Mason Up To The Challenge

For Cincinnati native Corey Mason the choice was an easy one, leave town and play as a scholarship player or stay home and take the challenge of earning his way in a BCS program.

Outside linebacker Corey Mason (6-foot-3, 210-pound) made the most of his senior season at Cincinnati (Ohio) Elder and earned a couple of scholarship offers in the process. But as Mason soon learned the recruiting process can turn quickly leaving a player looking for the best option.

"At the beginning of the recruiting process I had Cincinnati at the top of my list. I earned offers from Kent State and Eastern Illinois during the season and was hoping to earn one from Cincinnati, but that just never happened."

What some may consider bad timing made things work out for what Mason hopes is the best.

"I waited too long on my Kent State offer and they filled it. So I was looking at Eastern Illinois when Coach Coombs called my father and told him that Cincinnati had a preferred walk-on spot for me if I wanted it."

For Mason all it took was an official visit to seal the deal.

"I took my official visit and J.K. Schaffer was my host. I felt like I've known J.K. forever and I had a great time. My visit was great and I felt real comfortable with the other players. I didn't feel like I was different than any player they are giving a scholarship to. Once my visit was over I knew Cincinnati is the place I wanted to be."

An outside linebacker, Mason spent time with the Bearcats defensive staff who is recruiting him to stay at outside backer in a 4-3 defensive scheme.

"The coaches told me everyone is going to get a chance to compete and if you're good enough you're going to get a chance to play. I feel I'll earn a scholarship."

One thing Corey will have no problem getting use to is playing in Nippert Stadium. During his high school career he's played his share of games on the Cincinnati campus and knows what to expect.

"Being able to play at Nippert is an advantage for me. I know on game day the atmosphere is crazy and being a Cincinnati guy it's nice to represent the city and doing things in your hometown."

While Corey Mason may not have seen the bright lights of the recruiting process his talent is one that will serve Cincinnati well in the coming years. Don't be surprised when Mason earns a scholarship.

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