Beachum Has A Plan

PITTSBURGH -- Brandon Beachum just about has this year's remaining months planned out, and one college certainly should benefit greatly from it.

Beachum, soon to be a senior at Cardinal Mooney High School in Youngstown, Ohio, hoped to narrow his college choices to a top 10 in the next few weeks and then get down to just a few before announcing his selection sometime in November. This was important for the blue-chip linebacker, because he plans to enroll in college in January, 2008.

"By enrolling at a school in January, that basically will allow me to get a head start on everything, football and academics, without as much pressure as there is in the fall,'' Beachum said. "So, I set my high school schedule for that purpose. I think that will be the best situation for me and the school.

"I have 24 offers right now, and they started coming after my performance at the Scout Combine last year. I guess I opened some eyes. All the stats and word of mouth from scouts and recruits and the on-line stats got me some real good exposure. So, all that really helped me in recruiting.''

Beachum starred again at this year's Combine at the UPMC Sports Complex. While he wasn't among the fastest competitors, his aggressiveness in the one-on-one drills was among the best. He is extremely athletic and is a big hitter.

"I came here to compete,'' Beachum said. "That's the way I look at it. A lot of guys hope to get offers. Fortunately, I'm not in that situation. So, I can just come out here and compete, while other guys are trying to get looked at.

"I look at it like I have a little advantage as far as that situation goes, but at the same time I would go out and compete just as hard as anybody else even if my situation was different. I try to give my best all the time.''

Beachum has taken several visits to schools. He watched a Pitt scrimmage in the spring and had a good time there. Beachum had an overnight trip to Michigan State as well that he really enjoyed. He also spent a day at Michigan for a practice session and was impressed with them as well. He also visited Penn State for its junior day and toured the campus for a while.

"I had been there before, but I never took the tour like I did for the junior day,'' Beachum said. "So, that was really nice. I knew a few players up there. (Quarterback) Daryll Clark is from my area, so I got to meet up with him and some other guys after the tour. That worked out real well for me.''

Beachum hopes to take more visits to help him narrow his college choices.

"Those visits will help me determine what the different schools have to offer,'' Beachum said. "That can only make my decision easier, when I have something to compare it to, so I'll try to take more visits this summer.''

Beachum believed that his parents, Lock and Michelle, would be behind him no matter which school he decided to attend. He has solid support from Cardinal Mooney's coaching staff as well, but that's not all.

"I also have some peers who have been going through the same recruiting process,'' Beachum said. "Michael Zordich, Dan McCarthy and Taylor Hale are all big recruits right now, from my same class. So, we all kind of help each other out. That makes it a lot easier.''

And it also should be quite helpful as Beachum plans out the ensuing months.

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