No pressure for Pressler: Coal Ridge junior QB wins leadership award, grant from NSCA Recruiting
Post Independent Sports Editor
PEACH VALLEY — Brooks Pressler knew about all of the awards available at the National Underclassmen Football Combine at Prarie View High School near Denver from June 1 to 2. Suffice to say, he had a pretty good idea of what to shoot for.
“They gave out awards for overall MVP, strongest man, leadership and other things,” the 5-10, 165-pound junior to be at Coal Ridge High School said. “I wasn’t too sure I was going to be the strongest man, and wasn’t sure about being the best overall athlete. So my thought was to go in there, be a leader and be the most talkative, and hopefully I’ll get [the leadership award].”
Pressler must have said and done all of the right things that weekend. He came away with the combine’s leadership award and, with it, a free recruiting service to help him be seen by college football scouts.
“I would just demonstrate a lot,” Pressler said. “I’d always be one of the first people up to demonstrate a drill or one of the most talkative guys out there. Basically, it was about taking charge.”
Players from all over Colorado were there, coming from schools similar in size to Coal Ridge as well as upper-tier 5A schools like Valor Christian, Boulder and Prairie View. The camp, which holds weekend sessions at high schools and stadiums around the nation, runs very similar to how drills at the NFL Rookie Combine in Indianapolis are run. Athletes run a 40-yard dash, shuttle run, broad jump, vertical jump and bench press.
Pressler, who will compete for the starting quarterback job at Coal Ridge in the fall, impressed the instructors at the combine for different reasons, however. When the combine staff was unloading equipment on the camp’s first day, Pressler was one of the first athletes who volunteered to help unload.
Some of the combine drills included 7-on-7 drills along with 1-on-1 drills, where a defensive back would match up with a wide receiver doing passing routes. When Pressler was the quarterback, he’d be the first person to either congratulate a receiver for making a great catch, or the first one to say “my bad” for making a bad throw.
For winning the combine’s leadership award, Pressler was given access for a year to NSCA Recruiting service, which typically has an annual cost of close to $3,000. With this, the soon-to-be junior will receive consultation from a collegiate scout within the service, edited and highlighted game video to send to potential colleges and guidance from the scout on how to maximize his college recruiting potential.
All colleges, weather it be NAIA or NCAA Division I or II or III, they all subscribe to their service,” Coal Ridge coach Kyle Sager said. “What Brooks can do is he can load up all of his stats, his academics, his physical stats. Basically, they set up a Web page for him that he can put his highlight films on, and coaches can just view his Web page.
It keeps track of what coaches from what schools are viewing him, and he can send e-mails to each of these coaches,” Sager continued. “For Brooks, all of his stats and accomplishments will be loaded onto this Web site. It’s basically one-stop shopping for Brooks Pressler for all the coaches on this site.”
Sager, who played college football at the University of San Diego, emphasized the advantage Pressler has in a very saturated pool of potential college football players.
“Not every person is a fit for every school,” Sager said. “This helps him keep his options open and helps him make sure he makes the right choice for him.”
Pressler, however, isn’t focused right now on who he wants to play college football for.
“My focus right now is putting Coal Ridge back on the map,” he said. “Our dedication has gone downhill pretty bad. Rifle and Glenwood [Springs] are no more talented than we are, but they’re a lot more dedicated I think. I think we have the talent to really do something, and I feel like I need to be the one who really puts my foot down and get in there.”
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Fans, players and coaches on both sides of Stubler Memorial Field seemed to know it would come down just the way it did, regardless of who had the ball at the end.