Benedict Receives A Great Compliment

Prior to his freshman year, Brent Benedict and his family decided to look for a high school that would give the Greenville, S.C. native the best opportunity to thrive in both the classroom and on the gridiron.

The Benedict family found themselves taking a visit to The Bolles School in Jacksonville, Fla., one of the most prestigious combination of academics and high school football in the country.

"After visiting, I figured Bolles was the place for me," Brent Benedict said.

What a good call. Over the last three years, everything has worked according to plan.

The 6-foot-5, 280-pound Benedict is getting a top-notch education, as well as standing out on the football field. The Florida All-State offensive tackle is up to around 25 scholarship offers, from the likes of Florida, Georgia, Clemson, Texas A&M, UCLA, and most recently, Notre Dame.

Benedict's father worked his way up in the airplane engine repair field, and sold the business he owned before the move.

"We moved two states away, and I'm thankful to both of my parents for that," Benedict said.

"My Dad is kind of retired. He tells people he's kind of a professional fisherman."

Perhaps Benedict will become a professional football player.

This past season, Benedict helped lead Bolles to a 14-0 record and the 2-A state championship. In 40-years of coaching, Bolles head coach Corky Rogers has the best won-loss record and the most state championships in Florida state history. But there is one thing he hasn't done.

"We're hoping to go back to state this year, and win another one," Benedict said. "He's never done that before, win back-to-back. We think we have a shot at it."

Notre Dame definitely has a chance to land Benedict, who right now says he's completely open regarding the recruiting process. He's been keeping in touch with assistant coach Ron Powlus over the last month, and last week, Benedict found himself on the phone with Irish head coach Charlie Weis.

"It was very exciting speaking to the head coach of Notre Dame on the telephone.

"He said he was excited about my game film, and liked the way I played the game, and he wanted to offer me early as a junior a scholarship to play at Notre Dame.

"Coach Weis coming from the National Football League, that's quite a compliment to me saying he's excited about my game film. He's coached the best of the best, so that was a great compliment to me."

Another thing the Irish might have going for them in the recruitment of Benedict, is that he has an Aunt and Uncle that lives in Indiana about an hour away from the Notre Dame campus.

This June at a family reunion to Pennsylvania, Benedict and his family will take about 10 days vacation to stop and see schools along the way and in the vicinity. Possible stops include Wake Forest, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Maryland, Rutgers, Penn State, Indiana, Ohio State, and of course Notre Dame.

"We're trying to cram in as much as we can," Benedict said. He has already been to Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Clemson in the past.

"My Dad has been to Notre Dame before, and he told me what a beautiful place it is. It has quite a tradition with their football program, and it's one of the best schools in the country you can go to. All those key elements make it a special place."

Benedict, who said it was "pretty cool," to get his Notre Dame offer on a gold sheet of paper, is looking to have his list of scholarship offers down to five or six favorites prior to his senior football season. From there, Benedict can focus on helping Bolles win another state title before making his decision sometime late next year.

"I want to go somewhere I know can prepare me athletically and academically," Benedict said. "Somewhere I can graduate from and say wow, I have a degree from there. Somewhere I can be successful at as many things as I can.

Location and climate won't be a problem.

"It's not like I'll stay in the Southeast exclusively," Benedict stated. "It's wide open right now. It's not that I want to stay in warm weather, cold weather would not be an issue as well."


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