Chris Bonds Will Be One of Nation's Best

One prospect that you can bet will be making headlines and shattering records for the next three years is Richland Northeast (Columbia, SC) sophomore defensive end, Chris Bonds. It is rare for a high school sophomore to warrant much publicity on the football recruiting front, but in this case, Bonds is simply that good.

The 6'4, 240 pound Bonds has had the opportunity to play with high profile players such as Adam Patterson, Rodney Paulk, Mark Barnes, and Gary Gray at Richland Northeast, but after only his freshman season, some analysts believe he may be the best of the bunch. Playing as a raw freshman defensive end last season, Bonds accumulated 55 tackles, 10 sacks, and 7 fumble recoveries on his way to being named honorable mention All-State. His success as a freshman was nearly unprecedented, but that has not deterred Bonds from working diligently this off-season in preparation for his sophomore campaign.

"Right now, I'm trying to develop more. I'm trying to get to Adam Patterson status by my junior year. Over the summer we've been working hard, lifting weights, and running, but I'm just trying to develop and become a better player. That way I'll have my future set in college and hopefully make it past college."

RNE Head Coach Jay Frye was kind enough to share his thoughts on his promising, young defensive lineman.

"Chris Bonds, of course, is the first freshman we've ever had start on the defensive line. He started last year opposite Adam Patterson at defensive end and just did a super job for us. I believe he led the team in recovered fumbles. He had 7 fumbled recoveries on the year, and he just made big plays all year. He's probably lost about five or 10 pounds from last year. He's really gotten a little bit leaner and a little bit quicker. He's really perfected his technique, and he should be a force at the defensive end position."

Bonds, who runs a respectable 4.8 second forty yard dash, will be asked to play both ways for the Cavaliers this year.

"Right now I'm playing defensive end, and on our goal line (offense) I'm playing tight end."

However, when it comes to which side of the ball he would prefer to play on in college, Bonds leaves no doubt.

"Anything defensively, because offensively I don't really like all the publicity. I just like running around and busting heads, finding the ball."

The talented underclassman is sure to draw recruiting interest on the national scale in the coming years, and he still has a lot of high school football left to play, but Bonds currently has a general idea of where he would be interested in playing his college ball.

"I want to stay in the SEC, because you know, it's a powerhouse conference, but outside of the SEC, I wouldn't mind Southern Cal and Michigan."

When asked if there was an early favorite for his services, Bonds gave a response that is sure to please the hometown faithful.

"Right now, it'd have to be in-state USC."

One reason the Gamecocks are the early front-runners for Bonds services is because he camped at USC this summer and enjoyed his time there. The South Carolina coaching staff made a positive impression on the young star, and Bonds took the time to describe what he liked about the camp experience.

"It was my first full football camp that I had gone to, ever. Before I had just been going to high school (camps). It was very fun, and I learned a lot. Most of the coaching staff down there is excellent, and I like them. I hope to go to some more (camps) out of state maybe, but it was a great experience."

Bonds, who is an honor roll student at RNE, has set a couple of goals for himself and his team this coming season.

"Personal goals for me would have to be being a better player for myself and my team, because right now we've got to pull together so we can get back to where we were. (2005 State Championship game) We lost a couple of starters, but right now we've got talent to fill those spots, and it's going to be good this year."

Stay tuned to for more news on this blossoming, in-state star.

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