MN OT Paul Backowski Could Re-Open Recruitment

Paul Backowski, a 6-foot-7, 260-pound offensive tackle from Foley (MN) High who committed to Indiana in July, could see his recruitment open up with the firing of Indiana head coach Jerry DiNardo. Backowski was named to the Associated Press All-State first team and St. Cloud Times All-Area team. GoldenSports.Net caught up with Backowski's mother Emily.

Paul Backowski had 48 "pancake" blocks for a running team that featured a 1,400-yard rusher. He is a two-time All-Rum River Conference selection and was named the conference's Most Valuable Lineman.

Backowski committed to Indiana after attending its football camp this summer. He received a home visit from Indiana assistant Matt Canada Tuesday night. Emily Backowski said that Canada thought that a head coaching change could happen soon, especially with Notre Dame firing head coach Tyrone Willingham. Little did she know that change would happen less than 24 hours later.

Backowski is also playing on the Foley basketball team that finished 17-12 overall and 12-4 in the Rum River Conference. He averaged seven points and seven rebounds per game last season. The Falcons open the season against Chisago Lakes on Friday. Chisago Lakes defeated Mahtomedi (led by Troy Evangelist, who is getting Big Ten attention in football) in their season opener as 6-foot guard David Olson scored 41 points.

Emily said they called the Indiana coaching staff after the news of DiNardo's firing, but have yet to hear back. Backowski had planned to visit Indiana for his official visit January 21st.

Emily said that Arkansas still sends mail, but they had paid little attention to the recruitment with his commitment being solid. However, that could all change with the hiring of a new coaching staff.

Minnesota, Nebraska, Wyoming, Colorado, Northwestern and Iowa were among the schools that looked at Backowski in the spring and summer.

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