Jack Tabb (Red Bank, N.J./Red Bank Catholic) is a player college coaches like at first sight because he has an impressive physique. They probably like him even more when they learn that he's played only one year of varsity football.
Tabb was among the top prospects who attended the second session of the Boston College camp this week. Tabb, who will be a senior next fall, worked out as both a tight end and a linebacker on Monday. Some schools have also told Tabb that they see him as a defensive end.
"I still feel like I have an edge at tight end, but the more I learn as a defensive player the more comfortable I'm becoming there," Tabb said.
Tabb, who stands a shade over 6-foot-3 and weighs 241 pounds, has received 19 scholarship offers. The most recent offer came from Arkansas last week.
Boston College, Florida, North Carolina, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, West Virginia, Virginia, Iowa and Wisconsin are among the other schools that have made offers.
Tabb made it clear that he'd prefer not to attend school too far from his New fJersey home, but one school could lure him out West.
"I don't want to leave the region, but if I was going to go out West, Oregon would be the school," Tabb said. "Oregon is sending me mail on a consistent basis. Oregon State too."
Tabb moved to New Jersey from Indiana after his freshman year, and didn't play football as a sophomore. Although he played in a run-based offense, Tabb caught seven passes for 177 yards and two touchdowns last season. Defensively, he made 52 tackles and recorded two sacks.
He said he hasn't started to trim the list of schools he's considering. He has scheduled unofficial visits to Pittsburgh, West Virginia and Virginia next week. He also said that Boston College is a school he's seriously considering.
"I like BC," he said. "I came here in the spring and it was a good experience. I felt comfortable with the coaches. I love the campus. They're definitely on my list."
Tabb said that he's satisfied with his current offers, but would like to add Notre Dame and Miami to the list.
"I'd just like to get offers from them because they're big-time programs," he said. "I'm hoping to make a decision during the season or right after. I definitely don't want to take it all the way to signing day."
Big man on campus
David Bowen (Villanova, Pa./Radnor) may have been the top lineman at the camp and he is attempting to mold himself into an FBS-level offensive tackle. He said he weighed 220 pounds after his junior season, but was up to 256 pounds when he weighed in on Saturday.
"I used to play lacrosse, but this year I decided to focus on the weight room," Bowen said. "It paid off."
Bowen said he's hoping to attract offers from Boston College and Penn State. He plans to attend Penn State's camp next weekend. He currently holds offers from Towson and Monmouth.
"Although they're not in a scholarship league, Bucknell told me I could get in there, which is the equivalent of a scholarship," Bowen said. "I've been told New Hampshire might offer. Temple might offer. BC says they really like me. Depending what I do [at camp] they might offer. I'm hoping to get an offer [from BC] at the end of the week. BC and Penn State are my top two."
Boston College offered quarterback Gary Nova (Elmwood Park, N.J./Don Bosco Prep) a scholarship, but he committed to Pittsburgh instead. Nevertheless, Nova and several of his Don Bosco teammates attended the BC camp.
"BC was definitely up there, but Pitt was the first to offer and they recruited two of our kids [Bryan Murphy and Brandon Sacco] the year before," Nova said. "I would want to go to that school even if football wasn't in the equation."
The 6-2, 198-pounder threw for 1,668 yards and 23 touchdowns with three interceptions last season, his first as a starting quarterback. He led Don Bosco to a 12-0 record and the program's fourth straight Non-Public Group 4 title.
Nova also received scholarship offers from Colorado, Vanderbilt, Purdue, Rutgers and Virginia.
"Miami was talking to me, but I didn't wait," Nova said. "I pulled the trigger. I just felt really comfortable at Pitt."
Linebacker Jason Sylva (Plymouth, Mass./Tabor Academy) entered camp with Boston College at the top of his wish list, and said nothing has changed.
"I like the school even more now that I'm here," Sylva said. "It's just a great place. I'm hoping to get an offer."
The 6-2, 220 pounder repeated his sophomore year at Tabor, and will be a junior in the fall.
Defensive back Albert Louis-Jean (Brockton, Mass./Brockton) was in attendance. He committed to Miami in March. ... Quarterback/defensive back Joe Spaziani (Hingham, Mass./Hingham), quarterback/linebacker Corey Edsall (Glastonbury, Conn./East Catholic) and running back/linebacker Ryan Murphy (Bridgewater, Mass./Bridgewater-Raynham) were some of the familiar names at the camp. Spaziani's father, Frank, is Boston College's head coach, Edsall's father Randy is Connecticut's head coach and Murphy's father Tim is Harvard's head coach. ... BC has received commitments from four players: tight end Brian Miller (Andover, Mass./Andover), defensive tackle Kieran Borcich (Bronxville, N.Y./Bronxville), defensive end Brian Mihalik (Avon Lake, Ohio/Avon Lake) and quarterback Christian Suntrup (St. Louis/Chaminade College Prep).
Roger Brown has covered football throughout New England since 1992. He publishes the New Hampshire Football Report and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.