Caldwell County junior quarterback Elijah Sindelar, who made The Courier-Journal’s All-State first team and has been considered a top recruiting target of the University of Kentucky, verbally committed to Purdue on Tuesday.
Caldwell County coach David Barnes said Sindelar, who is a 4.0 student, chose Purdue in large part due to that school’s engineering program.
Sindelar received a scholarship offer from the Boilermakers last month after visiting UK and Purdue on consecutive days.
“That was the best fit for him educationally,” Barnes said.
Barnes said Sindelar made up his mind last week and informed UK offensive coordinator Neal Brown, who had been his primary recruiter for the Wildcats.
“He just felt like he already knew what he wanted to do and to be fair to UK and Mississippi and the other schools that had offered him, to go ahead and make his decision, so that they could move in whatever direction they could move in,” the coach said.
Barnes said Brown had done a “tremendous job recruiting Elijah” and developed a good relationship with Sindelar, “so it was a hard thing for Elijah to call Coach Brown and tell him he was going to Purdue.”
The 6-foot-5, 205-pound Sindelar also had offers from Ole Miss, Western Kentucky, Murray State and Bowling Green. Illinois has also been interested.
Sindelar completed 196 of 303 passes (64.7 percent) for 3,374 yards and 44 touchdowns with only eight interceptions for the Tigers (12-1). He also ran for 424 yards and seven touchdowns.
National signing day for juniors is February 2015. Barnes said “a lot of things can happen between now and next year” but that he thinks Sindelar is firm on his pledge to the Boilermakers.
Sindelar is also a standout baseball player, and Barnes said he would like to pitch and play football in college. How well Sindelar’s 2014 baseball season goes could affect his thoughts about his future with that sport, but Barnes said Sindelar plans to play football regardless.