LHHS multi-sport star verbally commits to New Mexico
by Chuck Licata
As he announced on his Facebook page, LHHS senior-to-be Jadon Boatright has given a verbal commitment to attend the University of New Mexico (Lobos), an NCAA Division I school where he will be given the opportunity to play in both football and track and field.
“They’re a big school, but not too big,” Boatright explained Sunday night. “This is a good opportunity to play some (of the) bigger NCAA Division I schools. Plus, there’s a chance I won’t be red-shirted my freshman year – I like that a lot.
“I like the weather up there. The weather seems to always be nice; it doesn’t quite get as hot (there) as it does here.”
Boatright, who counts Randy Boatright, Melissa Boatright, Bryce Boatright and Ty Boatright among his many supporters, won a bronze medal in the past spring’s Class 3A State Track and Field meet, will possibly see time participating in both track and field.
“(UNM track) Coach (Joe) Franklin talked about having me participate in the triple jump,” Boatright revealed. “But he also talked about having me run in (the shorter distances). We’ll see where that goes but it’s an exciting possibility.”
Boatright will suit up and play in the 2012 version of the Liberty Hill High School defensive backfield and possibly see time on the offensive side of the ball, too. Plus, the multi-talented Boatright is expected to handle the kicking duties for the Panthers this fall, just like he did last year.
Ironically, Boatright – who also heard from the likes of colleges like SMU – has yet to visit the UNM campus.
“No, I haven’t been to visit the campus yet,” Boatright explained. “I hope to get down there in October sometime.
“I made the commitment because all the coaches I talked to were great. They’re very realistic and very nice; they all seem pretty cool. I’ve done some research and the academics at the school are very high; that’s very important.”
The LHHS senior isn’t too concerned about the distance between Liberty Hill and New Mexico – on paper it’s listed as 675 miles (that’s a 10-plus hour drive, for those of you keeping score at home).
“I hope to get back as much as I can,” Boatright stated. “I’ll probably get homesick a lot at first but eventually I’ll settle in over there.”