2018 DE/TE Mike DeHaan is a gamer that has Power 5 upside and recently picked up his 1st offer from FCS Illinois State. We talked being an exemplary student in the classroom, being in season year round and FBS schools showing serious interest in him.
You can find Mike on Twitter @MddehaanMike.
Tinley Park, IL
Wt: 225 lbs
Commitment status: Undecided
LPI: Now that your season is over it’s already time to get ready for next season. What are you going to do to take your game to the next level this offseason??
MD: I have never really had an “offseason” because I also play basketball for my school, Andrew High School. I enjoy playing basketball and it is great conditioning that also helps me to continue to work on my agility and footwork. Once the high school basketball season concludes, I will play AAU basketball with Windy City Magic, and I work with a personal strength coach at PSP Fitness. Once summer starts, I will continue to workout with my strength coach, and both my school football and basketball teams. My personal goal this offseason is just to get bigger, stronger, and quicker by gaining lean muscle mass and working out.
LPI:You recently picked up your first scholarship offer from Illinois State. Besides great size, what skill set can you bring to the table for a college football program?
MD: Besides my size, I believe that I can offer a lot to any football program. I have played multiple sports my entire life, and that has taught me the value of being a part of a good team. I value being a part of a team and feel that I am a leader on the field. I always play and practice with that in mind, I want my teammates to excel and I want to work hard for my team, school, and coaches. I am eager to learn and improve my game, and I will put in the extra time before or after practice. I pride myself on being a coachable player and always give my best effort.
LPI: Besides the school that has offered you, which schools have shown serious interest in you?
MD: I have had conversations with coaches from Illinois State, Northern Illinois, and have recently received an invite to Miami of Ohio. I also was invited to and attended a game at Purdue this past fall.
LPI: Where have you visited most recently and do you have any planned visits coming up?
MD: I have been to a game and recruit day at Purdue and I am currently planning on attending Junior Days at Northern Illinois, Illinois State, and Miami of Ohio.
LPI: On or off the field, how do you demonstrate leadership?
MD: I definitely see myself as a leader both on the field and in my school community. In football, I have been on varsity as a sophomore and I believe that I lead by example each and every day. When I step on the field, I am completely focused on whatever tasks the coaches have planned and I give my best effort. I participate in all team activities and promote building strong relationships amongst my teammates. In the classroom, I am in the top 1% of my class of 500 students and I take my academics very seriously. In the school community, I am a member of the Superintendent’s Advisory Board, Student-Athletic Leadership Board, National Honor Society, Variety Show, Junior Class Council and Spanish Honor Society. I support my school in anyway that I can and I always represent my school in a positive manner, in sports or other activities. I can honestly say, I value my school and all that it offers and I just want to make the most of my high school experience.
LPI: Who are some of your teammates that you believe can play at the next level, but have gone overlooked by college coaches?
Tommy Piekarz – MLB 6’0” 210 JR (two year starter) can play at the next level. He is strong, tough, and a great tackler with a nose for the ball. Tommy also has a very high motor and football IQ
Cole Griffin – RB 6’0” 190 JR is showing great signs of being able to play at the next level. He can run power, zone, catch, block, and get away from tacklers. He is a very tough competitor. Cole is dedicated in the weightroom and as a result has a very strong lower half.
Austin O’Connor – OL 6’3” 300 JR can play next level. He is a football and workout junkie. He can zone step as well as drive block and pass block. Austin is light on his feet and is very strong in the weight room.
Two sophomores that started on Varsity this year are: Adam Juma DL/OL 6’3” 275 and Ameer Aqel 6’2” 205 OLB/DE. Adam is very powerful and explosive at the point of contact. He also has strong hands and uses it to his advantage. Ameer is twitchy and has a great first step off the line. He is a ball hawk and an effective tackler. Ameer is a very tough and gritty player with determination and a lot of natural ability.