Nova Talks Role In Recruiting Bosco's Big 5

Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.) quarterback Gary Nova will enroll at Rutgers next month, but since committing to the Scarlet Knights in early January, he has had the chance to sell five Ironmen stars from the 2012 class on the Scarlet Knights. So, what is Nova's approach to Darius Hamilton, Elijah Shumate, Yuri Wright, Leonte Carroo and Mike Strizak? He filled in on it.

Standing 6-foot-2, 216 pounds and wearing a white long sleeve shirt and gray sweats, Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.) quarterback Gary Nova stood out while observing Thursday's practice at Rutgers.

He is the quarterback of one of the signature high school programs in the nation, a Rutgers signee, and at this moment arguably the most influential person when it comes to the Scarlet Knights' recruitment of Don Bosco Prep's talented 2012 class.

Four of those players – five-star defensive tackle Darius Hamilton, four-star safety Elijah Shumate, four-star receiver Leonte Carroo and three-star linebacker Mike Strizak – joined Nova at the practice.

A fifth, three-star cornerback Yuri Wright, who holds two dozen offers, wasn't ton the visit but is also being recruited hard by Rutgers. Hamilton, Carroo, Wright and Shumate are each rated in the top seven at their positions in's 2012 class.

Nova, who will enroll at Rutgers on May 31, sees the quintet on a daily basis and can also speak to them about the Scarlet Knights.

However, he isn't giving his former Don Bosco Prep teammates the hard sell. He has a different approach.

"Don't try to be too pushy," Nova said. "Rutgers is a great school. It has a lot to offer from the football program, and academic-wise. For me, I'm just trying to get the guys from Bosco around the program, around the coaches as much as I can.

"Hopefully, they're going to like it and end up being a Scarlet Knight."

This wasn't the first time a few of Don Bosco's elite players joined Nova on a trip to campus.

Several of them accompanied Nova to campus in early February for unofficial visits.

"I just bring them there," Nova said in downplaying his role. "When they're there, I barely talk to them. I may ask them how the meeting goes or something like that, but I don't try to push it on them or tell them, ‘Look, this is better than this school,' or stuff like that.

"I let them see for themselves, and hopefully at the end of the day, they like Rutgers the most."

Nova said he learned the approach from his own recruitment, beginning with his commitment to Pittsburgh 11 months ago and his change to Rutgers after the Panthers' coaching staff changes.

He said a big key with his recruitment, especially his initial decision to attend Pittsburgh, was the low-key approach a few former Don Bosco players and current Panthers took toward him.

"When I visited Pitt, they would show me around," he said. "And then my coaches from Don Bosco, they go through the recruiting a lot and they helped me. I had good people around me."

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