"I just finished talking with coach Claeys and I've committed to play football for the University of Minnesota," Huron (S.D.) athlete Bailey Schoenfelder said to GopherDigest earlier this afternoon. "I initially called coach Claeys to commit last night, but he was busy and just got back to me today. I really just want to be committed to Minnesota and get going with things as soon as possible."
Minnesota's head coach was excited to hear about the news that he'll have another playmaker on campus this fall.
"Claeys said he's excited to have me, and that now they'll get me on the board, he can't wait to get things going for fall," Schoenfelder explained to GopherDigest. "I'll be visiting Minnesota on May 6th now for the first time as a football player, so I'm excited to meet the coaches and soon I'll be moving in! As far as why I picked today, I had my mind made up and I didn't think it made any sense to put it off. Now I can get going on the workouts as they'll send me everything. What had be so sure on Minnesota was that it's a great program. I've got a connection there with my cousin and my brother is a former athlete there and he assured me it's a great experience. My dad is happy to see me take it to the next level and my mom is just worried about me getting banged up, but that's what mom's do."
Schoenfelder has unique story on how he ended up with the Gophers.
"I was really delayed on the recruiting scene because I was planning on serving in the military, but I was disqualified because of my hearing, so I was really grateful for the opportunity from Minnesota," Schoenfelder told GopherDigest. "I had already applied and been accepted earlier in the year. It's close to my cousin, one of my brothers attended there on a track scholarship, and it seems like a fantastic school and football program. I'm the one who actually reached out to them, so this is all pretty cool that it worked out the way it did."
Schoenfelder, a state wrestling champion as a senior, believes it's helped out his football career as well.
"Wrestling has done a lot for me," Schoenfelder told GopherDigest. "Physically it has helped me the most with being engaged, and up close and personal being able to control angles and using my hands and arms to get leverages. Mentally it has pushed me above and beyond as far as work ethic and guts go. I just want Minnesota fans to know that I'm more than excited to be a part of the Minnesota family, and Go Gophers!"