Athletic LB Hearing From UM

A year ago Rhyan Anderson was one of the most heavily recruited defensive linemen in the entire nation. His recruiting visits to UM, Ohio State, Southern Cal, and Oklahoma proved that. He wasn't the only standout performer on Oak Creek's defense, as junior Travis Beckum was starting to make some noise.

Now Beckum, 6-5 and 220 pounds, is a senior and is tearing up opposing offenses so far this season. In helping his team to a 4-0 start, Beckum has 44 total tackles, three sacks, and one interception while playing outside linebacker.

"Our defense has been awesome so far," Beckum said. "We lost guys like Rhyan from last year but his replacement, Raymond Henderson, has really stepped up. It's like we haven't lost a beat. We've only allowed seven points in four games."

Beckum has tremendous athletic ability and plays a number of different positions.

"I'm mostly an outside linebacker on defense this year," he said. "On offense, I play tight end wide receiver but we run the wishbone so I really don't see the ball too much."

Beckum said it's his instincts that make him different than most players on defense.

"My awareness is what separates me," he said. "Watch me and you'll see me flying to the ball all the time. I only know one speed. I'm having fun out there."

The talented senior, who also plays basketball at Oak Creek, has been getting lots of recruiting attention so far.

"A lot of coaches are calling a lot," he said. "I'm getting a lot of offers and stuff like that. I'll probably start setting up some trips soon so I can take some during the season. I just haven't set any dates yet."

Beckum listed the schools he's currently interested in.

"I don't even have a favorite," he said. "I'm looking at Tennessee, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Michigan, teams like that. Miami."

Beckum said Miami's a little lower on his list than the other schools, mainly because he doesn't know a whole lot about the program or the area yet.

"I've talked to Coach (Shannon) and I like him and the coaches and what they've done," he said. "You see the success they have. All I know is that it's a great football program, Rhyan's there, and now they're recruiting me. Other than that, I dont know a whole lot about them yet."

Beckum said he won't start to narrow down his list of favorites until after he's taken some visits. Right now, UM is one of several schools fighting for one of those five spots.

Henderson is also being recruited by a lot of major programs, including many of the same ones who are vying for Beckum.

"That's my boy right there," he said. "We're looking at some of the same colleges so there's a chance we'll sign with the same one."

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