Pollock pledged to Rutgers coach Kyle Flood an hour before he led the team out of the tunnel for a historic win over Michigan.
“I didn’t believe how much it would impact me,” Pollock said. “I talked to [2016 offensive line commit] Ted Field about it and he was saying how it is the biggest weight off his shoulders when he did it. I didn’t believe it until I actually felt it for myself.
“I’m playing 1,000 times better in practice now. I’m flying around the field with more energy. I’m not worried about ‘oh, what are colleges going to think if I don’t make this play?’ Obviously I still have to play my best because that’s who I am, but it’s way less pressure.”
The Pollock, Field relationship took shape while both were on campus during the Penn State game. The two quickly became friends, and plan to room together starting in January of 2016 as early enrollees.
“I don’t think we stopped talking from the Penn State game to the Michigan game,” Pollock said. “We just text and tweet each other. We’re going to room together and we’re talking about getting other recruits in the 2016 class. A national championship is the ultimate goal, and we both are people that demand the very best. I think that’s another great thing about Rutgers is that they recruit quality people.”
Will Pollock purchase matching “Chop Nation” overalls?
“People ask me that, but I don’t think I can rock them like Ted,” Pollock said. “That’s his thing.”
The weekend was fun, but not something Pollock is ready to repeat any time soon. After a busy homecoming Friday at Dr. Phillips, he woke up at 4:30 a.m. to get to Rutgers in time for a full Saturday. He followed the same schedule to make sure he was home in time for school and football.
“It was definitely crazy,” Pollock said. “Going to bed at 2 or 3 in the morning and waking up at 4:30 to catch a flight home. There was so much going on. It was pretty wild, but I had a great time.
“… I’m still walking on cloud nine. There is a lot of love from all of my friends, my teammates. People were coming up to me [Monday] in school and hugging me and saying how proud they were. My coaches were all talking about how they can’t wait to see me on Saturday nights.”
Pollock, who has family in nearby Wilkes-Barre, Pa., spoke with Flood about playing both weakside linebacker and strong safety.
His position is to be determined, but the chance to play on the Rutgers defense is enough for Pollock.
“Honored,” Pollock said. “Just honored to be a part of it.”
Pollock and Field both plan to be vocal leaders in the 2016 class.
Pollock has a friendship with four-star quarterback Dwayne Haskins dating back to seventh grade and spent time working on four-star offensive lineman Jordan Johnson during his Michigan visit. Pollock was quick to welcome Mohamed Jabbie to the 2016 class Monday night, and has a message for other Rutgers targets.
“It’s a brotherhood,” he said. “It’s a great family environment. We’re doing something special. We’re going to win. We’re going to win the Big Ten. We’re going to win the national championship. I’m talking to everyone.”