Time Well Spent

SAN ANTONIO - One of the last times Kenneth Nixon will get to spend with his son Xavier before being deployed to Afghanistan was today at the U.S. Army National combine. A command sergeant major in the Army, Nixon leaves on Jan. 13th, and will be gone for a year.

Based off of the way Xavier Nixon performed inside the Alamo Dome on Friday, Kenneth could be coming home a little early to see his son end his prep football career as a U.S. Army All-American.

The 6-foot-7, 270-pound Nixon was dominant in one-on-one drills, and the offensive tackle from Fayetteville, N.C. is a virtual lock to be named to the all-combine team.

"I thought I did pretty good," Nixon said. He has roughly 15 scholarship offers including one from Notre Dame. "I could've did a little bit better in the one-on-ones, but offense is at a disadvantage because everyone knows it's a pass play, and they're just going to try and bull rush. But I did pretty good overall."

Nixon doesn't want to announce his college decision until his father returns to the states. It would be special to announce at the Army game, as his mother Fotini is also a master sergeant in the army.

"It would be great," Nixon said. "Not just for me, but because that's what he wants. It will be great to make him happy."

The Nixon's are already happy with their only son.

Nixon, who has a 3.0 GPA, recently received a visit from Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis at Jack Britt, before classes got out from winter break.

"It was great," Nixon said. Irish coaches also came to see him last spring. "Even though he couldn't talk to me, it felt good to know he came down here to see me and let me know they want me."

Weis has also let Kenneth Nixon know how much they want his boy.

"He told me he is their top offensive lineman in this recruiting class," Kenneth said.

Irish assistant coach Corwin Brown has chimed in as well.

"He told me Notre Dame needs me, and Miami wants me," Xavier said.

Brown also calls Jack Britt head coach Richard Bailey regularly.

"Pretty much everyday," Nixon said.

Nixon will have to sift through offers from the likes of Florida, Tennessee, Miami, Clemson, North Carolina, some of the others he has, and the other scholarships sure to come before reaching a decision.

Once a week, Nixon and his mother will have a video teleconference with Kenneth while he is in Afghanistan to talk recruiting and just to catch up on life.

"In a school, first and foremost is education and you know, the trust with the coaches," Nixon said. "And I don't know how to put this, that I believe (the coach) will stay there for a long period of time. That they're dedicated to that school."

Weis would like to set up one of those video teleconferences with Kenneth before he leaves the country.

"So he can tell me about the school and what they have to offer before I leave," he said.

Nixon got a little taste of what Notre Dame has to offer when he visited for a camp in the summer.

"It was beautiful up there," Nixon said. "It had more of a traditional feel.

"Right now, they're definitely in the race. They're a good school and they've got a good program. A great education. I could learn a lot going to Notre Dame."

Nixon said that North Carolina, Notre Dame, Clemson, Rutgers, N.C. State and Virginia Tech are the schools showing him the most love. Other than South Bend, he has had the chance to visit Clemson, North Carolina, N.C. State and Virginia Tech. He plans to check out the Irish campus again this summer.

"I don't really know a time frame, but I'm definitely going to go up there."


IrishIllustrated.com Top Stories