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Chargers set to sign GR star


By RJ WALTERS / Daily News Sports Editor

Similar to yesterday’s blog, but an official story with a few new additions, was published in Jan. 23 edition of the Hillsdale Daily News

If published reports are indeed correct, the Division 3-4 Michigan Football Player of the Year Joe Glendening will officially become a Hillsdale Charger on Feb. 4.

If published reports are indeed correct, the Division 3-4 Michigan Football Player of the Year Joe Glendening will officially become a Hillsdale Charger on Feb. 4.

Could a youngster dubbed “Joe the Show” make Charger football fans go whoa?

If several published reports come to fruition on National Signing Day (Feb. 4) then it appears as if Hillsdale College faithful will have a chance to answer that question themselves.

According to a Jan. 21 article by Jane Bos in the Grand Rapids Press the Associated Press Division 3-4 Football Player of the Year, East Grand Rapids High School running back Joe Glendening has decided on a school and plans to commit to Hillsdale to play football.

Hillsdale College coaches are not at liberty to discuss his potential signing due to NCAA recruiting rules and regulations, but several inside the athletic department have hinted that a big-time recruit may be in the fold the past few weeks.

The 5-foot-10, 185-pound Glendening, who also was named Gatorade Rise Player of the Year for Michigan, plans to sign a letter of intent Feb. 4.

Glendening set a school record for most rushing yards in a season with 2,598, helping guide his team to a Division 3 state title in 2008.

He eclipsed the previous mark of 2,507 set in 2003 by Kevin Grady Jr., who now is at Michigan.

During the playoff run, Glendening also rushed for a school-record 398 yards and seven touchdowns on 13 carries against Mount Pleasant, and he tied Grady’s state record for most career touchdowns at the state finals with seven.

On ESPN.com he is ranked the 203rd best athlete in the 2009 recruiting class and it says he has been considering Ball State and Central Michigan, two top-tier MAC program.

On the ESPN Web site he is given a scouts rating of 65 and one observation from a college scout is, “Glendening is well-rounded, instinctive football player who could find a role on either side of the ball at the mid-major level and add quality depth on special teams.”

Those comparisons are made in regards to athletes at the Division I level, not Division II.

On Rivals.com it states that Glendening has medium interest in Central Michigan and there are several highlight videos of him.

Glendening was an all-state selection in football, hockey and lacrosse as a junior and an All-American in hockey and lacrosse. He also plays basketball for the Pioneers.

According to a Detroit Free Press article from December Glendening has a 3.76 weighted grade-point average and has volunteered as a tutor and literacy outreach mentor for younger students in his school system as well as for the East Grand Rapids High Youth Development wellness program.

If the Chargers do indeed sign Glendening it won’t be the first time they’ve dipped into the Grand Rapids talent pool.

Hillsdale had four players with ties to Grand Rapids on their roster last season, including starting quarterback Troy Weatherhead (Comstock Park), all-conference linebacker Tom Korte (Catholic Central) and all-conference offensive lineman Jared Veldheer (Forest Hills Northern).

Throughout the off-season it has been assumed that senior-to-be Vinnie Panizzi will be the starting running back for the third straight season.

He ran for 1,086 yards and 11 touchdowns during the Chargers’ 7-4 campaign.

The Daily News will provide full coverage and commentary of National Signing Day in its Feb. 5 edition.

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About rjwalters

I am what you think I am — a journalist. Actually when I was hired at my current job, which by the way is Sports Editor of the Hillsdale Daily News in Hillsdale, Mich., I applied for a position titled "Wordsmith", so at my best I'll call myself a writer attempting to be a wordsmith extraordinaire.

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