Offer On The Way For OL

Murray, Kentucky offensive lineman Cory Zirbel remembers getting his first scholarship of the year back in the middle of March. "It came from UK," Zirbel said of the in-state Wildcats. "After that, they really started pouring in."

By mid-May, Zirbel had a offer list that could match almost any offensive lineman in the South. However, he still hadn't heard from one school he was very interested in -- Miami. He took action.

"I sent my tape to the coaches down there and then one night out of the blue I got a call from them," he said. "We've kept in touch ever since and then I got a camp brochure in the mail. I wanted to go down there and check it out and maybe give the coaches a better look."

He did that and more. After spending three days at UM's camp, Zirbel was named the camp's MVP among offensive linemen. It resulted in a nice conversation with head coach Larry Coker on Monday.

"He called a few of us into his office," he said. "I know Carlton Hill was another one because I talked to him. He basically said how he liked me and that they weren't allowed to hand out scholarships at the camp. But he said he'll be putting one in the mail for me so I should have it any day. I was very excited because not only did that become No. 26 for me on offers, it's the one I really wanted."

With UM throwing its name into the hat, Zirbel said he now favors two programs over a host of others.

"I had Michigan No. 1 on my list for a long time but now that Miami offered, they're even with each other," he said. "There's a good chance I'll sign with one of those two. I'm going to Michigan's camp with Jonas (Murrell) later on."

Zirbel measured in at 6-6 1/4 and 301 pounds. He tested well -- running a 5.14/40, jumping 27 inches, and doing a 4.81 shuttle. However, it's during drills that Zirbel really made a difference.

"I really loved working with Coach Kehoe," he said. "That's my kind of guy. He's really intense and all the players love him. He's a true OL guy, he loves his linemen. I'm honored to know that he thought so much of me."

Zirbel, who plays on both sides of the ball in high school, said he's trying to become even better this season. He's already pretty good.

"I just wanna become the best player I can be so I can help our team any way I can," he said. "I learned a lot this past weekend. I think I'm a little different because of my athletic ability. I saw a lot of huge kids, 6-5 and 6-6 guys that really had trouble moving and getting out of their stances. I was really surprised. I also play basketball and that really helps a lot with my footwork and agility and stuff like that."

Zirbel also throws the shot and discus and finished as one of the state's best.

"I know it's only Kentucky so it's not like what you see in Florida but I won the state title in the disc," he said. "I threw it 146 in states but I was sick the week before and lost like nine pounds. My best throw was 161. In the shot, I finished second. I've thrown it 52-8."

Zirbel is a full academic qualifier.

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