Sam Webb: What is it like being the son of a former pro? Obviously, when you have a dad who played professionally, a lot of times that heaps expectations upon you. Has that been pressure for you at all, or has it not been that?
Christian McCaffrey: “Well I think anytime you play football, there’s going to be pressure, but definitely having my last name brings a little bit more to the field, but I would definitely say it’s positive pressure. He’s taught me to use it as an advantage, and just to work harder, and rise to the expectations instead of being afraid to fail, and if I do fail, so what? People forget about it. It’s not that big of a deal, but he just taught me to get back on when things go wrong, because they don’t always go right, but I think it’s a positive pressure.”
Sam Webb: Ok, so, foot race. Dad, at say, your age, and you. Who wins that foot race?
Christian McCaffrey: “Me. (Laughter)”
Sam Webb: You said that like it wouldn’t even be close.
Christian McCaffrey: “Yeah, (laughter) that’s a non-hesitation answer. But once again, I’m telling you that on the phone. He’s not with me right now, so it might be a different answer if he’s in the room with me. “
Sam Webb: So has it always tailback for you, or did you at some point think you’d be a receiver like dad?
Christian McCaffrey: “I’ve been playing running back since I was six, so I definitely have a heart for that position, but in high school, I’ve been used as a receiver, depending on the team we’re playing, and the defense, so I’m definitely familiar with both, especially because of my background, but I definitely played running back my whole life, which has been something I definitely like, but receiver is definitely still in the mix.”
Sam Webb: Did you grow up a fan of any particular college?
Christian McCaffrey: “No, not really. I always just liked the Broncos,. I love rooting for them, and just love watching college football, whoever’s playing. I love the atmosphere and all that, but I love Stanford just because my dad and mom both went there, but now that recruiting is picking up, it’s really hard to say what college to root for, and who not to.”
Sam Webb: So I know Michigan has offered you, but can you name off the top of your head all the schools that have offered you scholarships?
Sam Webb: Do you get the sense that some others are close, and if so, which ones?
Christian McCaffrey: “I don’t know. I hope to maybe get a few more offers, but right now I think I’m just considering all the schools that are showing interest in me. So I don’t know, if someone ends up offering, great, but I don’t know. I know Notre Dame has been talking to me a whole lot, but we’ll see.”
Sam Webb: You have schools on your list that really vary as far as their schemes are concerned, so do you have a preference as far as spread versus pro-style?
Christian McCaffrey: “I don’t know. I think that wherever I go, it will be somewhere where I know I’ll be used as a football player, whether it’s running back or receiver in a pro-style offense or a spread offense. I’ve been playing a spread offense pretty much all my life, so I’m more familiar with a spread offense, but I’ve definitely still run a little bit of pro, so I don’t think one is over the other. I think I’ll take my visits and decide on which school I like best.”
Sam Webb: Let’s pretend for a second that you’re getting ready to pick that school. What are going to be the biggest factors in that choice?
Christian McCaffrey: “I think all the schools I mentioned definitely have great football programs, and have had some success… all the schools I’m interested in, but the main factor would have to be somewhere where I can enjoy college the other three seasons out of the year, and where I can get a good education. That’s always been big to me, where I can get a good degree, because you can’t play football forever, and somewhere where I feel comfortable, and where I’ll feel at peace, and trying to live out my dream of playing football.”
Sam Webb: What about timeline? Have you and your dad, or you and your family talked about a game plan for making a decision? Do you want to wait until signing day, or do you want to get it done before your season?
Christian McCaffrey: “I hope to commit maybe before my senior year next season, but that would be good so I could focus on my senior season, but you never know what can happen. I may not be ready to decide yet, or something might pop up, so right now that’s the plan. I’ll be taking my visits in the spring so it will give me a better glimpse on who to pick.”
Sam Webb: At this point, is there a school or schools that are kind of sticking out for you right now?
Christian McCaffrey: “I think every school is sticking out for me. I do have some schools in mind that I know I’m for sure going to visit and show a lot of interest in, but we’ll see.”
Sam Webb: Is Michigan one of the schools that you think you’re going to visit?
Christian McCaffrey: “Oh, definitely, yes.”
Sam Webb: Is distance from home going to be a factor for you?
Christian McCaffrey: “Probably not, no. Both of my parents lived on the east coast, and they ended up going to California, and they’re still close with their family, so I think it just goes to show it’s possible. My older brother plays football at Duke right now, and he’s pretty far away, but that’s what planes are for. I want to have the best college experience for me, and if that means traveling a little bit, that’s fine with me.”