DT Klecko Earns Rutgers Offer, Names Leader

Another New Jersey 2013 standout left a Rutgers practice today with a verbal scholarship offer. Red Bank Catholic (Red Bank, N.J.) defensive tackle Josh Klecko recevied a verbal scholarship offer from head coach Kyle Flood and discussed how highly the Scarlet Knights rank in his recruitment.

To say Red Bank Catholic (Red Bank, N.J.) defensive tackle Josh Klecko had a good time at Rutgers today is an understatement.

Klecko made the short drive to Piscataway simply hoping to see a college practice and meet with Rutgers defensive line coach Jim Panagos. He left with a verbal scholarship offer.

"This is the best scholarship offer I could have gotten," Klecko said. "Rutgers is only an hour away from my house. I'd be close to my family and that's probably the most important thing for me. I was growing up wanting to play near my family. I want to take them to every game."

Klecko held verbal offers from Temple and Massachusetts, but said his newest offer is his favorite at this time.

"Rutgers is so close," said Klecko, who is focused on a proximity to home. "I think they're my leader right now."

Klecko said he did not consider a verbal commitment on campus.

The 6-foot-2, 235-pound defensive tackle wants to make a calculated choice and one that he does not regret, he said. That means taking his time and weighing his options.

"I'm definitely not ready yet," Klecko said. "I want to see if any other schools will offer me. Maybe that will open up some others schools if they see that Rutgers offered, but it's definitely looking good right now for Rutgers. They're probably No. 1 right now."

Klecko watched today's Rutgers practice with his father, Joe Klecko. Joe Klecko, who has his number retired by the New York Jets, played for more than a decade in the NFL and made four Pro Bowls.

Watching practice, the defensive line drills led by Panagos impressed both Kleckos.

"I thought it was awesome because I talked to Coach Panagos before and he told me he loves how I use my hands," Klecko said. "He told me some of his guys at Rutgers don't even use their hands like that. I was laughing because my dad teaches the exact same drills with me."

Klecko did not expect his 1-on-1 meeting with coach Kyle Flood to go so well. Not only did Flood verbally offer him a scholarship, but the first-year head coach offered a very flattering assessment of Klecko's skill set.

"It was a little intimidating, but I enjoyed it," Klecko said. "We had a really good conversation about why he wanted to offer me a scholarship. He said he liked how I used my hands. He said he's looked through a lot of defensive tackle's highlight films and he said out of all of them, I was probably the best.

"I was just ecstatic when he said it. The head coach of Rutgers actually said that about me. Out of all the guys you want to hear that from, it's him. I couldn't be any more excited."

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