Update: Derek Dressler has committed to Concord University.
“Football is life to me. It’s been something that’s been passed down from generation to generation in my family, and there’s nothing that can really replace it. It’s basically a part of the family.”
Derek Dressler said these words with the passion and dedication of someone who loves football. They were said by someone who has had football in his life since he was born.
In fact, his love of football started generations before him and was passed down over the years. Now, it’s that familiar bond that has him dealing with the wait for his first offer.
Dressler plays offensive guard at Covington High School. While he has been in talks with schools about a scholarship, and has attended five camps this summer, (Duke, NC State, Richmond, JMU, and Virginia Tech) Dressler’s phone hasn’t rang.
When asked whether the waiting game was difficult, Dressler chuckled and responded, “Oh yeah.”
“It’s probably one of the most difficult things I’ve lived through. There’s nothing I can do about it except to go out there and do my thing,” Dressler said.
Dressler says everything he has done has been so that he could get that first offer. It’s always on his mind when he is working out and preparing for his upcoming season.
The recruit attended Virginia Tech camp in June. After talking to Offensive Line Coach Stacy Searels, Dressler says Tech really likes what they see and will send a recruiter up to Covington in the fall.
Dressler, while keeping an open mind about all schools, would love to attend Virginia Tech because of the sentimental value. His father, grandparents, and other members of his family all were Hokies at one time.
“I know they’re D1 and most people would say I’m just choosing them because they’re a bigger school, but it’s sort of a legacy in my family,” Dressler said.
If Dressler was to receive an offer from Virginia Tech, he thinks they would most likely be looking at him as a defensive tackle. His size at 6’2, 305 lbs, is perfect for a defensive lineman.
“The only thing stopping me right now is my speed. I know my strength is perfect, and my size is perfect for a defensive line guy. As long as I can get my speed down I should be good to go,” Dressler said.
The fact that his size is right for the defensive line, but his speed is right for the offensive line, has become a problem for Dressler. He believes that could contribute to his lack of offers. Teams just aren’t sure what to do with him yet.
He has been working on his speed all summer so that he can be more marketable as a defensive tackle. By practicing different agility drills, Dressler hopes to get his speed down.
He has been doing some offseason work with his brother too. They hit the weight room together, and it has ultimately brought them closer together.
“There’s nothing else like it. It’s a bond that nothing can break,” Dressler said. “Working beside him is pretty neat. You’re there in game situations, fans cheering and stuff, it’s just a special bond.”
His brother is just another example of how football runs in the Dressler family. Someday the two may even play for the same school.
“We always talk about having a two in one deal package, so if they get older brother they might get younger brother as well,” Dressler said while laughing.
Whether it is working with his brother in the weight room, or playing catch with his dad in the backyard, family is important to Dressler. He hopes that when he selects which college he is going to, he will be able choose one close to home.
With the season coming up, Dressler now his to play out the waiting game. Hopefully nerves won’t get in the way.
“The last thing I need to do is worry about getting an offer. I need to go out there, and I need to play. I need to go out there and do what I know I can do,” Dressler said confidently.
In as soon as a month we may see if that confidence that Dressler displayed pays off.
After all, with generations of football on your side, what more do you need?