New Position, Big Results

Penn Hills (PA) standout Cullen Christian isn't concerned with the pressures that come with being labeled as the number three cornerback in the class of 2010. In fact, the senior isn't even lining up at that spot for the Indians this season, switching to safety in effort to keep him more of a factor in his team's secondary.

While opposing offenses were able to throw to the other side of the field last year against the 6-1 lockdown corner, Christian found himself the freedom to roam around the middle of the field in his Penn Hills season opener against the Gateway Gators last Friday.

Despite a 19-7 loss for the Indians, Christian was an instant impact, recording double-digit tackles, intercepting a pass and reportedly making a highlight reel catch at wide receiver towards the end of the game. Still, despite yet another standout individual performance, the only concern right now for the upperclassman is the number of tallies he can help his team put in the win column this season.

"For my first game at safety I thought it went well; I made some plays defensively," Christian says. "We lost the game, but we're going to turn things around. I think it's looking good."

Given this winning mindset, good size for his position and still growing potential given his lack of experience, it's no wonder the Pennsylvania native has attracted the interest of some 20 schools already. Christian lists Rutgers, Michigan, UCLA, Syracuse, West Virginia, Minnesota, Colorado, Maryland, Illinois and Pittsburgh as some of the programs that have offered scholarships.

According to the senior, Michigan, West Virginia and UCLA are his top three choices right now, but he isn't planning on making a final decision until at least October, though that announcement date could change he said.

Despite receiving an offer from the Scarlett Knights, Christian says he has had no contact with the program up to this point.

"I've never talked to anyone from Rutgers. I got a letter in the mail with the offer from them and that's it."

The Wolverines have been recruiting him the hardest to date thus far according to Christian, but several other schools on his list seem to fit his outline of what the perfect school would offer him – listing team tradition and academics as two of the most important factors.

For now though, the corner is focused on preparing for his next game – a September 18th matchup with non-conference opponent Butler – while also improving the finer points of his game. While he shows good instincts and an overall comfortable feel for the position, Christian has stated that he is working on taking his speed to another level while also progressing in his abilities as a tackler.

"Another thing I was lacking last season was experience; I only started one year, so now as I get experience everything is starting to improve for me because I know what's going on," he says.

A fact that only spells a bright future for both Christian and the secondary that signs him in the upcoming months.

Christian reports a 2.7 GPA with scores of 1440 on the three-part SAT and 1020 on the two-part SAT.


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