Saddler Talks Spartans

Cameron Saddler has seen his stock rise in recent weeks. After running a 4.44 at the Scout combine just a few weeks back, programs from all across the nation have been showing attention to the Gateway High School star. Earlier this week, Saddler narrowed his list of potential suitors down to 10 and the Spartans made the cut. GSN caught up with Saddler this weekend to see how he felt about MSU.

GSN: How would you describe yourself as a football player?
Saddler: I have a great knowledge of the game. My knowledge and the way I understand the game. A lot of guys have to get stuff repeated in order to comprehend things. With football, I see it one time and it's etched into my memory. I'd also say my heart and how I'm not scared of anything. With me being 5-foot-6, most of the guys out there are bigger than me. I can't go out there timid or scared or else I wouldn't be able to just go out there and play.

GSN: What were your stats last season?
Saddler: I had 2,500 all-purpose yards and 22 touchdowns last season. On offense I rushed for 1,100 yards and caught another 300 receiving. On special teams I had over a thousand returning kicks with five kickoff returns and two punt returns for touchdowns.

GSN: What summer camps have you attended?
Saddler: I've been to the Scout combine where I weighed in at 5-foot-6 and a buck fifty-six. I went to Penn State Nike and ran a 4.44.

GSN: What schools have offered you a scholarship?
Saddler: I've got fifteen offers right now, but, to be honest, I can't remember them all of the top of my head.

GSN: Is it true that you've narrowed your list down to 10 schools?
Saddler: Yes, it is. I narrowed it down to Michigan, Michigan State, Kentucky, Virginia, Syracuse, Akron, Oregon, Louisville, West Virginia and Colorado are my top 10. All 10 of them have offered me a scholarship.

GSN: Is your top 10 list set in stone?
Saddler: It's a set list unless one of my dream schools comes into the picture. The only teams that could still get in it would be a Miami, Florida or Florida State.

GSN: Have you visited any of the schools in your top 10?
Saddler: I've been to Virginia and Michigan. We (Saddler and cousin Shayne Hale) actually went to Virginia for junior day and went to a basketball game. After the game we all went out with the coach and talked to Coach Groh for a while. It made a big impact because he's a nice, cool guy. After that we went out to eat with Keith Payne, Virginia's tailback. Then we just rode around Virginia and saw all that it had to offer.

GSN: Do you have any plans for the rest of the summer?
Saddler:I'm going back to Virginia on the 16th. My team has a 7-on-7 at Syracuse so I'll make that a visit. I'll visit Louisville and Kentucky at the same trip because they're close. I'll do the same thing for Michigan and Michigan State. I won't camp at any schools this summer. I'm just going to be going up for some visits. I'd like to have it all done by June so I could get it out of the way.

GSN: Are you and your cousin still thinking of going as a package deal?
Saddler: We're going to have to make the best choice for each of us, but, with the situation we're in right now, it looks like the best situation will be at the same school.

GSN: If Hale doesn't list Michigan State, how would that change your view of the Spartans?
Saddler: Like I said before, we each have to make the best decisions for each of us. We'd like to go to school together, but, if the best situation for me isn't the best situation for him, we'll have to do what's best for ourselves.

GSN: How did Michigan State offer you?
Saddler: My coach writes all my scholarship offers on his board. I came into my coaches' office and Coach Tressel was in there. He sat me down and was like, ‘I want to tell you straight up that our head coach wants to offer you. He just wants to get you on campus so he can do it in person because he's a very personable guy.' I came back to the coaches' office later in the day and he had written them up on the board.

GSN: How often do you talk to coaches at MSU?
Saddler: I talk to Coach Tressel about once a week. He probably texts me about once a week. He told me to expect a call from Coach Dantonio soon.

GSN: Have you determined what criteria will be your focus when it comes to selecting a school?
Saddler: I need a coach that I feel comfortable with. Right now everybody is being nice to me because they want me at their school. I'm trying to find out who's legit and who's just feeding me crap. I'd also like a good location where my parents can come see me. My parents don't have a problem moving to wherever I go, though.

GSN: Do you have a time frame for trimming your list to five schools?
Saddler: My coach will want to narrow the list down again by the end of summer time. When I get down with the unofficial visits I'll cut it down to five. I'd like to get all my official visits done early in the season and make a decision as soon as possible. I need to make sure it's the right decision before I commit though because I don't want to be doing any de-committing or anything like that.

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