cincinnati, Bearcat Insider finally managed to speak with Tahree's mother, while her son was at work, to confirm other reports of his decision to attend the University of Cincinnati and play football. Kym Thomas, Tahree's mother, succinctly explained the events from last Tuesday night‘s home visit with Bearcat assistant coach, Charley Molnar. "He came in and spoke with Tahree about their interest in him and what they have to offer Tahree, and Tahree accepted."
John Jacobs, the head football coach at West Orange High School, had this to say about McQueen after facing Eastside in the New Jersey state playoffs. "We face athletes like him, never a quarterback like him. He's a tremendous athlete. He's elusive and if you don't contain him, he's going to do the kind of damage he did." That damage consisted of passing for 244 yards and 4 scores along with running for a 5th touchdown.
Ron Anello of New Jersey's state champs Clifton High School was just as lavish with his praise of McQueen. "Tahree is a phenomenal athlete. I don't care who you're rooting for, just to watch the kid run 40 yards, the kid is unbelievable." Anello was referring to a 40 yard run McQueen made in the state championship game against Clifton in Giants Stadium.
Kym Thomas is excited for her son even though it will be his first time away from her. "I'm happy for him. It will be a challenge at first with it being his first time away from home, but I trust Tahree and think he's ready. He's going to be successful."
New Jersey's Herald News apparently agrees with Kym since Tahree was chosen as their "Offensive Player of the Year." McQueen threw for 1,939 yards and 20 touchdowns against only 8 interceptions. He also ran for an additional 729 yards and 7 scores, but Tahree was recruited by the Bearcats as an athlete and is not expected to play quarterback.
Despite having offers from only Division IAA schools (Stony Brook and Maine), Kym felt the official visit to Cincinnati was what put the Bearcats in the lead for her son's signature next Wednesday on national signing day. "He was a little apprehensive at first, but once he made the visit and saw the setting, he didn't feel too out of place or too far from home."
McQueen will join fellow Garden State football players Craig Parmenter, O. J. Woodard, Randy Martinez and Sam Griffin as Bearcats. Martinez (DE) was named 1st team All-North Jersey with 75 tackles and 4 sacks. Parmenter (OL) is a two-time member of the WGHT All-Area team and was named to the 1st squad of the All-Passaic and Herald News teams in 2006. Parmenter reportedly graded out at 90% this year with 21 pancake blocks. As a junior, Woodard was 1st team All-Area as a utility player and made the same team as a punter in 2006. Woodard will play wide-out for the Bearcats. Griffin played for Don Bosco Prep High School, the state champs in the non-public North A division, and could play on either the offensive or defensive lines for UC.