Commentary

Jessamen Dunker enjoys the ride

Not long ago, he was all about hoops. Now the Florida commit is a UA All-American

Originally Published: November 10, 2011
By Corey Long | ESPN Recruiting Nation

Boynton Beach (Fla.) offensive lineman Jessamen Dunker admits that football just wasn't his game.

Before the 6-foot-6, 315-pounder took to mauling defensive linemen on the gridiron, he was all about basketball.

"I was mostly a basketball guy and I really just started playing football last season because my coach asked," Dunker said. "I wasn't really thinking about all of this."

Dunker, a Florida commit, never thought about being an ESPNU 150 prospect who major programs would fight over.

"I thought I would be going to some lower division school at best," Dunker said. "Maybe an FCS program if I was lucky. I never expected to be a major prospect, the thought never crossed my mind. But I started getting all kinds of offers when my highlight tape went out in February.

But in just his second year of playing organized football, it all happened for Dunker. Now to top things off he received his Under Armour All-American jersey Thursday. It was part of the 80-stop American Family Insurance presents the Under Armour All-America Game selection tour.

Even thought it's still a little new to Dunker, he hasn't been shy about his feelings towards these accomplishments.

"It's exciting and being in the Under Armour Game is a real honor," Dunker said. "In all honesty I didn't watch last year's game because I really wasn't watching or following football much at that time but I've been hearing about the game from guys who played in it before and it's a top-notch event."

The 2012 Under Armour All-American game is loaded with top defensive linemen including Mario Edwards, Eddie Goldman, Chris Casher and Dante Fowler. Dunker sees it as an opportunity to improve his own game and get a better idea of next-level competition.

"I'm always looking to learn new techniques and new tricks because I'm still pretty fresh to the game," Dunker said. "There will be a lot of good linemen there so I know I'm going to have to be ready to step up to them."

Dunker committed to the Gators in the spring and is preparing to enroll at the school in January.

"I am 100 percent behind Florida, I went to the Alabama game and had a great time," Dunker said. "I'm probably going to take my official in December and see what's in store for me come January."

He expects to do a little recruiting and catch up with old friends during the Under Armour practice week at Disney World.

"I've kept in touch with Latroy [Pittman] and Sean [Price] so I'll be looking forward to seeing them again," Dunker said. "I meant them both at a Miami Nike camp earlier and Sean was my roommate at The Opening in Oregon.

"And I'll definitely be talking to a few people about Florida. I'm not sure who but by then I'll know and I'll put a little bug in their ear."

Corey Long has been covering high school football and recruiting in the Sunshine State since 1995. He can be reached at coreyespn@gmail.com.

Corey Long

Reporter, RecruitingNation