Another top RB has Stanford as a favorite

Stanford's 2010 running back class has the potential to be a special group. The Cardinal already have a commitment from top-40 back Anthony Wilkerson, and highly rated players such as Malcolm Jones, Deontae Cooper, Jordan James, Josh Quezada and Brandon Bourbon remain possibilities at the position.

But a closer look at the Cardinal's running back board reveals one other intriguing name. Niceville Senior HS (Niceville, Fla.) star Roy Finch received an offer from Stanford a few weeks after the conclusion of his junior football season, and has made a point of staying in regular contact with the Cardinal coaching staff ever since.

With 20 other schools jumping into the mix for Finch's services after Stanford offered, Finch's recruitment will be highly contested, to say the least. But at this point in time, Stanford looks to be in pretty good shape with Scout.com's No. 18 RB.

In an exclusive interview with TheBootleg.com earlier this week, Finch said his top schools were Georgia, Florida, Oklahoma, Michigan, North Carolina, and Stanford, in no particular order. He then went on to explain what he liked about some of those schools.

Georgia: "I like the way they run the pro-style offense and I like the way they're pretty close to Florida. My family lives down here, so they'd be able to get to see me play a lot."

Stanford: "The education is probably the best out of all the Division I schools that have offered me so far. They're building a program that's on the rise, and hopefully I can be a part of that."

Florida State: "I don't know that much about Florida State but I know they have a lot of tradition at their school, and Coach Bobby Bowden is a great coach and a great person. I've gotten to talk to him by phone and meet him in person a couple of times."

North Carolina: "Most of my family lives in North Carolina, so I'd be close to them. I don't know if UNC won the ACC last year, but I know they did pretty well in the ACC and they're building their program up."

While Finch is not ready to declare a leader out of that group of six favorites, some of his family members are.

"Most of my family, they tell me to go to Stanford because my family believes in high education and my mom really likes Stanford," Finch said. "She's not pressuring me to go there, but the people of her firm tell her that Stanford's by far the best place to go. My mom is an analyst and works in Washington D.C. The president of her company really considers Stanford the best by far."

Getting a good education seems to be a point of emphasis in Finch's family. When asked what he was looking for in a college, Roy echoed the thoughts of his relatives.

"First of all, education is at the top of the list because you're going to have to a great foundation education-wise after football to finish the rest of your life, because football's not going to last forever," Finch said. "Also, the people, the style of offense they run and how comfortable I feel around the coaching staff is important."

This summer will be a critical time in Finch's recruitment. The four-star running back hopes to make a college decision before the start of his senior year, and is starting to line up some unofficial visits.

"I'm real busy this summer," Finch said. "I've been talking to my coaches lately and just trying to fit those visits in my schedule this summer. I'm trying to see which schools I can really try to get out to. I'm looking forward to trying to get out to Stanford, Georgia, North Carolina, and Oklahoma at some point this summer."

On the field, Finch is one of the more versatile athletes you will see. In his junior year he scored 22 touchdowns while rushing for more than 1,200 yards, gaining 300 yards on kickoff and punt returns, and adding 300 more as a wide receiver.

"Most schools are recruiting me for running back, but they're also looking to put me in the slot receiver and do a lot of punt return and kick return stuff as well," Finch said.

Beyond his versatility, college coaches are most impressed with Finch's speed and passion for football.

"They like my vision, my speed, and my lateral quickness," Finch said. "Then, they just like the way I play the game. I play the game with passion and I play fast every play. I just love the game."

The 5-foot-7, 170 pound Finch said that he can run the forty yard dash in 4.42 seconds, bench press 305 pounds, and squat 475.

He also said he has a 3.3 GPA and is currently enrolled in an SAT/ACT preparation course, with plans to test later this summer. He is interested in majoring in journalism, and took an AP English course this year with that goal in mind.


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