Five Lead for Maryland MLB Troy Gloster

They say there are haves and have-nots in life, but rarely is it so clear-cut as with Maryland MLB Troy Gloster. Gloster has ten offers. Five of the schools lead. Five do not. Who are his leaders and where does Stanford stand? There's one way to find out…

Class of 2010 MLB Troy Gloster has yet to be rated by Scout.com or a competing recruiting network, but colleges haven't been so shy in evaluating the 6-foot, 215-pound prospect. Gloster's offer list has now reached double digits, as he told TheBootleg.com in an exclusive interview Saturday.

"Right now, I have 10 offers: Boston College, Stanford, North Carolina, West Virginia, North Carolina State, Michigan, Michigan State, Iowa, Wisconsin and Towson. Connecticut, Syracuse and Pitt are showing a lot of interest, and I have also been in contact with Ohio State lately."

Not all those schools stand on equal ground, however. As promised, Gloster sports five favorites.

"Right now, the schools I'm really interested in would be West Virginia, UNC, Michigan, Stanford and Boston College," he said. "That's my top-five."

Gloster identified what stands out about each of those five schools:
-- "Boston College was my first offer. Being first, I have a lot of respect for them. They took a chance on me. That's definitely the biggest thing."
-- "Stanford is a great school with a great recruiting class this past year. I'm high on Stanford."
-- "Michigan has a great tradition. They've got the Big House. They produce a lot of great athletes. I called that my biggest offer, just knowing the tradition of Michigan and all the players that came through. Just the tradition."
-- "UNC was my dream school when I was young, for basketball especially, but they were my favorite school growing up."
-- "West Virginia: when I took a visit there about a month ago, they showed me a lot of love and really wanted me there."

Fans of two of the above schools have additional reason to be excited, for what Gloster sees in their programs is exactly what he's looking for in his ideal college destination.

"I want a school that has a lot of tradition and a place I'll be competitive at if I end up playing football there," he said. "I just want to play early wherever I go. And I want a great academic school. I'm a pretty good student -- my family always taught me education was one of the greatest things in life."

While Gloster hasn't yet visited the strongest academic school on his list, Stanford, Cardinal fans should not read into that too deeply.

"My friends think the best time to go would probably be on an official visit," Gloster said. "I'm planning on it. With the cost, it's pretty much all the way across the country, so why not take an official visit?"

Another positive for the Cardinal: Gloster is confident he could fight for early playing time on the Farm.

"I would think so," he said of playing early at Stanford. "My friends and I are frequent visitors to Rivals and Scout, looking at recruiting websites, looking at who went where."
[At long last, an athlete who actually admits to following his sport in the media.]

As a football player, Gloster can be described in two ways. First is by the numbers, where he claims a 4.6 40-yard dash, a 315-pound max bench, a 470-pound max squat and shuttle runs as fast as 4.2. He says he anticipates improving many of those stats the next time he's measured, as he hasn't been tested since last summer.

Then, of course, there are Gloster's own words, describing where he's strongest and where he's looking to improve most before next season.

"A lot of coaches describe me as having a motor," Gloster said. "I'm a hard worker: I read a play and flow right to it. As far as work, right now I'm definitely in the weight room three times per week, and I'm working on my feet and agility. Nowadays, speed kills. That's the biggest thing."

Two football players figure to have Gloster's ear as he narrows in on a final decision, which he hopes to do early his senior year. First is Troy's brother Drew Gloster, a redshirt junior tight end/linebacker for Maryland.

"He likes it and he has a good time there," Troy said of his older brother, who'll return to the gridiron in September after being academically ineligible in 2008. "He actually started at linebacker in spring ball. So he likes it, but he understands it's my decision and is not going to force me to Maryland."

Another potential influence is Gloster's high school teammate, cornerback Louis Young, a former 2010 Stanford verbal who's reopened his recruitment. Sure enough, Young has filled his fellow Our Lady Good Counsel HS (Olney, MD) defender in on the Cardinal.

"We both know it's a great school and graduating with a Stanford degree, that's huge," Gloster said. "We both looked at it: they signed a good class this past year and are on the rise. He's definitely interested; the reason he decommitted is he just didn't want to rush."

While Stanford does appear on the right trajectory, they last had a winning season in 2001. Similarly, the only other top-five school Gloster inferred possessed an ideal attribute (tradition, compared to Stanford's academics) is Michigan, and the nation's all-time winningest program suffered through a 3-9 2008 campaign. Gloster, however, says he won't hold the recent results against those respective schools, and would still be able to give either program an honest look if one of them has a 2009 to forget.

"I know how great Michigan's new coach is," Gloster said of Rich Rodriguez. "He's got to get the right personnel, so I understand that they're both rebounding. I'm looking at being a part of that rebound at both of those schools. So I'm looking at the freshmen and the younger guys, and I'm definitely aware of what's going on at those schools."

Also on the rebound is Gloster's GPA, from around a 3.4 freshman year to a 3.8 on his last report card, he says. He recently took the SAT, and thinks he'll hear back on his scores in a matter of days.

"Like I said, my family does believe academics do come first," he said.


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