Pennsylvania OL Jason Kates is a Quick Learner

Offensive/defensive lineman <b>Jason Kates</b> of Bishop McDevitt High School in Harrisburg, Pa., is a quick study in the game of football. It has paid off as some of the top programs in the country, including the schools in Michigan, are knocking on his door and asking him to come play for them after his prep days are finished. <br>

Most of the top players in high school have been at their craft since early grade school. Hard work and talent have given them the opportunity to go on and play football in college and beyond. Every once in a while there is an exception, a player with stellar natural ability that takes up the game late, and shines from day one. Offensive/defensive lineman Jason Kates of Bishop McDevitt High School in Harrisburg, Pa., the same school as top running back LeSean McCoy, is one of those shining talents. "I didn't start playing football until I was a sophomore," Kates said. "I wasn't a real big fan growing up, but the football coach kept hounding me to go out for the team, so I did."

Now the 6-foot-3, 308-pound Kates is receiving attention from some big-name college football programs. "I have offers from Rutgers, Pittsburgh, North Carolina State and Michigan State," he said. "I'm also getting a lot of mail from Michigan, Penn State and Northwestern. I really don't have a top favorites list yet." He said he would be attending the Junior Day at Maryland on Sunday.

Along with offers and mail, Bishop McDevitt is getting a lot of high-profile foot traffic. "Virginia comes by a lot, Maryland has been by and Miami has been by, but they aren't all here just to see me, they come by to see LeSean too." Kates said that Florida head coach Urban Meyer has called his school.

Kates added that he had been in contact with former Michigan defensive line coach Bill Sheridan, now with the New York Giants of the NFL. "We e-mail back and forth a lot," he said. "I like Michigan a lot, during Easter break I'm going to take a trip over to Michigan, Pitt, Ohio State, Michigan State and Notre Dame. I also want to go to the Michigan camp."

The big man said he plays right guard and defensive tackle, and prefers the defensive side of the ball. He reports a max bench-press of 405-pounds and a max squat of close to 500-pounds. Kates reports a 2.8 grade-point-average and said he would like to major in business marketing. He is scheduled to take the SAT on May 28.

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