Igras Eying Service Academies

Notre Dame Prep (Scottsdale, AZ) has proven to be a pipeline for service academy recruiting in the past, with two former Saints signing with Air Force from the class of 2008. Is the perennial Arizona powerhouse poised to send another recruit to Colorado Springs, or will a former connection to the east coast sound anchors away for one of the state's best defensive players?

As of right now, it's too early in the recruiting process to tell where defensive end Peter Igras will end up, but after receiving an offer from Army last week, it's clear that Igras is considering the service academies.

"I'm interested in [Army] right now, but I'm interested in all the academies. I like the schools and everything," said Igras in a recent interview with GoMids.com. Igras was offered a scholarship by Army assistant Andy Guyader following an in-school visit last week.

Igras led the Saints in tackles last season, finishing the year with 78 tackles while also recording six sacks. At 6-foot-3, 235-pounds he shows tremendous penetrating ability on film, as well as the capability to play at either the defensive end or defensive tackle spots. His highlight film and junior achievements earned him all-region honors, while his most recent offer from Army completes the service academy "trifecta". Already sporting offers from Air Force and Navy, Igras had nothing but positives to say about all three academies.

"Right now I really like the service academies," he said. "I like everything about them. I like how it's a great education and you get to serve your country. And [I like] the football."

While he likes all three academies, Igras said that he currently favors Navy over Army and Air Force. One of the reasons for his interest in Navy is his connection to the Maryland area, where he lived for nearly a decade when he was younger.

"With Navy, I like Annapolis," Igras said. "I used to live in Maryland so I like the area. I like the tradition they have with football at Navy."

Igras said he was never able to attend a Navy game as a child, but grew up rooting for the Midshipmen. "I remember as a boy watching the Navy-Army game. I'd get excited for that. As a kid, I used to root for Navy," added the prep star.

Igras is also being recruiting by several non-service academy schools, all of which have expressed interest in his versatility. With an extremely strong upper body and great initial burst off the snap, Igras proved that he could play at any number of positions on the line during his junior campaign last season, and said that several schools – including Idaho and Fresno State – have indicated that he could play at defensive tackle should he put on the necessary weight. Igras, who played tackle at times in 2008 and 2009, said he's not uncomfortable with the transition, and is willing to do whatever is necessary to help his future team.

"I've talked to some schools which have said if I gain some weight I could play defensive tackle, but I'll be playing defensive line in general. I played defensive tackle my sophomore year [at NDP] and a little last year because we needed some strong players on the inside."

As of right now, Igras ranks Navy and Air Force ahead of Army, although said he needs more time to check out all three schools. Aside from his interest in fixed wing aviation following graduation, Igras indicated that his interest in Air Force stems from the experience of two former Crusader players – Brandon Hirneise and Austin Briehl – who are now in Colorado Springs.

"With Air Force, two of my teammates who used to go to my high school play at Air Force right now," explained Igras. "I talked to them and they both like it."

While he likes Air Force, Igras said that Navy's recent on-field dominance of its sister service academies sets the Annapolis school apart in his mind. Originally offered by Navy assistant Steve Johns, Igras not only appreciates Navy's seven straight bowl appearances, but also the way in which Navy's players conduct themselves on the field.

"I love the way Navy plays, and how their [players] are hard workers," said Igras. "I like how they've beaten Air Force and Army the last few years…that helps."

Igras is currently making plans to visit both the Naval Academy and the Air Force Academy, and said that he hopes to camp at Navy during the summer. He said he has no timetable for a possible commitment, and stressed that he's keeping his options open. Still, the fast rising senior made no mistake of where things currently stand in his recruitment, and wasn't shy in naming an early favorite.

"I'm going to take my time, but I do like Navy. I really like them."

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