Gilmartin Enjoys Junior Day Visit

Charlotte (NC) Christian linebacker Ryan Gilmartin recaps his recent unofficial visit to NC State.

The same schools usually recruit against one another but when it comes to Charlotte Christian linebacker Ryan Gilmartin the list of schools involved is anything but predictable.

There is Wake Forest and that is not a surprise. Every year the Deacs offer a wide range of recruits from North Carolina. But then you turn to Gilmartin’s offer list and see Hawaii and Holy Cross. That is only the start of the surprises.

Gilmartin (6-0, 220) said more than ten assistant coaches visited Charlotte Christian in the last month. Some of them came from Arizona, Cal, Northwestern, Army, NC State, Wake Forest, Duke and Kentucky. Those schools have not offered other than Wake Forest but three of them are recruiting Gilmartin at a level beyond the others.

“I would say Arizona is recruiting me really hard. I’m working on a visit there right now. Obviously NC State is and I was just at the Junior Day there. I’ll be up at Boston College early spring probably and I would say they are recruiting me really hard too. I would say those three are recruiting me the hardest.”

NC State and Boston College are both easy to understand as ACC schools that canvass the state every spring, fall and winter. But what’s up with Arizona?

There is a good reason. John Turley is Charlotte Christian’s quarterback and Gilmartin’s teammate. Turley’s dad roomed with one of Arizona’s assistant coaches when they were in college together. When Turley’s father sent a link to Gilmartin’s tape to Arizona’s football staff in a casual email it sparked some interest.

Arizona co-offensive coordinator Rod Smith is their regional recruiter for a lot of the east coast including North Carolina and he passed along the link to their defensive coordinator Jeff Casteel. Casteel liked what he saw and made it known that he wanted Gilmartin to visit Tucson.

Not many players from North Carolina hear from Arizona. Fewer take visits. Only a very small number have paid their way on a campus visit so Gilmartin will be one of the few. If they offer Gilmartin he would not mind the distance. He has been looking into the school and likes the way they played this year in reaching the PAC 12 conference championship game.

“I love the defense they run. That 3-3-5 is pretty good against all the crazy offenses they see in the PAC 12.”
Visiting NC State is a little less trouble. Gilmartin was on campus for the fifth time recently when the coaches had a Junior Day. Before that most of Gilmartin’s visits to NC State were mostly about football games that were going on. Even on those trips he saw some of the school. Because there was not a football game taking place Gilmartin spent a lot more time seeing life outside football.

“I had a lot of fun. It was a good chance to see what the campus is life. It was my dad’s first time ever being there. It was a good chance to show him everything and see how game day works. We saw what the locker rooms are like and we saw what the coaches are like. He talked to Coach Doeren, Coach Faulkner and Coach Huxtable. There was more time on this trip. While I was there the coaches had a lot of praise for my tape. They like how fast I am. Coach Huxtable was going position specific. He was talking about putting me at Mike, Will or Sam. It would be interesting to play outside in college.”

Mike, Will or Sam does not narrow down the possibilities much but that underscores the coaches belief that Gilmartin could play different positions and maybe get on the field sooner by filling in where depth is weaker.

“I’m pretty comfortable up there with the coaches. I’ve developed a pretty great relationship not just with Coach Faulkner my recruiting coordinator but with Coach Huxtable and Coach Doeren. They’re great people. Every chance I get to talk to them is a good one.”

Boston College is the other school that talks to Gilmartin the most. When Gilmartin’s father was a high school football recruit he elected to attend Miami. Boston College was his runner up choice.

“I know it’s a great place and their program’s on the rise. They have a lot of successful linebackers that have come out of Boston College like Luke Kuechley and Mark Herzlich of the Giants. That’s definitely something I need to consider. I’m excited for my visit there. I need to see the campus.”

In November Gilmartin said his best visits to date had been to NC State and Penn State.

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