Petty makes his choice

As one of the top JUCO defensive backs in the country, it has been baffling to see that American River S Zane Petty (6-1, 190) had gone without an offer from an FBS program. However, that changed recently after a Big 10 school was the first to extend a full-ride to the talented safety and he told that he had decided to join that team in 2013...

"I got offered by Illinois recently and I just committed to them yesterday," Petty told "It was just the right fit. From the school, the academics, the program and where it's headed, to the coaches, to the players, I just knew it was the best I was going to find so I just decided to end the process and commit to them."

Petty has tentative plans to visit Illinois on December 7th, but those plans could change depending on what happens on November 24th.

"We're playing City (College of San Francisco) on the 24th for the Nor Cal championship and if we win, we'll play either Ventura or Mt. San Antonio on December 7th, so if we are playing that weekend, I will have to reschedule it," Petty noted.

As a freshman, Petty totaled 50 tackles and four interceptions from his free safety spot and this season, he leads the team with 86 tackles and six interceptions.

"I feel like I'm both a run stopper or a ballhawk, but I love to be a playmaker who get the ball back for my team," Petty said. "Illinois likes me at free safety, so I think it will be a natural move for me over there."

Petty prepped at Corning (Ca.) High School and walked on at Colorado State in 2010 where he redshirted, but after the staff was let go, he decided to head to American River to give himself the chance of earning a scholarship.

He will have two years to play two following the completion of the 2012 season.

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