Kendrick Stewart has that rare combination of speed and strength that separates ordinary lineman from great linemen. At 6-foot-2 and 285 pounds, Stewart has a quick first step that takes opposing offensive linemen by surprise. Next thing you know Stewart is already in the backfield putting pressure on the opposing quarterback. Stewart's impressive strength (he benches in excess of 400 pounds) coupled with his athleticism and speed has made him one of the more coveted linemen in the state of Florida.
Stewart holds numerous offers from a number of schools including Auburn, Louisville, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, West Virginia, Purdue. Stewart does not yet have an offer from Rutgers although the RU staff has been very impressed with the young man's abilities.
"The recruiting process, it's good. I get a lot of phone calls and I wasn't really expecting that. I got used to it by now though," stated the soft spoken Stewart. In addition to those schools that have already offered Stewart states that he's receiving interest from Georgia, Tennessee, Michigan State and Rutgers.
Where does Rutgers fit in for the talented defensive lineman?
"I like the school. They have a good program that's just getting better. I was watching the Spring Game, I saw it a couple of times, and I liked what I saw. The thing is I don't know too much about the school. But I'd like to know more." Indeed, having a prospect of Stewart's caliber seemingly interested in and having a desire to know more about the budding Rutgers' program should make Scarlet Knight fans very happy.
Stewart is being recruited by Rutgers Defensive Backs Coach Chris Demarest, who has made very good impressions on a number of standout prospects the Scarlet Knights are pursuing. "He's crazy. He's just so funny. He's really enthusiastic and I really like him a lot." The word most often used by recruits to describe Coach Demarest is "real" - and Stewart was no exception: "Oh, he's definitely real."
Stewart has been ranked highly in numerous publications including No. 42 in Larry Bluestein's Pre-Season CLASS OF 2005 – TOP 200, No. 29 on Charles Fishbein's Pre-Season Top 100 – Class of 2005, and No. 28 on Mike Bakas' Pre-Summer Top 70.
Stewart seems in no hurry to speed up his recruiting process. There still seem to be several schools that he intends to find out more about, Rutgers being one of them. The race to land one of the more talented defensive lineman prospects should continue well into the late summer and fall months.
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