NC State has had remarkable success recruiting in the state of Pennsylvania. Head coach Chuck Amato, CB coach Greg Williams and TE coach Curt Cignetti all have extensive ties to the Keystone State and those connections have paid big dividends for the Pack as they've landed a half dozen of Pennsylvania's top prospects over the last several years. The State coaching staff will be hoping for continued success as they go after another of that state's top players for 2005.
DE/TE Tyler Tkach is a solid dual threat athlete that hauled in 20 pass receptions and nine touchdowns on offense while registering an impressive 11 sacks on defense. At 6-3, 240 pounds and boasting 4.9-second speed in the 40-yard dash, Tkach has shown impressive versatility and finished off 2004 with all-league, all-area and all-state honors. The rising senior's ability on both sides of the ball has also been reflected in his recruiting. NC State has offered a scholarship for Tkach as a TE while Pittsburgh has offered for DE. He recently told Pack Pride that he doesn't have a preference for position on the next level.
"Really, the position doesn't matter at all to me," Tkach said. "I just want to be able to play football."
In addition to the Panthers and Pack, Georgia Tech has also offered with heavy interest coming from Stanford, Michigan State, Connecticut, Iowa, Virginia, Virginia Tech, UNC, Notre Dame and Northwestern.
Although interest has come from around the nation, Tkach says two teams have emerged in the early race for his commitment.
"Pitt and NC State are the top programs right now," said Tkach. "Even if I were to only get the three offers, I'm happy with those but right now, State and Pitt are at the top."
Tkach talked about the two schools at the top of his list.
"With Pittsburgh, I just like their community," he said. "It's just like a football town. Coach Wannstedt is a great coach and their coaching staff is just phenomenal. I really like their football complex that they share with the Steelers."
"NC State's facilities were unbelievable. I've never seen anything like that. The coaching staff seemed like a great bunch of guys and would be good to play for. Even though they've been winning, they really seem like an up and coming program.
"Coach Williams is recruiting me and he's supposed to be coming up in the next few weeks. When I was down there for the spring game, he took me on a tour of the facilities."
Another fact Tkach has noticed is the Pack's recruiting success in Pennsylvania.
"They just got the two kids from Bethlehem Catholic and they got the Bedics kid last year so they've done a good job up here," said Tkach.
Although he's yet to settle on a future school, Tkach knows what he'll be looking for when the time comes to make a decision.
"I think I can play away from home so that's not a big deal," he said. "I'll really be looking for good academics and a good coaching staff. I've got to earn my playing time on my own so that's not important."
Tkach projects as an academic qualifier and plans to major in Sports Management or Business.