College coaches had taken notice of Wyoming Valley West (Plymouth, PA) star Eugene Lewis in the months immediately following an outstanding sophomore season performance in 2009. He started at quarterback last season as a junior and continued to show off tremendous playmaking ability. Last December and January, Connecticut, Pittsburgh and Rutgers came through with offers. Then Penn State. Virginia Tech and others followed suit in the spring of 2011, and the Hokies are very much in the hunt for one of the top wide receiver prospects in the country.
Lewis visited Virginia Tech in April, taking in a spring practice.
“I was with him [on the visit],” Wyoming Valley West head coach Pat Keating said. “He took a trip down the coast and visited a bunch of schools in April. One of the spots was Blacksburg. He was impressed with Virginia Tech. They have beautiful facilities. What really jumped out to him down there was he loved the intensity of the practice. He loved the upbeat, physical nature of the practice. He liked the coaches. I think it’s safe to say Virginia Tech is high on his list.”
Virginia Tech has in fact made Lewis’ list of five finalists. Maryland, Oregon, Penn State and Pitt are in there as well, but there is no timetable for a decision. Next week, Lewis is flying out to Oregon next week for a combine, at which point he plans to visit the University of Oregon as well.
The major college interest is not a surprise to Keating, who knew about Lewis before he arrived at Wyoming Valley West.
“He came here as a good dual-sport kid. A football player and a basketball player,” Keating recalled. “He was mostly a quarterback growing up, but we made the move to put him at wide receiver as a sophomore because of the personnel we had. Seeing how athletic he is, we thought wide receiver would be his best fit down the road. The way he plays basketball, his leaping ability translates so well to wide receiver.”
The 6’1.5″, 185-pound Lewis excelled at wideout, hauling in almost 1,000 yards with 15 touchdowns. But as the 2009 season was winding down, Wyoming Valley West lost its starting quarterback to injury. Enter Lewis, who led the team to two wins from the starting signal caller spot.
As a result, Coach Keating decided to keep the standout athlete at quarterback...
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