"It's too early to tell. All the schools right now are pretty much the same. I'll see which one stands out at the end of the summertime." – Sean Parker
Before Sean Parker plays a down of college football, he'll have accomplished more on the gridiron than most football players dream about. Parker started as a sophomore in 2007 and was named All-League. In 2008, he helped his team achieve even more.
"Last season was a good season," he said. "I helped the team a lot--we won the Division 4A City Championship. My role this year is just to lead us back to the Championship."
Indeed, many top football players commit the summer before their senior year to better allow them to focus on their final year of high school football, on winning that one last championship. Parker isn't sure, but he may well find himself in the same boat.
"I'll probably decide after the summer," he said. "That's a long time away. For now, I'm just relaxing, just playing football."
And while Parker's right that summer remains in the distant horizon, the winter months are when some of football's most serious recruiting occurs. (And besides, what would college football fans have to fill their days from January to September if not for recruiting?) Parker went to Stanford's Junior Day on Feb. 27 and Feb. 28, and he tells TheBootleg.com he enjoyed his time in Palo Alto.
"I had a real good time," he said. "The coaches there are real nice and made sure everyone had a good time. Everyone was pleased at the end. Everyone just said good things about it."
When asked what he liked and disliked most about the Cardinal, Parker uttered a sentence that, whether spoken out of politeness or honesty, will surely bring a smile to some Stanford fans' faces.
"There was nothing bad about Stanford," he said.
"What stood out most to me about Stanford were its facilities," he added. "The training facilities and the weight room were very impressive."
Still, two notes of caution bear mentioning lest Stanford fans grow too optimistic.
First, while Parker liked his interaction with the coaches, he said he didn't get a chance to talk with them individually for any extended period of time.
"We didn't get a chance to talk to them personally, but they answered all-around questions from the parents and people that were there," he said.
Secondly, Parker refuses to name a leader. And so, with over 20 schools in the hunt, the odds of any one school finishing first seem a lot smaller than its odds of finishing anywhere else, at least until Parker says otherwise.
"It's too early to tell," he said. "All the schools right now are pretty much the same. I'll see which one stands out at the end of the summertime."
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Surprisingly, given his current offer list, Parker didn't blow up as a recruit until his junior year. Some part of him still can't believe all the attention that's come since.
"I really didn't get recruited freshman or sophomore year," Parker said. "I was more just playing for the love of the game, and imagining how it might be at the next level. I never thought recruiting would be anything like this for me."
Make no mistake, though: Parker's enjoying the process.
"I feel I'm handling it pretty well," he said of being recruited. "It's just that you have to focus on whatever comes first, that's what you put your effort into. And then the recruiting makes it better and more exciting, so you have a good time with it."
Certainly football is one of those goals that come first for Parker. Given Stanford's stringent admissions requirements, however, Cardinal fans will also be glad to know Parker says academics also occupy a lofty perch on his list of priorities.
"Academics, I feel that goes further than just playing football," Parker said of what he is looking for in an ideal college. "And then the interaction with the coaches: how well you interact with them and how you take the role of being responsible, being a leader on the football team."
Should he decide to apply to Stanford, Parker's aware of the task that lies before him. He's confident he can get in, but the fact that the admission requirements are the toughest in Division I-A appeals to his competitive side.
"I think to get admitted at Stanford is kind of difficult, but if I try, I could do it," he said. "They don't ask you to do too much; they just want to see that your education is on a college level. It kind of appeals to me, that it's a lot. If you really want a good education, you have to start to do all that."
Parker reports a core GPA of 3.8.
"I'm trying to work on getting a 4.0 right now," he said. "I'm just concentrating on my schoolwork right now. I haven't gotten test scores back though. I took my SAT in January. I felt confident, but I need to work on vocabulary more."
While Sean's hitting those flashcards, fans, stay tuned right here. We'll have all the latest on The Bootleg on Sean Parker and Stanford football's 2010 recruiting class.
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