Lake Brantley linebacker Chris Delarosa could finally sit back and feel a bit of relief from the recruiting process Friday after committing to Georgia Southern.
It was difficult for Delarosa to narrow down his choices, but deciding where he wanted to go to school was not the hard part.
“I feel good and it’s a great relief to get that off my shoulders and have the recruiting process pretty much done with,” Delarosa said, “but it sucks calling the other schools to let them know I’ve committed somewhere else. It’s horrible having to tell the other coaches.”
Delarosa, a 6-foot-1, 220-pound middle linebacker, picked Georgia Southern over South Alabama, Western Michigan and Air Force.
“It pretty much came down to Georgia Southern and South Alabama,” said Delarosa, who is the No. 44-ranked player in the Sentinel’s 2014 Central Florida Super60. “I visited both and I felt more at home at Georgia Southern. It’s only four hours away and Georgia Southern has a winning history and they’ve been playing football for more than 50 years.
“At the end of the day when I talked to everybody about everything and looked at all the options, I just felt right about Georgia Southern.”
Delarosa was recruited by Eagles defensive backs coach Orlando Mitjans, who was excited to hear the news.
“They’re all on vacation right now and when I called him I said, ‘Hey coach I want to let you know I’m planning to come to Georgia Southern,’ and he started yelling and got all excited and he said, ‘You just made my vacation and you just made Georgia Sothern a whole lot better,’ ” Delarosa said. “Then I called Coach [Jeff] Monken, the head coach and he was excited, as well, and he wanted to make sure I was sure with my decision. I told him, ‘Yes sir, Georgia Southern and Statesboro is where I want to be.’ ”
His call to South Alabama assistant coach John Turner, the Orlando-area recruiter for the Jaguars, was the one he was dreading the most.
He supported my decision and just wanted to make sure it was the decision I wanted to make,” Delarosa said. “He said he’d still be watching me to see how it goes. South Alabama gave me my first offer and got everything rolling for me, and I’m very appreciative of all that they did for me. I just felt more at home at Georgia Southern.”
Delarosa led the Patriots in tackles last season with 98 and he also had three forced fumbles and 12 tackles for loss. He went into the spring practice session with no offers and came out with four FBS invites. Delarosa also has nine Football Championship Subdivision offers.
“The recruiting process was great and I had a lot of fun with it,” he said. “It’s always exciting any time a school wants to offer you a full scholarship and I loved all the coaches that were showing me love and at the end it was hectic, and it was painful to have to call all the coaches. It was like breaking up with 13 different people.”
Georgia Southern will be joining the Football Bowl Subdivision in 2014 and will play in the Sun Belt Conference. After a two-year probationary period, the Eagles can begin accepting bowl invitations after the 2015 season.
Chris Hays is the Sentinel's recruiting coverage coordinator and can be reached at email@example.com. Follow us on Twitter at @Os_Recruiting and Facebook at Orlando Sentinel Recruiting and now on Pinterest at Orlando Recruiting.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun