Meeks' Explosion Continues With Cal Offer
One of the first things that San Diego (Calif.) Del Norte cornerback Quentin Meeks says about California – his fifth offer in the past month – is that the Bears are a "traditional program" that has produced "a lot of great players," and he should know. His father -- Ron Meeks -- is the secondary coach for the San Diego Chargers. Who plays for the Bolts? None other than Keenan Allen and cornerback Steve Williams.
"He told me that, wherever I decide to go, he would support me, 100 percent," Meeks said of his father, who played for Miami – one of Meeks' favorites early in the recruiting process. "The schools out here are just as good as any other school. I have NFL dreams, and he said that as long as it's a good program, you can go to the NFL from anywhere. The most important thing is the academics, and that's one thing that a lot of these West Coast Schools offer, is Stanford, UCLA, Cal – they offer academic prestige. It's unbelievable."
What really tickles Meeks the most about the Bears is Berkeley's academic standing, something his father has pounded into him.
"What impresses me the most about it, is the high academics. It's up there with some of the elite schools, and that's one thing that I stress to all these coaches in the process: Academics are probably the most important thing to me," Meeks said. "Obviously, with their down year last year -- 1-11, I think it was, and they didn't win any games in the Pac-12 – that dampened their program a little bit, but I always go back to the fact that Auburn was 1-11 two years ago, and last year, they went to the National Championship."
Over the past week or so, Meeks says he's gotten 10-15 hand-written letters from Cal, and it was an unexpected in-person visit from secondary coach Greg Burns that helped push the Bears as a prospective destination for the 6-foot-1, 185-pounder, who had just gotten his first scholarship offer from UCLA.
"It really wasn't his area to recruit," Meeks said. "He doesn't have San Diego, but he's the defensive backs coach, and they're looking at me as a DB, so he came down to see what was happening. I had a nice talk with him, really liked what his thoughts were, and he really seemed to like me, and everything."
Over several weeks, that relationship blossomed, and on Friday, Burns offered.
It's been an interesting month for Meeks, who attributes his quick rise to his performance on the 7-on-7 circuit with Elite 760.
"Oh, man, it's tremendous, dude," Meeks beamed. "About four weeks ago, I didn't have any offers, and now, ever since the UCLA offer, everything has picked up so much, and I'm just thankful for all the opportunities I've gotten, especially from Pac-12 schools. That's a major conference, and I'm just thankful for all of it, honestly.
"Honestly, I think it was the 7-on-7 circuit this spring. That was the biggest thing. It's not that they saw me there, but word got around that I was performing at a high level there, against very good competition, and I think I just got noticed from there, and they looked at my film. They saw that I can actually play. I went against Iman Marshall a couple of times, against some of the real top guys at cornerback and receiver, and it really helped me, because I did really well against them."
Meeks doesn't attend a traditional powerhouse football school, but Del Norte is a rigorous academic institution, and Meeks has taken it upon himself to craft a challenging schedule, which includes AP Calculus. Next year, he's taking AP Statistics and AP Environmental Science, and currently holds a 3.4 GPA.
"I work really hard in it, and I knew I had to challenge myself, because football is not guaranteed," Meeks said. "However long you play, you have to be able to get a meaningful degree at whatever school you go to. I knew that, to be eligible to go to a school like Berkeley, Stanford, Boston College, UCLA, I knew I had to take challenging classes, and I go to a really challenging school, and it's going to help me in the long run."
Meeks is open to every geographic region, though right now he's being mainly recruited by West Coast Schools, with the exception of Boston College.
"I'm here on the West Coast, so obviously, the schools that are going to be contacting me the most are the West Coast schools," Meeks said. "I have no problem with that. I'm not going to limit myself to a region or a specific area to play, or anything like that, because I love it out here on the West Coast, especially Southern California, San Diego. I've been to the Bay Area before, and it's gorgeous up there. I'm not going to limit myself to an East Coast school or whatever, just because they're on the East Coast. Whatever school I go to, it's going to be unbiased. It's going to be based off of where I feel comfortable, and making sure my family understands that this decision is all on me."
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