The 6-foot-4, 251-pound defensive end from Millard West High School in Omaha, Neb. left "very, very impressed" with what he learned about the Wildcat program on his first visit to Manhattan.
Apparently, the coaching staff was equally impressed with Phillips as he left campus with an offer in tact.
"The number one thing for me about Kansas State is the coach," said Phillips. "Coach Snyder has done an amazing job at Kansas State, but he's also one of the smartest men I've ever been around. When he brought me into his office and we talked about the football program. Then he asked me to tell him more about myself to get to know me better. I told him about some of the things I've done athletically like football and wrestling. I talked to him about a mission I went on to El Salvador. I just told him about some of my self-qualities like my maturity and my focus on education. He listen to what I had to say then let me know I had an offer."
"It felt so good because it was my first BCS offer. I was close to committing right there in Coach Snyder's office because he has so much to offer, but I decided to wait and do more research on the school."
Phillips said he started getting recruited by Kansas State during his junior season for the Millard West. He was the starting defensive end and offensive tackle for the Wildcats last year. On defense, Phillips had 122 total tackles, 81 solo tackles, 41 assisted, 35 tackles for loss, 11 sacks, 5 forced fumbles, and 16 tipped passes. He was selected first team All-State (Nebraska Class A) at defensive line, first team All-Metro Conference, and first team All-Academic by the coaches.
"Coach Seiler loves my motor and my awareness," Phillips said. "On each snap, no matter if it's a double reverse, quarterback sneak, or a Hail Mary I'm going full-throttle. I had a lot of tackles for loss last year and I'm able to get off the ball and push the offensive tackle back to make a play. They liked that about me."
Currently, Phillips holds four other offers from Ohio, South Dakota State, North Dakota, and South Dakota. He said he's also hearing from Nebraska, Iowa, Iowa State, Arizona State, Wisconsin, Northwestern, and Northern Illinois. Phillips hope he has things figured out by the end of the summer.
"If I feel like it's the right fit I'm not going to hesitate to commit," he said. "I'm looking at the coaching staff, how I relate to them, their style of coaching, and players they've put in the NFL. Education is also very important to me. I'm getting some Ivy League schools like Princeton, Harvard, and Yale. I'm definitely going back to Kansas State for camp this summer. I'll probably go to Nebraska, Ohio State, and Arizona State as well. All of the schools that offer me I at least want to check out. I'm hoping to make my decision by summer so my sole focus will be on my senior season."
An excellent student, Phillips sports 3.7 in honors and AP classes. He's also a star wrestler for Millard West. As a sophomore Phillips went undefeated (32-0) in the heavyweight division. In January he showed off his strength at the U.S. Army Combine in San Antonio, Texas winning second place in the bench press with 30 reps. This spring he'll compete in the discus, shot put and long jump. He's only seven feet from the school record in the discuss.