Bozich--'He's an ‘NFL' 4.6 guy'

There are just a few administrative details to iron out, but according to Hinsdale Central coach Tony Lombardi, he expects quarterback Joey Bozich to be in UNC camp by the end of the week. Lombardi, who once coached former Carolina great Jason Stanicek, spoke to <I>Inside Carolina</I> on Monday.

"In my mind, he'll be there this week," Lombardi said. "I know he wants to be there. I really think it's a win-win for everybody. He's one heck of a player.

"He's in this morning to get all of his transcripts and everything in. If he can get everything in, I think he'll be there. There are all sorts of things they have to get done."

Lombardi said Joey Bozich is "fine academically," but his immediate matriculation to UNC will depend upon scholarship allocation issues and how they transfer from year-to-year. But all indications point to him getting on campus very soon.

Bozich was one of two quarterbacks to commit to Carolina this past weekend. But unlike Cade Thompson, who is an admitted straight dropback passer, Bozich can run as well as pass, with a great ability to create with the ball in his hands.

"He's an ‘NFL' 4.6 guy. He's going to run 4.6 every time out of the box," Lombardi said. "He's very strong running with the football. He's a Daunte Culpepper-type guy. And, he's got outstanding arm strength.

"If a quarterback is not able to do something under duress, he's useless. That's what [Bozich] brings to the table."

Bozich played behind a three-year starter, Brad Bower, who is a now at Illinois on scholarship. But despite a stellar senior campaign, Bozich had plenty of interest, but no offers.

"The thing is, he only had one year to play; but that doesn't mean he can't play," Lombardi said. "By the time his season got over with – even though his tape was sensational – we couldn't get anybody to look at him. No, no, that's not true. We got ‘eight million' people to look at him and go ‘Wow!' But we couldn't get anybody to scholarship him, especially at that position. Those decisions are made the previous spring. So, he was kind of left with nothing.

"I was college coach for 17 years and I know a little about the process and these days in the age of early commitments," he said. "It used to be we went out, and based it on your senior year. Now we've got all of these combines and early schedules to keep."

Lombardi and Bozich's father, Joseph, began searching for another way. They decided on the prep school route at Bridgeton in Maine, and to let him show his wares at that level.

"That was the path we were on, and then this just unfolded," Lombardi said. "They had been able to evaluate, and re-evaluate on him on tape."

The Tar Heels were already interested in Bozich as a mid-year transfer. But when 2004 commitment Michael Rozier told the UNC coaches he would sign with the Red Sox just last week, they invited him to get in camp as soon as possible.


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