U of L staff pumped about two TE signees

University of Louisville football coach Bobby Petrino said the tight end position was a major need for his staff in this recruiting period. So, the Cardinals signed a pair of prospects the staff is elated to have in the program. Cardinal Authority takes a look at the two prospects.

Not long after accepting the job as head coach of the University of Louisville football team, Bobby Petrino scanned his current roster.

And one of the major needs for the team was at the tight end position. U of L only has three tight ends on the roster and one of those - Hunter Bowles - missed all of last season after having neck surgery.

Senior Gerald Christian and sophomore Keith Towbridge are the only other returning tight ends in the U of L program.

"We had a real need at the tight end position," Petrino said. "We had to get a couple of guys in to help that that position."

The early returnees from the staff are the two additions are "just what we need" to help Towbridge and Christian shore up the tight end position next season.

The Cardinals signed Montgomery, Ala., Carver High School tight end Charles Standberry and Columbus, Ohio, Hamilton Township tight end Micky Crum, who had been committed under the previous staff and stayed committed to the Cardinals.

"They really are a great match," Petrino said of the two TEs. "We have a guy who is big and athletic and can catch (Standberry) and then a guy (Crum) whose a move guy, kind of a player who can not only tight end but also H-back or even slot receiver. He's going to continually get bigger and bigger as he goes."

The 6-fot-3, 216-pound Standberry was a late addition. He had been committed to Mississippi and took a visit to Alabama on Jan. 24. But on the weekend before signing day, Standberry visited the Cardinals and committed not long after finishing up his visit.

"He's really going to be a nice addition," tight end coach Pete Nochta told the crowd at the U of L recruiting party on Wednesday night. "He's a big, strong, physical kid who can run. Watch this (he said pointing to a video clip), it's like DeVante Parker (catching a fade route)."

The staff believes Standberry can help right away and could also split out some as a wide receiver-type of tight end.

As a senior in high school, Standberry had 45 catches for 665 yards and nine touchdowns. He also had offers from Boise State, Kentucky, Mississippi State and Southern Miss.

Petrino said the 6-4, 250-pound Crum, who was also a defensive standout in high school, is going to get bigger and stronger and will be a "key guy" at the tight end position. He will likely lineup some in the backfield as the H-back in the Petrino offense.

As a senior, Crum had 600 yards receiving and nine touchdowns, while also rushing for 168 yards and three TDs. He had 78 tackles and 16 sacks on defense for Hamilton Township.

Petrino said the two tight end signees "filled our needs," at that position.

Christian, a senior-to-be and former Florida transfer, had 28 catches for 428 yards and four touchdowns in his first year of action for the Cardinals. Towbridge played sparingly as a freshman but the previous U of L staff had high expectations for his future.

The status of Bowles is uncertain, while U of L lost graduating tight ends B.J. Butler and Ryan Hubbell. Zeke Pike also played the position some last season but wasn't with the team the final few games and is no longer on the roster.


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