In the world of recruiting, anyone and everyone is fair game when it comes to getting an athlete to sign. That’s exactly what happened to Dreher’s Tevin Mack, who spurned intense pressure to stay home and instead chose Virginia Commonwealth.
When you’re a top 100 player, everybody wants a piece of you, especially college coaches. Their livelihoods depend on getting commitments from teenagers, and they’re masters of persuasion.
“At first, before I signed, everybody wanted me to go here and there and different places, so I wanted input from everybody,” Mack says. “But I had to take the time to settle down and just figure out what I wanted to do in my heart. So I figured that out.”
Mack says a big factor in his decision was how much love he received from VCU fans online.
““It’s crazy. They were crazy before I even signed,” Mack says. “A year ago they were crazy on me, always mentioning me in tweets, editing crazy pictures of me in a uniform already, it was just crazy. They have a great fan base and it’s a really great place to play.”
Mack said the local response to his decision not to attend USC has been mostly positive.
“Everybody’s just pretty much proud of me,” Mack says. “There’s not really any negative hatred or anything like that. Everyone’s proud of me. Referees, teachers, everybody tells me they’re just proud of me and what I’m doing for Columbia. So it’s a pretty good feeling.”
For Dreher coach Jeff Dibatisto, the process was almost equally agonizing.
“It was a crazy three months leading up to him signing,” DiBattisto says. “His coaches that recruited him did a fantastic job, but there was a lot of pressure on him, I think a lot of pressure on his family, too, to commit to one of those programs. And in the end he did what was best for him, what he thought was best for him, and that was signing with VCU.”
Mack said he’s glad his recruitment is over and is focusing all his attention now on getting the Blue Devils to the state championship game, one the team missed last year when it fell in the semifinals at home by a point to Greenville.