Valor advanced to the this weekend’s championship game in Denver thanks in part to a last-second field goal victory over rival Cherry Creek. The 6-foot-3, 195-pound Stenstrom has been watching the rise of the Buffaloes and he’s been in attendance for games this season at Folsom Field.
“It was great, it was an awesome game. CU played great, nice to see them beat a good team. Great experience. I got to talk to coach [Darrin] Chiaverini and coach [Brian] Lindgren,” Stenstrom said of his most recent unofficial to Boulder on Nov. 19 for CU’s victory over Washington State.
“I get to see coach Chiaverini a lot because his son plays at my school so he’s down there a bunch. It’s always good to talk to them, develop a relationship with them.”
Stenstrom said he’s sent text messages of congratulations to CU head coach Mike MacIntyre and to Lindgren during the Buffs’ epic 2016 campaign. Northwestern, Purdue, Stanford and Nebraska are schools that have shown interest in the Valor three-star.
“I’ve been watching them, it’s been awesome. They’ve really turned their program around. I’m excited for coach Mac, I would love to see him stay there. He’s such a great guy. I really appreciate he’s a Godly man and he’s not afraid to show it,” Stenstrom continued on MacIntyre and CU.
The Buffs have kept in touch with the Valor signal-caller throughout the season, but they’re not applying pressure for a commitment. Stenstrom appreciates that recruiting approach.
“They have not really been pressing me so far. I’m glad about that, I’m focused on my season right now,” he said. “I don’t want to rush anything.”
Stenstrom is in an interesting position for a three-star QB, logging time behind center when he can and making the most of it. Valor’s starting quarterback is of course the talented senior four-star Dylan McCaffrey.
“We played five league games this year, all those games I got the third series. We were lucky enough to beat those teams pretty hand idly so I got to go in after we got a good lead,” Stenstrom said of how much he’s played as a junior.
Stenstrom hopes to take the reigns of the Valor offense next fall, but there’s another McCaffrey interested in the quarterback position. Valor is blessed with the problem of having an abundance of athletes and only one QB position.
“We have not figured it out yet. I’m excited to see what Luke does too because he’s a great athlete. I hope next season he plays some receiver so I can throw it to him,” Stenstrom said.
While Stanford has already taken a commitment for its 2018 quarterback in the four-star Jack West, Stenstrom isn’t too worried about it. Blake’s father, Steve, played for Stanford, with the elder Stenstrom supporting his son finding the right fit for college.
“He definitely has. Obviously he’s given me good perspective. There’s going to places you can value certain things, academics, football, but at the end of the day the decision is up to me,” Stenstrom said when asked if his father has been helpful in the recruiting process.
“Wherever I go, God has a plan for my life. He tells me that.”
When speaking with Stenstrom it’s evident faith and values are of the upmost importance. Loyalty is also something the three-star will remember when it comes time to pick a school.
“CU is my lone offer so far and I really appreciate that coming last spring. Just their confidence in me is something that I value,” Stenstrom said.
Valor (10-3) will battle Pomona (12-1) on Saturday in a rematch of the 2015 5A championship game, where the Eagles were victorious.
Pomona advanced with a 24-7 victory over Regis Jesuit this past weekend. Pomona scored 24 unanswered points against Regis despite playing without standout seniors Jake Moretti and Cameron Gonzales. Junior speedster Max Borghi was also sidelined with a knee injury.