Cover Photo Credit: Varsity Views
At 6’9″ 295 lbs and still relatively new to football, St. Francis’ 2017 OT Anthony De Feo has a lot of untapped potential. We talked schools showing serious interest in him, keeping his body in peak physical condition and being a leader on and off the field.
You can find Anthony on Twitter @adefeo7.
Anthony De Feo
Wt: 295 lbs
Commitment status: Undecided
LPI: You guys didn’t have the year you wanted finishing at 1-8 with a lot of that having to do with playing in the very tough Chicago Catholic league. Now that your season is over, what are you going to do to take your game to the next level this offseason?
AD: This year was a new and highly anticipated experience for me. Football wasn’t on my mind freshman or sophomore year of high school. Do I regret not playing? Absolutely. Shortly before transferring to St. Francis, I tore my ACL and Meniscus playing in my last basketball game of sophomore year. I transferred to St. Francis for my junior year, planning on finally suiting up for the first time since 8th grade; however, the 10 month ACL and Meniscus recovery kept me out of junior year football as well. This year was very special to me because despite the unfortunate year we had, I was finally able to experience the Friday night lights and worthy weekday practices with my teammates. Just like every offseason up to this point, I’ll be hitting the weights and putting on as much muscle as possible. Also, a big thing for me is that I maintain a high level of flexibility because it’s essential to remain flexible while adding strength, especially for my position on the field. Also, I intend to get my squat up after coming off of knee surgery a year ago.
LPI: You currently do not have any offers, but I believe you definitely have what it takes to play college ball. What skill set can you bring to the table for a college football program?
AD: As a 6’9” 300 pound offensive tackle, I believe I bring to the table a good frame while also being pretty agile and quick on my feet for a guy my size. Coaches have always told me in the past, “you can’t teach size,” and I definitely take that to heart. I think I’m a coachable player who is very capable of listening and learning. I also truly believe that I would bring the intangibles to a college program such as leadership, accountability, and resilience.
LPI: What schools have you been in touch with recently and do you have any planned visits coming up?
AD: So far, I’ve been in contact with The University of St. Thomas in Minnesota, Benedictine University, The University of Wisconsin-Platteville, Lake Forest College, St. Ambrose, Illinois Wesleyan, Carthage College, Augustana, and Findlay University in Ohio. I recently took a gameday visit to St. Thomas and really enjoyed it, and my hope is to visit the other schools soon as well.
LPI: On and off the field, how do you demonstrate leadership?
AD: One of the biggest forms of motivation that I have as far as demonstrating leadership is pretty simple-my reputation. You could probably ask any of my teammates, family members, or coaches; I love to have fun and I love to joke around. But I also think they would agree that I know when to draw the line. Being a leader both on and off the football field is essential to me because it’s how my reputation is formed and how my family’s reputation is formed. Succeeding and leading in the classroom is also just as important to me because I enjoy making good relationships with my teachers, shaping a good personality, and developing educational skills to set me up down the road. I also enjoy leading by setting examples so that the younger students and athletes at my school can learn from me.
LPI: Tell me about some of your teammates that can play at the next level, but are getting overlooked by college coaches.
Greg Bogdanski (class of 2017)– Greg is already committed to The University of St. Thomas in Minnesota, but could easily be playing at a D1 school somewhere. He’s a 6’2” 225 lb Fullback and Middle linebacker who plays with energy and excitement, no matter how early or late in the game. He was the head honcho of our team both offensively and defensively. Greg finished the year off gathering CCL All Conference, All Area, All State Honorable Mention, All State Academic Team, Illinois High School All-Star, Wintrust Athlete of the Week, and has been asked to compete in the Shrine All Star Game this coming up summer. And even better yet, he’s constantly a leader in the classroom and off the field, always setting examples and doing the right thing.
Shane Walker (class of 2017)– Shane is getting looked at by D1 and D2 schools and also has some offers scattered in. He’s a 6’5” 295 lb offensive and defensive tackle and plays with a nasty style. He moves very well for a guy of his size and he’s definitely one of the strongest kids on our team-always in the weight room before school. Easily could’ve been all-conference this year if he hadn’t torn his ACL against Ignatius mid-season. Besides football, Shane is a really solid, trustworthy person and leader for the younger guys on the team.
Andrew Olson (class of 2017)– Olson is getting looked at by mostly D3 schools, but just received his first offer from Valpo as well. He’s a 6’2” or 6’3” 230 lb defensive end/outside linebacker. Another guy who plays mean and dedicates solid hours in the weight room. He’s quick off the edge and a very versatile pass rusher. A big thing with Andrew is that he’s just a really, really smart guy both on and off the field. His football IQ is pretty impressive to watch, and he as well is very capable of leading the younger guys.
Gabe Meyer (class of 2017)– Gabe is all set to attend the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, and possibly play football there. Gabe is a 6’0” 240 lb offensive guard who plays nasty and aggressive. He’s also a very coachable lineman and ended the season with a CCL All Conference title.
Nolan Pechan (class of 2017)– Nolan is undecided on if he will be continuing his football career in college, but he definitely could. He is a 5’10” 180 lb running back who runs like a truck and runs full steam ahead. He has very impressive vision and makes quality cuts and knows when to hit the hole. He also plays some DB as a secondary position and displays his speed while covering receivers downfield. His vertical is very impressive, which is a big reason why DB is a good option as well for him.
As far as younger guys on the team, watch out for Jesse Gonzalez (class of 2019)– a very promising offensive lineman who has unlimited potential and very coachable, Joe Lang (class of 2019)– a speedy slot receiver and DB who is shifty and also very coachable, Sam Sidari (class of 2018)– a very quick and shifty running back who is capable of making unbelievable cuts, Dan Skold (class of 2019)– a nasty center who plays with heart and is made of pure muscle; also extremely coachable and willing to work, and Patch England (class of 2019)– a tall Quarterback with solid mobility and a strong arm.