Gutierrez Talks about UM; Recent QB Commit

Greg Biggins of PacWestFootball (pacwestfootball.theinsiders.com) recently spoke to Matt Gutierrez. The elite quarterback prospect talked about his recent visit to Miami, an update on his recruiting status, and also the recent commitment of quarterback Marc Guillon and how it may or may not affect his consideration of the Hurricanes.

Ever wonder what makes De La Salle such a strong program, arguably the nation's best year in and year out? Obviously talent helps and the Spartans always have a few Div I players every year including the nation's top linebacker prospect the past two seasons in D.J Williams (Miami) and Kevin Simon (Tennessee).

But more than talent, commitment and dedication is what separates the Spartans from other programs. Quarterback Matt Gutierrez is a perfect example of that. Over the summer, Gutierrez, 6-4, 210 pounds, took unofficial visits to Florida, Florida State and Miami and although he enjoyed the experience, he actually felt guilty about missing a few summer workouts.

"My coaches basically forced me to go because I didn't feel right about it," Gutierrez said. "The rest of the team was practicing and getting ready for the season and I felt like I should be there. They told me I needed to go and it would be better off for me in the long run since I had so many schools I was still considering and had a lot of questions.

"The trips were great. I honestly think you learn a lot more on an unofficial trip than you do on an official visit. With official visits, they make everything all nice with all these bells and whistles but that's not reality or how it normally is. Everything is fluffed up and you really don't know what's going there.

"With an unofficial visit, you get to see the campus, talk to regular students, tour the city without being shown just the hot spots. I mean, sure I met with the coaches too and talked to them about the program and saw the facilities, but what I saw was more of how it will be if I'm there as a student rather than just one wild and crazy weekend."

Definitely a man mature beyond his years. Along with the three Florida schools, Gutierrez is also interested in several other colleges including Tennessee, Oregon, Michigan, Cal, Washington, Notre Dame, Arizona State and Stanford.

"Those are the ones I'm hearing from or who have called me so far," Gutierrez said. "Everybody but Tennessee and Florida State has offered me. I was looking at USC and UCLA too but they haven't offered me or called yet and I know they've offered several other quarterbacks so I must not be on their list, which is all right.

"Tennessee and Oregon are the two schools I still need to see and they might have to be official visits because I really don't have time to take any more unofficial trips. We have an open weekend in two weeks and I was thinking about using that to trip to Oregon but I don't know if I want to be away from my team.

"We have Mater Dei the following weekend and while I'm on my visit, I'll be thinking I should be watching film or studying with my teammates. I need to talk to my coaches about it but I just don't want to be a distraction to the team or feel like I'm not preparing like I should be."

Gutierrez also made it clear that despite Miami receiving a commitment from quarterback Marc Guillon, that would have no effect on him still considering the Canes.

"No way, I'm not afraid of competition," Gutierrez said. "My feeling is, wherever you go, you're going to have beat someone out whether it's someone from your own class or someone already in the program. I'm confident enough in my ability that I'll found a way to beat out the other quarterbacks on the team whether it's with my ability on the field or mentally, I'll find a way somehow to win the job."

Gutierrez is a Student Sports Hot 100 selection and had a strong performance at the Student Sports Elite 11 over the summer. He's still regaining his strength and his passing form after having wrist surgery at the end of last season but got better and better every day. He was also one of the best of the high school group when it came to the chalk talks and is very sharp mentally and was quick to recognize different defenses and what plays would work against it.

As everyone knows, De La Salle will put their 113 game winning streak on the line October 6 when they head to Long Beach to play one of the most talented high school teams we've ever seen in Long Beach Poly. The game will be televised by Fox Sports Net and pits the top two teams in the country as rated by Student Sports and USA Today.

"I like our team, it's a different make up in that we don't have the great skill players we've had like D.J (Williams), Kevin (Simon), Atari (Callen) or Demetrious (Williams) but we've still got a lot of talent and we've looked good so far. Everyone is working hard and the team is coming together. We have some tough games prior to Poly though like Buchanan and Mater Dei so we're not looking past anyone."

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