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Recruiting Notes: Dexter's Hendren a big commodity

11/7/2012

Dexter School junior James Hendren is too big to overlook. Especially if you happen to be a college football coach.

Recruiting NotebookAt 6-foot-7 and 310 pounds, Hendren has what some consider to be ideal size for an offensive tackle at the college level. That explains why so many big-name college programs have Hendren on their radar.

“He's got interest from all over the country –- significant interest,” Dexter School coach Casey Day said. “Virginia, BC, Northwestern, Notre Dame, Stanford, Duke, Vanderbilt, and to a lesser degree, Florida, UCLA and Nebraska.

“He's a solid, dominant run-blocker and an exceptional pass blocker. He's a top kid academically as well. He's in the top two or three in his class.”

Outside of the Ivy League, Hendren has yet to receive a Division 1 offer. He said although academics are his No. 1 priority, he's looking to play college football at a higher level than the Ivy League. Most schools are projecting him as a right tackle.

“The Ivy League is not what I'm hoping for,” Hendren said. “Just like every other [FBS] recruit, I do have a dream of playing in the NFL someday. Not saying it's likely, but it's a goal.”

Hendren, who will also play basketball for Dexter this season, attended camps at Virginia, Penn State and Boston College last summer. He said he plans to attend the Boston College-Notre Dame game on Saturday, and also plans to visit Northwestern later this month.

“I'd be shocked if he didn't have any offers going into next spring,” Day said. “There's gonna big some big-time programs chasing him.”

BC is high on Hendren's list, in part because it's close to home. BC coach Frank Spaziani was the first college coach to notice Hendren, but it wasn't on the football field –- it was on the basketball court.

“In my freshman year he saw me play in an AAU tournament where his son was playing on the court next to me,” Hendren said. “He came over to me and told me to send him my film. I play basketball a little like I play football. I think he liked that.

“BC is close to my heart. I do know that they're not having a great season and they've had a change in administration in the AD position, but I respect all the people there.”

Hendren said he wouldn't cross BC off his list even if the school made a coaching change after this season.

“For most people I think the institution would be enough no matter who is coaching you,” he said. “It would be a great place to be, but I'm not gonna limit myself to that.”

Delayed trip: Everett High School's John Montelus, a four-star offensive lineman, said he will take his official visit to Notre Dame on Nov. 16. Notre Dame is scheduled to play Wake Forest the following day.

Montelus, New England's top prospect from the Class of 2013, committed to Notre Dame in April. He originally planned to take his official visit on Oct 20, but postponed the trip after Everett's game against BC High that weekend was moved from Friday night to Saturday because of heavy rain.

Montelus is the only New England player ranked in the ESPN 300 (No. 292).

Super sophomore: Christian Wilkins, a 6-foot-4, 292-pound tight end/defensive end from Suffield (Conn.) Academy, is a player to keep an eye on from the Class of 2015. One media outlet has Wilkins ranked among the top 100 sophomores in the country.

Suffield is 7-0 entering Saturday's game against Westminster. Wilkins is second on the team in tackles (38), solo tackles (26), sacks (3.5) and first in forced fumbles (three). Offensively, he's second in receptions (11), receiving yardage (167) and touchdown catches (two).

Recruiting information regarding high school or prep school players in New England can be sent to Roger Brown at rbrown@nhfootballreport.com.