Mike Tyler (Broadview Heights, Ohio/Brecksville-Broadview Heights) calls himself a “late bloomer,” which is why these last two weeks have been a complete shock to him.
The 6-foot-5, 220-pound tight end/defensive end picked up offer No. 8 on Wednesday, and all eight have come over the last two weeks.
“I wasn’t expecting to get all these offers,” Tyler said. “… It’s getting crazy and hectic. It’s crazy but I’m loving it.”
Among his seven offers, Pittsburgh is the lone program in a BCS conference. The Panthers offered late last week and like Tyler at tight end. Tyler has made a handful of visits, but Pitt was not one of them.
He does plan to make it there soon for two days and a camp to work with tight ends coach Joe Rudolph.
“I don’t know the date, but I think I’m doing a two-day thing,” he said. “One day I’ll be taken around campus and then (the next day) work with Coach Rudolph.”
Air Force, Ball State, Bowling Green, Harvard, Ohio, Western Michigan and Yale have also offered Tyler. Ball State, Bowling Green, Ohio and Western Michigan like him as a defensive end while the others are recruiting him as an athlete.
The Ball State coaching staff visited Tyler at his school Wednesday and offered him later that night during a phone call. Tyler caught passes with quarterback Tommy Tupa for a Ball State assistant. Though the Cardinals are recruiting him as a defensive end, the athletic ability he showed at tight end confirmed to the Ball State assistant he is what the team is looking for at end.
“Seeing me run around, it finalized their decision,” Tyler said.
Tyler is not sure whether he wants to play tight end or defensive in college despite spending most of his career at tight end. An injury his freshman season forced him to move to the defensive line.
“I had surgery on my thumb and broke my thumb and was in an arm cast so I played defense and had the club and did really well,” Tyler said. “Most of my film is on defense. This upcoming season I’m playing both ways, but I love them both.”
With a pair of Ivy League offers as well as interest from Cornell, Princeton and a few other Ivy League programs, Tyler said he is willing to commit to an Ivy League school over a BCS offer.
“I haven’t made up mind at all,” Tyler said, “but I’m for sure willing to go an Ivy League for education because I’m big on grades.”
He has no favorites.