Wake first to offer Proehl

Wake Forest was the first to offer Charlotte area product Austin Proehl of Providence Senior High School. The 5-foot-11, 170-pound wide receiver is the son of Demon Deacon and NFL great, Ricky Proehl. He said the connection to the program could be a big plus when it becomes decision time.

"I've kind of grown up there," Proehl said of Wake Forest. "I've always kept up with the football team and how they're doing. Last Thursday, I was on the phone with Taylor Stubblefield, the wide receivers coach, and he told me I had an offer. He told me he likes my big play ability, my yards after the catch, my speed, route running, and leadership. Basically, he said that I had many of the qualities he looks for in a wide receiver.

"I went [to Wake Forest] a couple of weeks ago for a junior day. I do like it there. You're not just another player on a visit to them. They let you know that you mean a lot of them and make you feel welcome being there."

Another plus in Wake Forest's favor in recruiting Proehl is he's also been offered by Tom Walter for baseball and the Deacon staff has no problem with him competing in both sports in college.

In his junior year for Providence football, Proehl did a little of everything filling in at quarterback when the starter went down to injury early in the season.

"I had 28 catches for 505 yards and six touchdowns at wide receiver," he said. "I rushed for 128 yards and five touchdowns. I had an 85-yard kickoff return and a 65-yard punt return for touchdowns and also had an interception on defense. Next year I think I'm going back to wide receiver. I think we;ll have somebody step up who can get me the ball."

Proehl is receiving heavy interest from Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, and N.C. State. Both Georgia and N.C. State are both looking at him for baseball as well. He's also being recruited by Duke, Maryland, Tennessee, Texas Tech, and Villanova.

"I'd like to go to a school that would allow me to play football and baseball," Proehl said. "I'm looking for a school where I can fit in. I want to feel appreciated by the coaches and not feel like I'm just another player lost in the mix. An important aspect is how they plan on using me in different ways on the field. It comes down to the relationships I have with the coaches and how I think the program will do in the future."

Proehl will display his talent at Nike and Under Amour combines this month. At Wake Forest, he ran a 4.52 forty yard dash. He is the middle child of Ricky Proehl, currently the wide receivers coach for the Carolina Panthers.

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