Adam McLean began playing football when he was six. It was a blast.
As he readies for the the second half of his high school career, McLean continues to suit up for the enjoyment of the game. These days, there's just more on the line.
College programs from around the country are offering scholarships to the outstanding defensive lineman. With them, come expectations.
"It's definitely mind-blowing," McLean said. "I play football because it's what I love to do. Then the offers come in and it becomes a full-time job."
McLean isn't complaining. He's just working harder than ever to fulfill his potential.
"I train hard," he said. "My parents tell me that I'm deserving of it. I feel like I'm deserving of it. It's a really great feeling how a bunch of these schools are interested in me and want to have a chance to help me better myself, not only as a player but as a student-athlete."
The 6-foot-2, 267-pound McLean picked up a scholarship offer from Iowa on Thursday morning. The Hawkeyes followed Akron, Florida State, Nebraska, North Carolina State, Old Dominion, Rutgers and Virginia Tech in extending an opportunity to the Quince Orchard (Gaithersburg, MD) High standout.
"Iowa has been recruiting me for the past couple of weeks," McLean said. "Coach (Chris) White came in and talked to me. We spoke on the phone a couple of times."
The Class of 2015 member said he hit it off with the Hawkeye assistant.
"He's a greet guy," McLean said of White. "He's fun. He's energetic. And he's serious when it's time to be serious. That's one of the vibes that I picked up from Coach White.
"Whenever we talk, we always have a good conversation. He brings an enjoyment to every conversation, which is really good."
McLean said he spoke with defensive line coach Reese Morgan when he called White.
"They told me I played the game the way it's supposed to be played," McLean said. "I have a very high motor. I'm very aggressive. They say I play like a beast. That's what they look for and that's what they like."
McLean plays end and tackle on the Quince Orchard defensive line. He said he's open to either or both in college.
McLean can't sign a binding national letter of intent with a school until February of 2015. He's using the extra time to bond with the programs.
"All of the coaches that are recruiting me, I call all of them," McLean said. "I get a feel for some of who they are. It's not always just talking about me or everything about football. I like when a coach can put football to the side and I can put that he's a coach to the side and we can talk just as people."
McLean so far only has planned two trips this summer. He'll be at Nebraska on June 14 and Ohio State on a date to be determined. He's undecided on when he might commit.
"Part of me wants to wait until national signing day," McLean said. "But I feel like if the school I feel most comfortable with offers me, I'll visit and maybe I'll commit sometime next season or after the season. We'll see."
Communications, psychology and public relations are three majors that interest McLean.
"I feel like I'm a people person," he said. "I might as well get into a field where I can use that in my education."