"We have real good coaching here," Carufel said. "Ray Hitchcok, he played in a Super Bowl and really knows what he's doing. I owe it all to them. They're putting out two Division 1 linemen every year. Ryan Harris started at Notre Dame as a freshman and he was 245 pounds his senior year. They teach us well here."
Matt Carufel, 6-5 and 285 pounds, has been playing on the offensive line since his freshman year in high school. Prior to that, he was making his living playing fullback.
"I started when I was in about third grade," he said. "I was playing fullback until I hurt my hip. Plus, I kinda got too big."
Not a problem. Carufel has emerged into one of the top offensive line prospects in the entire country. He's rated as a 5-star recruit by Scout.com.
"I just work hard," he said. "I don't see myself as being that much different (from other linemen). I just put in my time in the weight room. I study the plays and I do a lot of running in the summer."
The talented lineman, who carries a 3.8 GPA and a 23 ACT score, is focused on winning a state championship but realizes he has a tough decision ahead of him with regards to the recruiting process.
"I'm just starting to schedule some official visits," he said. "I'm going to Notre Dame to see them play USC. I'm gonna visit Florida and Iowa and Minnesota."
The fifth visit is still up in the air for Carufel, who used to play hockey and baseball as well. One possibility is Miami.
"I might take a visit to Miami too," he said. "I don't know for sure yet. One of my coaches is good friends with their O-Line coach. They offered me real early and I've wanted to see them for awhile now."
Carufel, who also throws the shot and discus during track season, took an unofficial visit to UM during the spring.
"I stopped by there when I was in Florida for spring break and really liked it," he said. "I didn't get to see a practice because they got rained out. I didn't meet many people but I met a couple of the coaches. I really liked the campus. It's hard not to. They have nice weather there and just playing for Miami would be great. Blocking for the types of guys they have would be great, their ability to score touchdowns and things like that."
Carufel, who says distance won't play a factor in his final decision, is not ready to single our any favorites yet.
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