Safety, Class of 2022
Don Bosco Prep, Ramsey, NJ
After a tumultuous offseason and continued uncertainty, the season for Don Bosco Prep (NJ) and 2022 three-star safety Nicholas Alvarado will begin Oct. 2 against Paramus Catholic (NJ).
Because the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has caused changes on a daily and sometimes hourly basis, the game isn’t a certainty, but it’s at least in focus. The same goes for Alvarado’s recruitment. There are now 12 scholarship offers, including from schools like Virginia Tech, Rutgers, Indiana, Syracuse and Pittsburgh. Like many other high school recruits, however, a lack of visits has muddied Alvarado’s recruiting outlook. That’s made the season even more of a priority, as actual football is something players are able to control.
“It’s truly a blessing being able to play in hard times like this,” he said. “My mindset going in is I can’t wait to go and compete with my brothers, fly around, hit and have a good time, play against great competition. I’m definitely setting a few goals, trying to achieve those as a team and try to win games. Playing great defense, special teams and offense, just move it as a unit, the whole team, and succeeding. That’s my top priority this season. Being victorious and successful with the team.”
That’s something Alvarado said he’s talked about with a few members of the Virginia Tech staff. Defensive coordinator Justin Hamilton has been in contact and made an offer two weeks ago.
“I have nothing but great things to say about him and the staff,” Alvarado said. “I had a great conversation with him, just talking about recruiting, Virginia Tech itself, and great football. It’s a great place down there. I definitely want to visit as soon as COVID clears up. That’ll definitely be one of the first places I go visit.”
Alvarado said the conversations with Hamilton have put the Hokies in a strong position.
“The vibe I get from him, he’s a guy who loves the game, has a passion for football,” Alvarado said. “He’s looking for hard-nosed football players, who have physicality on defense. That’s definitely something I bring, and he’s a great guy. Just definitely a standup guy. I talked to him, had a nice conversation, and he offered. I’m looking forward to building our relationship and talking in the future.”
“It’s definitely a great place, great coaches, great atmosphere,” Alvarado said. “It’s a place to stay at home, the school of New Jersey. It’s always good things about Rutgers. Coach (Nunzio) Campanile, I’ve talked to. During the time I visited, it was Coach (Chris) Ash and a few other coaches. Just great people, great staff now at Rutgers.”
The visit Alvarado took to see the Golden Eagles was for a junior day earlier this year. It’s not a lot to go by, but still a glimpse of what to expect there.
“Great school, especially academically and athletically,” Alvarado said. “It’s a great mix of both. Coach (Jeff) Hafley is a phenomenal coach and better person. I talk to (Joe) Dailey a lot. He’s the one who recruits the New Jersey area. We’ve been on Zoom a lot, just catching up. The relationship I have is great, and that’s just a great school.”
Since the Sept. 1 beginning of the contact period with college coaches, Alvarado said he’s had a few good conversations. That’s brought a few schools to the forefront.
“I’ve talked to Coach (Tim) Salem a lot at Pittsburgh, multiple times a week, just talking about the school,” Alvarado said. “I’ve gotten mail from them, and that’s one of the few that stands out for sure. It’s a great culture...
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