PA Athlete Gaining Interest

Pennsylvania's <b>Ryan Purvis</b>, of Lancaster Catholic High School, is getting attention from major Division I programs. The athletic tight-end prospect recently led his school's basketball team to the AAA state championship.

Name: Ryan Purvis
Position: TE
Height: 6'5"
Weight: 235 pounds
40-yard dash: 4.75 - 4.8
School: Lancaster Catholic HS, Lancaster, PA

Although last season was head coach Bruce Harbach's first at Lancaster Catholic, it didn't take him long to realize the special player he had in Ryan Purvis.

"He played tight-end, defensive-end and outside linebacker for us," said Harbach.  "He also punts and kicks for us too because he's such a good athlete.  He was 2nd Team All-Conference as a tight-end."

Ryan totalled 48 tackles on defense including 5 sacks.  He also added 2 pass breakups and 2 fumble recoveries.  On offense, he made 21 receptions for 322 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Purvis is generally considered to be a tight-end prospect.

"I sent out 10 to 15 tapes on him, but right now everybody's just interested in him because he's an athlete.

"He's a great athlete, good speed, great hands and his ability to work in the open space is really good.  He has great ability to find the open spot, go over the middle and catch the ball, or go down the middle straight and catch the ball.

"With them winning the state basketball championship, it just increases his ranking as far as being a good athlete.  They were 35-0 and AAA state champs.  I don't know what his points per game was, but the last two games, the eastern final and the state final, he scored around 50 points total."

Of course, in addition to athletic ability and good hands, an effective tight-end at the college level must possess good blocking skills.

"He's an average blocker right now, but that's one of the things that we're going to work on in the off-season.

"Nobody has offered him, but we sent out film to Penn State, Pitt, he's going to visit Penn State and Pitt unofficially for their junior days, Syracuse, Duke, Maryland, Purdue, Michigan, that's just some I can name off-hand.

"Penn State's been in to see me, Pitt has talked with me, so has Michigan.  A lot of them will come down in May when they can come visit.  Once the word gets out on his athletic ability, there's going to be a lot of people.

"We plan on taking a few unofficial visits this summer.  He and I are lining some things up, to go visit places.  He's just keeping an open mind right now and seeing what's going to develop over the next couple of months."

Ryan is also a terrific student.

"His grades are outstanding.  He has a 3.9 GPA and he scored an 1130 on his SAT.  He's a little upset because he didn't get 1200,  so he's going to take it again.  That's the kind of kid he is."

Penn State assistant coach Bill Kenney made a trip to Lancaster Catholic to speak to Coach Harbach about Purvis.

"He likes him because he's an athlete.  They haven't really seen him in person, so that's why he's going up there to visit.  And, I believe he's going to go to Penn State's camp this year.

"I think his parents have season tickets to Penn State, so he goes up there quite a bit.

"I've coached tight-ends for years.  I coached Chris Snyder who went to Penn State, I coached John Gilmore who went to Penn State and I coached Andy Rowen who went to Duke.  He's just right in that mold."

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