Dennis Briggs is a 6-0, 185-pound athlete out of Shady Side Academy (PA). Last year, Briggs rushed for 450 yards, averaging 5.8 yards a carry. He also finished with 237 yards receiving, averaging over 15 yards a catch. Briggs scored seven total touchdowns.
Aside from competing with four-star running back Shai McKenzie who is in his same classification, a former teammate of his and close friend, Reggie Mitchell, is now at Wisconsin. He's used to being around big-time talent.
As he heads toward his senior year, schools are starting to take notice of his abilities and what he did as a junior. This spring, Mitchell is a member of the PA Swag 7-on-7team.
"We went to Philadelphia last weekend for a 7-on-7, and we did pretty good," Briggs said. "That was the most recent one. We might have one in the Monroeville area. I'm not sure about that yet, and we might also head to Columbus for another."
Of course, while in Philadelphia, Briggs had a chance to see a Temple and new Owls receiver coach Terry Smith. He says Smith was a valuable mentor to him, despite not even playing for him at Gateway.
"Oh for sure," Briggs added. "I didn't play for gateway, but coach Smith knows me from being in the area. He keeps in contact with everyone in the WPIAL; all the players from the WPIAL. It helps to have that."
Briggs also stopped by Pitt earlier this spring, one of his first stops. He says he has a very good relationship with Paul Chryst and his staff.
"I went to the Pitt practice over spring break, and I'm going to try and go up again real soon," Briggs said. "I've been in close contact with that staff. It's a school i really feel like I'm getting to know real well. (Linebackers) coach (Chris) Haering, he's been in touch with me through the whole recruiting process. I talk with him every two weeks. I'd say they're the closest school with me, in the recruiting process."
While the Panthers haven't offered yet, he's staying in close contact with them and Penn State, another school he's interested in. Briggs has also taken some visits to Ivy League schools such as Cornell and Yale.
"Ust coming from Shady Side, a lot of our guys are Ivy League guys," Briggs added. "Our school's academic reputation is pretty good, so a lot of Ivy League schools come in here."