Coates Set To Explode

Youngstown Ursuline offensive lineman, Harold Coates, is a tough player in the trenches. Many programs have started to take notice of his talents.

While Ohio State has some official offers out to some high-profile offensive linemen for the 2008 class, not many are any better than Youngstown Ursuline's Harold Coates. The 6'-3", 315 pounder hasn't drawn an official offer yet, but the load of letters he's getting is keeping mail carriers in Northeast Ohio very busy.

"I receive letters from Penn State, Pitt, Cincinnati, Illinois State, Bowling Green and Youngstown State," said the mauling lineman. "I had a visit with Penn State where I met Jay Paterno. I also met (head coach) Jim Tressel and (defensive coordinator) Jim Heacock at Ohio State after practice while they were preparing for the national championship game."

The undiscovered gem likely won't be flying under the recruiting radar much longer. Not only is Harold set to take part in a combine, he has plans to attend summer camps at Ohio State, Penn State and Pitt.

The big man's mother, Rosanna Coates, knows there may be a good reason why her son hasn't enjoyed the recruiting attention some other Buckeye State prospects have received.

"I relocated my son and daughter to Youngstown from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in July of 2006," said Mrs. Coates.

While Harold grew up in the Keystone State, and is obviously interested in both Penn State and Pitt, he says he grew up rooting for Miami, Ohio State and Florida State.

While the Coates family hasn't been in Northeast Ohio long enough to get too familiar with the local recruiting gurus, Mrs. Coates knows exactly what features she's looking for in a Division-1 football program.

"The educational support programs and systems he gets, and the ability of a school to help him reach the NFL will be important factors," said Mrs. Coates.

Harold, who reports a GPA of 2.0, says he is currently concentrating on improving his academics and would also like to work on his conditioning. He also says he's set to take his first shot at the SAT soon.

The Irish star says he has played offensive tackle, defensive tackle and defensive end, and would be willing to play any of those positions in college. He has also played basketball and baseball but says he decided to give up both sports to concentrate on his gridiron work. His 330-pound bench press and nearly 500-pound squat has helped him serve up a lot of pancakes.

Harold's punishing style seems to be obvious to everyone who has seen him play.

"My nickname is ‘The Beast' because of my passion, desire and love for playing the game," Harold said. "It motivates me to dominate my opponents."

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