2012 QB Has Strong Duke Ties

It's never too early to get a head start on the next group of top rated prospects. While the Blue Devils continue to work in the class of 2011, Duke is also making headway with several top 2012 players as well. One of them is St. Louis native Thomas Militello.

"I attended Duke's camps and had a chance to speak with Coach Roper for a while after camp," said Thomas Militello. "I am going to be coming back to Duke for the Alabama game."

At 6-foot-4 and 185 pounds with a strong arm and good accuracy, Militello figures to find himself pretty high on a number of recruiting boards next summer and into the fall. So far a number of programs have already jumped in with interest including Mizzouri, Virginia, Boston College, Wake Forest, Duke, Northwestern, and Illinois.

As a rising junior Militello says it's too early to name favorites, but he has been able to begin building relationships with a number of the programs on his list. With regard to Duke he says the Blue Devils' approach has made an impression starting with his experience at camp.

"We got there early and the coaches had us run 40s. Then, while the defense went through some individual positional drills the offense had agility drills that the strength and conditioning coaches set up. Then the offense went to positional drills. The afternoon was really about one-on-ones which was the highlight of my day because we got to compete against the defense and really show out. The talent level was very high - very comparable to what I saw at LSU and the Nike Camp with a number of players doing amazing things."

"Individually I think my footwork was among the best there. With my throwing, I think I did pretty well, especially during the one on ones. I think I exceeded my expectations on the deep balls, but I also think I could have done better on the out routes, for I didn't lead the receivers to the sideline enough.

Apparently Militello did enough to garner some serious extra attention while on the field.

"After the camp Coach Roper had me come with his group. After everyone said goodbye to their coaches he talked with me a little bit and asked me to stay in close contact with him if I ever had any questions about Duke. What really surprised me though is that when I got to camp and we were doing our positional drills, he knew my first name without me introducing myself."

In addition to his talent, it is likely that Roper was aware of Thomas' family ties to Duke as well. It's something that can only help the Blue Devils.

"Naturally because both of my parents went to Duke, I've been a fan since I was little. So my interest was very high to begin with. But to see the coaching staff and their passion to become a better team just heightened that interest. I guess you can classify me as very, very interested [in Duke]. The pros with Duke are the ACC, the coaching staff, the facilities and campus, the tradition, and the academics. I guess the cons are that I'm kind of a big city guy having lived in Tokyo for 11 years, but I with all the pros of Duke I could definitely manage the compact size of the Triangle area."

That interest seems to go both ways as he's been on the board and receiving letters and has been in contact with the Duke staff for more than a year.

"Since the end of my sophomore season Coach Roper and my dad have been talking a lot. Also, ever since Thad Lewis has joined the Rams here in St. Louis he has been putting in some good words for me with the staff. Thad and I have thrown the ball around a few times and he as given me a lot of great advice about fundamentals and the recruiting process."

After camping with Duke Militello will has or will camp with Wake Forest, Boston College, Northwestern, Virginia, and Vanderbilt. With my team I will be going to the Illinois camp, and a couple of local 7 on 7 tournaments. He reports no offers, but says all the coaching staffs have indicated that a strong start to his junior season could change all that.

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