Rodriguez makes name for himself at Dean

When injuries take a talented player down, sometimes it takes a while for him to get back into the recruiting spotlight. That's exactly what happened to Dean QB Anthony Rodriguez (6-1, 210), but he's fully healthy and this year he led Dean College to its first ever Northeast Football Conference championsip and he's just now starting to pop onto some four-year programs' radars.

"It's been really fun this year and it's great that we won the first championship in our school's history," Rodriguez told earlier this week. "We're elibigle for a bowl and it sounds like we might end up at the bowl game in Arizona, but we don't know yet."

Rodriguez has had quite a journey to end up as the quarterback of a championship squad.

His senior season at Estera High School in Fort Meyers, Florida saw him pass for over 2,000 yards, run for over 1,000 and account for 53 touchdowns. But family troubles caused him to drop out and he studied for and received his GED shortly thereafter.

"It was just a messed up time for me and my family," Rodriguez recalls. "I just felt like I had to take care of things so I dropped out and it's just a miracle that I got up here."

How he ended up at Dean was almost fate as head coach Todd Vasey, who recruits the area that Rodriguez is from, mentioned he wanted to see some of his tape.

"I really didn't think I would play anymore, but I wanted to so I sent it up to him and he liked it and said he wanted me to come up and play," Rodriguez said. "I'm real thankful he gave me this opportunity, but it wasn't always fun because I had some injury issues."

That's a bit of an understatment.

Rodriguez suffered from appendicitis his freshman season and he received a medical redshirt that year and then in 2006 he tore his meniscus so he had to rehab from that.

But this year, Rodriguez thrived at the helm of Dean's multi-dimensional attack, throwing for almost 1,000 yards and eight touchdowns while using his 4.55 speed and running skills to amass almost 400 yards and seven scores on the ground, while playing in only seven games because of a pulled hamstring.

"I had a good year, but I'm still sort of growing as a quarterback," Rodriguez said. "I've been working on getting my timing back and just letting the game come to me.

"It was tough with my hamstring the way it was, but it wasn't enough to keep me out because I'm a football player so you have to play through pain sometimes."

On the recruiting front, Rodriguez is just starting to hear from a four-year school and he hopes to get some tape out to other schools in the near future.

"Eastern Illinois is the only one right now, but I'm hoping more look at me soon," Rodriguez said. "I just want to play four-year ball and I think I would be a great asset to teams. I just need a chance to prove myself."

Rodriguez will finish up in December and will have three years to play two wherever he ends up.

Anthony Rodriguez Scout Profile

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