SD Tackle Derek Farniok Attracts Gopher Offer

Derek Farniok, a 6-foot-8, 302 pound junior left tackle from Sioux Falls (SD) Washington, received a Minnesota scholarship offer last Saturday after attending the Michigan State game. Farniok has helped lead the Warriors to an 11-0 mark. GoldenSports.Net caught up with Washington athletic director Kevin Kennedy and head coach Brian Hermanson to learn the latest on Farniok's recruitment.

Derek Farniok comes from a football family. Older brother, Tom, plays center for Washington and is a Iowa State commitment. Their dad, Brad played at St. Cloud State, and their uncle at South Dakota State.

Washington has been dominant this year, outscoring their opposition 455-91 after a 42-0 first round playoff win over Yankton. Their closest game has been against O'Gorman 35-14 in the regular season finale. Washington could advance to their third consecutive Class AA state title game with a win over 10-1 Brandon Valley Saturday in the state semifinals.

Washington has come up just short the past two seasons in the title games, losing to crosstown rivals Lincoln 27-20 last year and Roosevelt 28-24 in 2007.

Washington athletic director Kevin Kennedy likes what he has seen from this year's team.

"This team is as deep and talented as any team I've been around in my 34 years and I played for 14 years. They have great depth and team chemistry and have progressed each game."

Farniok and his brother, who plays center anchor a high-powered spread offense for the Warriors. Kennedy think that the younger Farniok's best days are ahead of him.

"He is a young 16. He doesn't turn 17 until the first of May. He is just growing into his body. When he turns 20, he'll be a hell of a man."

Kennedy said that Farniok also throws the shot put and discus for the track team.

"He has played basketball in the past. I'm not sure if he will play this year. He's been a bit clumsy growing into his body, but he is getting better every day."

Farniok showed that he some ability on the hardwood, scoring 24 points for the sophomore team in a loss against O'Gorman this past year.
Head coach Brian Hermanson said that Minnesota extended a scholarship offer after Farniok attended the Gophers' game versus Michigan State.

"It was his first Division I offer. He has gotten Division IA offers like North Dakota. He is getting six of seven pieces of mail each week from schools such as Northwestern, Iowa, Iowa State, Stanford, UCLA, Colorado and Colorado State."

Hermanson said that Farniok is not just a good football player.

"He is a good student with a 3.92 GPA. He is going to take the ACT in February."

Hermanson said that Farniok is an outstanding prospect.

"At 6-foot-8 1/4 and 302 pounds, he's got the size that everyone looks for. He is very athletic for his size. He is a youngster. He will not turn 17 until he graduates. He could be a sophomore. I wish he was (laughing)"

Farniok attended the National Underclassmen Combine in Minneapolis along with his brother Tom and teammate Brandon Mohr. Tom Farniok was named the defensive line MVP, Mohr was named linebakcer MVP and Derek was the offensive line MVP. The three participated in Indianpolis in July at the Ultimate100 Combine.

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