Travis Bodenstein had seen the University of Kansas campus before.
Sure, he was there for Junior Day in February, when Head Coach Turner Gill personally offered the 6-foot-5, 295 pound offensive tackle
prospect a football scholarship. So he knew his way around.
But to hear him tell it, he hadn't really seen the campus. At least not
until last weekend, when he made a return trip with members of his
family for the KU Spring Game.
"I'd been there in February when I got offered, but it was kind of
rainy that day," the Shiloh Christian (AR) High School product said. "I
got to go up there last weekend and see the campus and I thought it was
beautiful, to see it all bloomed out and stuff. I really liked it."
Bodenstein currently owns a handful of Division One scholarship offers
in addition to the one from Kansas. East Carolina, Memphis and Tulsa
have all extended formal offers as well, with the likes of Auburn and
Arkansas showing interest of their own.
That he has long held the Jayhawks in high esteem is in part due to the
relationship Bodenstein has forged with first-year offensive line coach
J.B. Grimes, his lead recruiter.
He and Grimes keep in touch frequently, he said. And in fact,
Bodenstein has been impressed with everything he's seen from the new
coaching regime thus far.
"I think they're all great coaches and from what I've heard, from what
Coach Gill has done in the past and what Coach Grimes has done in the
past, they're pretty successful coaches," he said. "And they
show (themselves) to be godly men with good morals, and that connects
with me a lot."
Under the guidance of Head Coach Josh Floyd, Shiloh Christian employs a
spread offense to great effect – and the cornerstone of their offensive
line is Bodenstein. In addition to his natural size and strength, Floyd
noted it was his outstanding versatility that made him such an asset in
"Obviously, he's a big guy," Floyd explained. "I think what makes him
special is he's very mobile for his size. He's a very good pass
blocker. We run a spread offense, and he's a guy out there making
blocks on corners and safeties."
As for the Kansas offense, Bodenstein liked what he saw from offensive
coordinator Chuck Long's unit during last weekend's Spring Game.
"I think I'd fit in great from the style of offense they run," he said.
"They run a mix of everything. They'll get in the shotgun but they get
down and run the ball too. It's a good offense, and I think I'd fit in
The coming weeks may see an end to the junior's recruitment, who hopes
to make his college decision sooner rather than later. Spring football
opens at the high school level in Arkansas May 17, and runs for two
weeks. Though he's still gathering information from schools, Bodenstein
anticipates a decision will come by mid-June.
That being the case, the Jayhawks appear to be in a good position with
the sizable talent from the Natural State.
"KU was awesome," Bodenstein said, of last weekend's unofficial visit.
"I loved it. It's probably one of my favorite schools."
"KU was awesome"
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