Rumson (N.J.) Fairhaven 2018 tight end Elijah McAllister is big on loyalty and even bigger on family. A self-described “big family guy,” McAllister saw both during a Saturday unofficial visit to Rutgers during a recruiting event.
McAllister was one of may top underclassmen on the Rutgers campus, and he left with an extremely positive view of coach Chris Ash's staff.
“They want to lock down New Jersey and become a better program,” he said. “Before it wasn't that great. To be honest, Rutgers is my favorite staff. They're my favorite coaching staff, the offensive coordinator, the defensive line coach, the head coach, they're my favorite that's been recruiting me. … They're just great people. They get the job done. They've accomplished great things so far. Plus they're grinders. They get to work. They just set goals and the get the job done.”
McAllister visited for a recruiting barbecue event for his final planned trip before the start of the season.
“The visit went great. I got to see all the 2017 commits, and they're very active,” he said. “It's a lot like a family. I got to see how much of a family Rutgers is becoming. They keep growing – new weight room facilities and recruiting with commitments that they're getting. They're getting better every day.”
“I'm big on loyalty,” McAllister said. “I'm a big family guy, so seeing that if I went there, and all of the other commits would be close, that's big to me. They're trying to show us that Rutgers is here to stay and they're growing every day. They're showing us by example. We see all of the commitments that Rutgers is getting and they can get a lot more.”
From tight end to outside 3-4 linebacker, colleges are mixed on the position that best suits McAllister.
“[Rutgers] still not sure,” he said. “Really, they're the only school that still thinks I can play receiver in college. Maybe defense end. It doesn't matter to me. Offensively I like scoring touchdowns but defensively, I like being able to make my own play.”
McAllister is done with visits until the start of the college football season. His next stop is to Tennessee with expected trips to Virginia, Maryland, Penn State and Rutgers during the year.
“The biggest thing is a great school,” McAllister said. “I want to be able to go to a school that, if football doesn't work out or even if it does after my career, I want people to still look at me and say 'where did you get tour degree from?' I want to be proud to say I got a degree from that university.”