Cards had right connections with Sunseri

Having the right connections is a critical factor to successful recruiting. That's why Louisville was able to wrap up Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania quarterback Sal Sunseri so early in the recruiting process.

Having the right connections is a critical factor to successful recruiting. That's why Louisville was able to wrap up Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania quarterback Sal Sunseri so early in the recruiting process.

Sunseri's father, Sal, was once an assistant coach at Louisville under Ron Cooper. While working for Cooper, the elder Sunseri worked with current U of L assistant Greg Nord. That relationship certainly helped pave the way for Sunseri's early commitment to the Cardinals.

There were also other connections to Louisville. Sal Sunseri, an assistant with the Carolina Panthers, currently works with former Louisville assistants Mike Gillhamer and Tony Levine. Gillhamer and Louisville certainly put in a good word for the Cardinals.

"Coach Nord coached at Louisville with my father and that relationship played a factor," said Sunseri. "Every memory I have of Louisville is great. I also developed great relationships and trust with Coach Brohm and Coach Kragthorpe.

"The coaches made it seem like I was their guy. They were text messaging me about every day and I called Coach Kragthorpe yesterday to talk. He told me that they would feel really happy if I committed. When I did, Coach Kragthorpe said it was great and that I made his weekend."

Sunseri, a strong-armed 6-foot-2, 200 pound quarterback, had offers from Florida State, South Florida and Southern Miss. Oklahoma was also showing considerable interest. Before making his decision, Sunseri considered his options carefully and made a visit to Tallahassee to get a first hand look at Bobby Bowden's program.

"I just felt like it was the right time," Sunseri said decision.. "I visited Florida State and saw what they had to offer because I wanted to make sure I was making the best decision. I've been thinking about making this decision for a while, and the more I thought about it everything just seemed to lead back to Louisville."

Now, Sunseri, Louisville's first verbal commitment in the Class of 2008, plans to help out Kragthorpe and the Cardinals on the recruiting trail. One player, 6-foot-2, 235 pound Christian Wilson, appears right at the top of Sunseri's list. Wilson, a four-star RB/LB from McKees Rock, PA, is one of the nation's best prospects.

"I talked to Christian Wilson (recently) about Louisville," Sunseri said. "I think he's a great player ad a good kid and he can play about any position on the field. He's definitely interested in Louisville and I'm going to continue to work on him. I'll do my part."

While Sunseri has good mobility outside the pocket, he'll fit the mold of recent Louisville passing stars like Brian Brohm, Chris Redman and Dave Ragone.

"I'm a drop-back quarterback who can also make plays with my feet if the pocket breaks down," Sunseri said. "I'm a coach's son and I'm great at reading coverages and my mental game is definitely there. I'm working on my footwork and keeping all my fundamentals sharp."

Sunseri led Pittsburgh Central Catholic to the Pennsylvania state semifinals as junior and thinks his team can do much better next season.

"I think we have a better team coming back and we have a new offensive system that will allow me to throw the ball a lot more than I did last season," Sunseri said.


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