Blue Devils gaining exposure

Published 10:02 am Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Recruitment of Escambia County Blue Devils football players continues to pick up as upcoming seniors as well as outgoing seniors are getting looks from college programs.

Blue Devils defensive linemen Tyler Nero and Dalvin Craft have opened the door for Escambia County football with Nero receiving attention from BCS conferencces and Craft getting attention from schools from Conference USA and smaller divisions.

Blue Devils head coach Mark Heaton said the underclassmen have been easy to get out because they have had the chance to get a head start on their recruitment.

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“These guys that are juniors that are upcoming seniors, we have had kind of a head start,” he said. “We got film out on them early, we got transcripts out on them early and made contacts quickly, so the underclassmen are easy to deal with if you get them out there early on.”

For the outgoing senior Blue Devils, playing at the next level is a possibility, but getting the word out about there talents is more difficult.

Heaton said he and his coaches are doing there best to get film out on their seniors.

“As far as our seniors go, we are trying to do everything we can to get interest out there on them,” he said. “We have helped T.C. (Brown) get a lot of interest from Birmingham Southern and Huntingdon College who both want him to come play for their programs. You are talking about $30,000-plus tuition, so we are trying to find somewhere in state that’s affordable and that we can get him some help with. He’s going to go visit Miles College this weekend. Hopefully, he will be a good fit for them. We are just hoping and praying that something will come through.”

Along with Brown, other seniors including Montez Curry, Marshall Rolin and Chris Smith are getting help from their coaches, so they can play at the college level.

Heaton said they are just trying to find a school for them to attend.

“We also have guys like Montez Curry, Marshall Rolin, Nick Flowers and Chris Smith who are interested in playing at the next level,” he said. “We are just trying to find somewhere for them to go. A lot of times there might not be any money in it for them, but we want to get them in school and get them some kind of financial aid, scholarship or grant. We want to give them the opportunity to play football, if they want to. A lot of them are interested in Concordia and some are looking at West Alabama.”

The exposure of Nero and Dalvin will only help the younger players for the Blue Devils.

Heaton said by two of his players receiving attention, college recruiters will find interest in other players.

“As far as Tyler and Dalvin go, the recruitment process they are going through will help other guys on this team,” he said. “They are bringing coaches to the campus this spring and fall and it will only help expose more of our team and allow them to show what they can do.”