Although he insists he was impressed with what North Carolina State had to offer both athletically and academically, Catholic Memorial quarterback A.J. Doyle recently decided he wants to play QB in college too.
N.C. State recruited Doyle to play linebacker, which explains why he decommitted from that school on Wednesday.
“N.C. State is a great school,” Doyle said. “It has a great campus, great coaches and great academics, but I've always played quarterback and I'll always be a quarterback. I feel I can be a Division I quarterback at a high level.
“I've been playing quarterback in organized football since I was seven. I don't want to give up on it yet. I decided to open up my recruitment and see if there's a school out there that still wants me to play QB.”
Doyle, who is 6-foot-3 ½ and weighs 215 pounds, committed to N.C. State in June. He also had scholarship offers from the UMass and Western Michigan. Both schools recruited Doyle to play quarterback.
“When I committed everything calmed down [in terms of recruiting],” Doyle said. “When I committed I was totally committed. It felt like the right move at the time.
“Then I started to have second thoughts: Do I really want to play linebacker in college? Why not seize the opportunity and explore other options? I talked with my family Sunday night and with my coaches Monday. The decision was made to reopen the recruiting process Monday.”
ESPNU has Doyle rated as a three-star recruit at quarterback, and the No. 5 prospect from Massachusetts in the Class of 2012. Catholic Memorial linebacker Camren Williams, Buckingham, Browne & Nichols offensive tackle Eric Olson, Catholic Memorial defensive back Armani Reeves and Dexter School linebacker Abner Logan are the Massachusetts recruits rated ahead of Doyle.
Williams and Reeves have each committed to Penn State, Olson committed to Northwestern and Logan is undeclared.
Two quarterbacks from the Class of 2012 have committed to Western Michigan, but Doyle said he kept in touch with UMass even after he committed to N.C. State. He said Boston College, Connecticut, Harvard and Penn State are among the schools that may have interest in him as a quarterback.
“Cam and Armani told me Penn State may still take a second QB,” Doyle said. “Western Michigan got a commitment right after I visited in June, so that door closed pretty quickly. UMass is definitely a possibility. It's close to home and they're moving to the MAC [in 2012].”
N.C. State may not be out of the picture either. Doyle said when he informed N.C. State recruiting coordinator Jerry Petercuskie of his decision Wednesday, Petercuskie said the N.C. State coaches would talk about it and get back to him.
“I'm not sure what that meant,” Doyle said. “It could be they want me to come in as a QB. They make decisions based on the fact that they're getting paid to win games.”
According to Doyle, his strengths as a quarterback are his leadership ability and his poise in the pocket. He said he may not select a college until National Signing Day in February.
“If I don't feel right about it I'll take it all the way to signing day,” Doyle said. “I'll make a decision when I can find a school I feel is right for me.”