Last night Indiana picked up their eighth commit in the 2017 class when Peyton Hendershot gave the IU coaching staff his verbal pledge. Peegs.com spoke with Chris Coll, Hendershot's coach at Tri-West H.S. in Lizton, Indiana, about his standout player and why he believes he has a chance to be an impact player for the Hoosiers.
Coach Coll said the thing that stands out the most about Hendershot is what he brings to the field athletically.
"He is very dynamic,” Coach Coll said about Hendershot. “I believe they are looking at him as kind of a hybrid tight end, but he is also a whale of a defensive end. He can run and he is very athletic, and he is just scratching the surface of what his potential ultimately is going to be physically. There is just a lot of upside to him, and like I said, he is a very dynamic athlete.”
The Tri-West head coach said the position versatility that Hendershot possesses is very beneficial to the team and for him as a player.
“It just ups his value as a player having that versatility to play offense and defense,” Coach Coll said. “For us he is a difference-maker on both sides of the line of scrimmage. When you get a player like that at the high school level, and ultimately at the college level, you just know that you've got options. He can do different things and he is just a unique player.”
Hendershot’s first years at Tri-West he was primarily a receiver, but this past season Coach Coll and his staff started using him at other spots and it was a move that really paid off.
“Up until this past season he was a wideout for us, almost exclusively,” Coach Coll said. “Last year we started playing him some at tight end. When you split him out, because of his ability to run and his physical presence, he is a very tough match-up. You get a corner on him, and at our level they aren't typically that big, and he is a very difficult match-up out there. And he has the physical size and presence inside as a tight end so he is very dynamic on the offensive side. Last year he started playing some defensive end for us and he is very explosive and very long and hard to keep ahold of, whether you're run blocking him or pass blocking him. Just a difficult match-up for an offensive tackle.”
Hendershot not only excels on the football field at Tri-West, he is also a very good basketball player. Coach Coll said that just a few years ago Hendershot probably viewed himself as more of a basketball player than a football player.
“He is an outstanding basketball player,” Coach Coll said. “Early on when he was coming out of junior high and early in high school he probably looked at himself as a basketball player more than a football player. He is a very talented basketball player. He is very long which is good for football and it carries over to the basketball court. He is a physical, long kid on the basketball court with a lot of skill really.”
Coach Coll said that Hendershot is just as impressive off the field as a student and person as he is on the field as a player.
“He is a very good student and he is good in the classroom,” Coach Coll said. “He has a lot of energy. Just like on the field where he is dynamic athletically he also has a very dynamic personality. He is just a lot of fun with a great personality. We have a group of seniors that have played for us since a lot of them were freshmen and it is a very tight group. He's a big part of that.”
Indiana did not offer Hendershot until last month but Coach Coll said the way they went about recruiting Hendershot made a big impression on him.
“I mostly dealt with Coach (James) Patton,” Coach Coll said. “He is a very good recruiter and he was very honest and open about the situation. They took their time and really looked at him on film and at their camp. He was at camp there last year so they got to know him a little bit then, and then they got him down to camp again this summer and really liked him. They just did their job really well. We're a 3A school and I really appreciate the fact that they work hard looking for kids in the state that can play in the Big Ten regardless of what class level they played at. Like I said, Coach Patton was who I got to know and he did a great job so I was very impressed.”