Calvert Hall quarterback Thomas Stuart, who solidified the Cardinal football program as a local and regional power in his two years at the Towson School, has announced that he will begin his college football career with Santa Rosa Junior College in California.
Stuart, who took his time with the recruiting process, selected the junior college route so that he could continue to play while progressing towards his goal of playing Division I-A football.
"I think it gives me the best opportunity to continue playing. I didn't want to be someone who went to college and sat on the bench for two or three years," said Stuart, who transferred to Calvert Hall from Good Counsel School, prior to his junior year. "I think junior college allows me to go play for two years and transfer to a bigger school where I will get to play two more years."
Stuart, who had 60 touchdown passes in his two seasons at Calvert Hall, including seven in one game, said he had extensive opportunities on the I-AA level, but felt JUCO was the best path to his ultimate goal.
"I had scholarship offers from a lot of Division I-AA schools, but I thought I had the ability to play Division I-A and a lot of coaches and other schools believe that too."
Stuart added that he has received support from throughout the MIAA in his quest to find a college home.
"I can't say enough about how the MIAA rallied around me. Coach (Biff) Poggi and Coach (Henry) Russell from Gilman made some calls for me. They sent my tape out for me and Coach (Brian) Abbott from Loyola and Coach (Brant) Hall, they did a lot for me too, and I can't say enough about the coaches who helped me along the way."
Santa Rosa is located 40 miles north of San Francisco and plays in the Nor Cal Football Conference. A family connection to head coach Keith Simons and the pass heavy offense employed by the Bear Cubs were two determining factors for Stuart.
"I'll be in Northern California. The weather is pretty much 70-degrees every single day throughout the year and a lot of Baltimore kids go to Santa Rosa," said Stuart. "Coach Simons is a great coach. He's had the best offense in JUCO for the last couple of years. They throw the ball 60 times per game, which I am pretty excited about. He's just a great guy. He went to school with my dad and I trust him and believe in him."
Click on the video link above to see VSN's interview with Stuart as he discusses his college choice.
Last Updated (Monday, 27 February 2012 12:03)