Newtown (Pa.) Council Rock North Pat Bartlett visited Rutgers Thursday, and when the coaching staff is in next month to see the 6-foot-6, 285-pound offensive lineman on his home turf, it could end in a scholarship offer.
Bartlett was close to the previous Rutgers staff, and was quick to lock in a visit with head coach Chris Ash’s group as soon as possible.
“The offer is coming soon is what [offensive line coach AJ] Blazek said,” Bartlett said. “He just wanted to see me in person. My feet got a lot better because I dropped a lot of weight. What he’s going to do is he’s going to come and watch me lift and after that, he’s probably going to offer me then. They want to see how my footwork has gotten a lot better.
“ … [The weight loss] helps me being able to get to the next level a lot easier, definitely with my balance. My center of gravity has gotten a lot better. I’m not falling off guys as much.”
Bartlett met with the Rutgers staff Thursday and will be back in March.
“Coach Blazek is an awesome guy,” he said. “He’s a real straight-up guy and coach Ash is doing something really special at Rutgers. I believe he’s going to turn them around in the next couple of years.”
Blazek and Bartlett spoke in detail about the changes coming to the Rutgers offense and where he fits.
“Coach Blazek said it fits me perfectly,” he said. “He said I’m the type of guy he saw from film that likes getting after it. I definitely agree with him. If I end up do going there, that offense would fit me perfectly. I see what [offensive coordinator Drew] Mehringer was running at Houston and I definitely took that into consideration.”
Bartlett has a flurry of visits to go with Syracuse this weekend as his next stop. He plans to visit Illinois, where he holds an offer, as soon as possible in addition to Northwestern, Boston College, Purdue, Pittsburgh, Maryland, Virginia Tech and South Carolina.
When Bartlett visits South Carolina, he has a friendly face on campus in former Council Rock North quarterback Brandon McIlwain.
“He was an awesome mentor,” Bartlett said. “He helped me through the recruiting process really well. He told me what to do and not to do. He gave me some numbers to reach out to some coaches and that ended up helping me. Some of the schools I’m talking to, Brandon gave me their number. I was really fortunate to have him as a teammate.”
Deciding factors for Bartlett include proximity to family and education, where both criminal justice and political science interest him as majors.
“I want to go to a school where I’m going to get a good education,” he said. “That’s something me and my parents are going to take into consideration. I want to go somewhere and play good football, but at the same time, I want to know I’m getting a good education. I want to know that I’m playing for a great football program. I want to know that I can play for a coaching staff that I can trust.”