"Can you run the ball?"
"Can you protect your QB?"
Those are questions you do not want your respective coaches and fans having to answer often. Because the more often those two questions are asked, the more likely you don't have a sound group of O-line talent and depth, the more likely you're not going to win the "winnable" games much less the "big" games".
On KSU's road toward contending for Big 12 Championships one question that remains unanswered is in fact the offensive line unit's inability sometimes to open up holes in the running game, not to mention buying Josh Freeman the time he needs in the passing game, especially when tangling with the "big boys"…
Enter three high school offensive tackle commitments for the 2008 recruiting class -- Joe Caprioglio, Ethan Douglas, Brayden Burris -- to develop strength and long-term depth at a unit that is talent starved. Perhaps even more important, at least with regard to a quicker solution to KSU's O-line needs, is the recruitment of Cerritos (CA) community college stud left tackle target Phillip Garcia, our No. 1 take on the K-State Take-Board. And, low and behold, Ron Prince and Co. are on top of this kid and then some.
"I have had three different coaches recruiting me from K-State," Garcia sharing pertinent recruiting info said. "First, it was (KSU WR) Coach Dave Brock. He came to school initially but mostly to see me up close and grab film on me. Then, it shifted to (KSU OL) Coach Tim McCarty, who if I went to K-State would be my position coach. And, then almost immediately after I spoke with him I began to talking to Coach Ron Prince.
Now that's what I call showing love. The latest change in putting the full court press has been the emergence of Prince at the forefront of the Cerritos CC left tackle's recruitment, along with position coach McCarty both of whom Garcia spoke very highly of…
"Coach Prince comes across as confident, and very passionate and very straightforward about what he wants," Garicia shared. Prince's message is simply this: "He wants people who want to win, people who want to improve. He takes pride in helping his athletes meet their potential, getting the most out of them. He brags about developing D'Brickashaw Feguson -- who is similar to me in that he is also a big tackle prospect measuring about 6-8/330 – into a first round NFL Draft Pick."
McCarty is not much different, according to the true sophomore JC left tackle target.
"Coach McCarty is very much like Coach Prince," Garcia told KStateFans before adding "McCarty wants to teach, see guys progress. And, he comes across as real enthusiastic, energetic, and a guy I'm real cool with. I have talked to him the most. But I have probably talked to Coach Prince almost just as much."
Thoughts on his top four?
On K-State: "They were the first school to officially offer me and I have talked to them more than anybody else. They have told me how important I am to them and that they expect me to come in and learn quickly, make a significant contribution in 2008, and improve my overall game."
On San Diego State: "They've been recruiting me a lot too and I'd like to get out there for an official visit. I like Coach Inge and talked to him some. I guess I'd like to see K-State first and then see how the other programs I'm looking at stack up with K-State."
On Arizona: "I don't know much about them but I have been talking to Coach Smith and I like him."
On Arizona State: "ASU recruited me when I was coming out of high school and I got to take an official visit there. I love the stadium there, campus, facilities and the atmosphere. But they came on a little bit later in the process."
Needing only 12 hours this fall to graduate in December with "AA degree" Garcia has positioned himself perfectly to make an immediate impact in 2008. Post-Bowl off-season strength and conditioning will assist his transition in getting to know his fellow line-mates followed by plenty of reps in spring training, then summer workouts, including August two-a-days where he should be ready to prove worthy of earning a starting tackle position if not the third tackle off of the bench to bolster depth at the tackle position. If he is not yet ready for the starting left tackle position, he can elect to redshirt.
It's really an ideal situation for teams hoping to bolster their talent level by bringing in JC players in the spring, giving them that much more of an opportunity to maximize their opportunity to learn a different offense, different terminology, different blocking assignments.
Moreover, playing in the NorCal JC League which is considered the toughest league in the Cal JC circuit, and then competing in the Mission conference which is the most competitive conference in the state of California after sending teams from that conference and winning five straight NorCal Championships…
Sounds like the kind of JC left tackle prospect with the tools to make an impact on the D-I level, perhaps for KSU in the Big 12. We'll pick up the interview in a Part 2 report that will soon follow. And needless to say we delve even deeper and cover more ground with Garcia, our No. 1 "take" at the left tackle position on our K-State Take Board...
If you're just now finding your way to our "Part 1-Wanted: Phillip Garica", don't look now, but "Part 2-WANTED: Phillip Garica" story is also available.
[Note: The Link to our "Part 2-WANTED: Phillip Garcia, KSU Stud JUCO Left Takle Target" story is Available Now!]
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