The Virginia program received its 14th commitment of 2002-2003 recruiting season yesterday, when Ragsdale (NC) WR/DB Emmanuel Byers verballed to coach Groh and company. The commitment followed the 48-13 Virginia victory over Maryland.
”Yes, I committed to Virginia yesterday,” said Byers, who is being recruited to play wide receiver for the Cavaliers. “[I committed there] because it was the place where I wanted to be.”
While the Cavaliers have had a terrific 8-4 season and seem to be rising fast in the college ranks, Byers committed to the program for more reasons than just football.
“It’s just the school by itself,” said Byers. “Even if Coach Groh retired next week, I would still go to Virginia. It’s not just the coaches, but it’s the campus, and even if football doesn’t work out in the future, I still have something to fall back on.
“It was because of the coaches, but it wasn’t.”
Byers hopes to become a physical education teacher or maybe work in broadcast journalism in the future. On the field, Byers excelled at Ragsdale as a wide receiver and defensive back. He also returned punts and kicks and even served as the backup quarterback late in his senior season.
Ragsdale lost in the playoffs last week, and with his high school career over, Byers now looks forward to his college career.
“My high school career ended last Friday,” said Byers, who earned a spot in the NC-SC Shrine Bowl. “And this is where my college career will begin.”
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