The 5-foot-11, 153-pound Roland fought off an ankle sprain to not only lead Arcadia High with 40 receptions, 824 yards, 10 touchdowns and an average of 20.6 yards per catch last season, but he’s gotten PAC-12, Mountain West and Big Sky coaches talking to him.
“I have been contacted by Oregon, UCLA, Utah, San Jose State, Northern Arizona, Montana State, Wyoming, New Mexico State, Colorado State and Fresno State,” Roland said.
Regarding the latter, the Class of 2017 prospect Roland had this to say about the Bulldogs: “I just talked to coach [Jordan] Peterson. He came down to my school and we had a very great talk. He told me that he’s seen my film and they loved it so I’m assuming that they like me as a wide receiver because of my film. But once they see me at defensive back, they will like more as a DB.”
Roland currently holds one scholarship offer from NAIA program Kentucky Christian. He said he’s naturally a wide receiver, but wants to flip to the defensive side of the ball at the next level.
“I am very competitive and always try to work harder than the next person,” Roland said. “I’m looking at getting bigger, faster and stronger plus become mentally better on the field.”
Roland is six points waiting to happen under the lights. He has a running back-like elusiveness to his game and has a strong second gear after the catch. He’s destroyed man coverage especially on deep routes. He’s also an aggressive man-to-man cornerback who thrives on jamming at the line of scrimmage then using his speed to stay track of receivers.
He’s spent his offseason developing his craft with The Pro Way, the club 7on7 team owned and managed by former NFL running back Darick Holmes.
Along with the Pro Way, one guy who has played a key role in his recruitment is his offensive coordinator Robert Maxie, who has produced college and NFL level talent in the San Gabriel Valley.
“Coach Maxie has been a great influence,” Roland said. “When I’m lost or feeling down, he directs me in the right direction.”
While he’s received camp invites and letters of interest from different FBS/FCS programs, Roland believes he’s an underrated prospect in a region that’s known for being a major hotbed for college football talent.