Phenix City (Ala.) Central High School athlete Traveon Samuel became the first official member of the University of Louisville 2015 recruiting class when he signed papers to attend the school last month.
A three-star prospect, Samuel is ranked as the No. 73 running back in the '15 class nationally. In 10 games as a senior, Samuel had 1,764 all-purpose yards including 861 yards rushing and 11 TDs and 553 yards receiving and three more scores.
This weekend, he is one of a group of future Cardinals participating in the 28th annual Alabama v Mississippi All-Star game. However, while he'll be wearing the No.1 jersey for the Alabama All-Star team, he won't be playing in the game due to his continuing rehab from a broken fibula suffered late in the season.
Despite being unable to play in the game, Samuel has progressed enough that he is participating in some team drills this week and learning some new things in the process.
“I'm about 70 percent,” he told Scout.com on Tuesday afternoon. “I'm not back at full speed. I can run and cut a little bit.
“I'd like to learn a lot because there are a lot of great players here. Great players do things different, so there's a lot I can learn.”
The recruiting process came to a halt when Samuel signed his paperwork to become a Cardinal and interest from others trickled away.
“UCLA tried a little bit, but I was 100 percent sold in,” said Samuel, who anticipates arriving in the Derby City on January 11.
His focus right now. Help his Alabama All-Star teammates get a victory this weekend and then all the attention turns towards his future team.
“Hopefully get the win this Saturday and prepare my body to get ready for college,” he said.
Samuel, who made his official visit with U of L this past weekend, entertained scholarship offers from Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida State, LSU, Nebraska, South Carolina and a host of others before signing with Louisville.
"Go Cards! They're my number one," he said.