By the time the National Letters of Intent came through Wednesday morning, Rutgers and coach Kyle Flood already shifted their focus to the class of 2016.
Flood and staff, along with media responsibilities throughout the day, contacted 2016 prospects to build an even stronger foundation.
One of those in contact was Orlando (Fla.) Dr. Phillips linebacker Jonathan Pollock, who joined the 2016 Rutgers recruiting class during an in-season visit last fall.
Pollock hopes to see other prospects do the same when it comes to early decisions.
“[It was] the biggest weight off of my shoulders,” said Pollock, who verbally committed hours before the history 26-24 victory over Michigan. “I wasn’t stressed for recruiting or thinking about how many tackles I needed to have in games. Just play.”
Pollock said the pressure was off during a 12-1 junior season at Dr. Phillips (the site of Rutgers 2012 Russell Athletic Bowl practices). He recently recorded 11 tackles in a USA Football all-star game as a team captain.
“It was amazing,” said future teammate Mohamed Jabbie, who played alongside Pollock in the game. “It was such a true honor. [We] had a lot of fun.”
Jabbie was the third commitment in the 2016 class, and plans to be vocal as he heads into National Signing Day 2016 with other prospects.
“I don’t feel like it’s a responsibility because I kind of put it on myself to make this class a special one,” said the Monmouth Junction (N.J.) South Brunswick receiver.
Glen Mills (Pa.) Garnet Valley offensive lineman Ted Field committed first – the earliest commitment in school history – and reacted excitedly when two others joined the class.
“It’s so great,” Field said on the clock turning to 2016. “I can’t wait to build a dynasty.”
Field and Pollock are both set for early enrollments at Rutgers, while Jabbie plans to sign on National Signing Day 2016.
All three credited relationships with Flood for their early commitments.
“You’re a person in his eyes, not a number,” Pollock said. “He’s more of a mentor than just a coach for Rutgers and his door is always open to anyone – something less than 1 percent of college coaches are.”