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Gino's Story

Posted by saraallent on Apr 22, 2008 7:21:07 PM

US Naval Academy '00 - Football

I played football at the United States Naval Academy. How did I end up there?  Well, that is my story, and it starts with my recruiting experience.


I have been blessed with enough ability to always be competitive in the majority of the sports I played.  Sprouting up to a ripe 6’ 2”, I played football since 5th grade.  In high school, I was able to stand out on the field and have pretty impressive stats.  As is the case with most aspiring athletes, I would excel in high school, but my size, speed and strength were a little off the mark and search radar for most of the big time football scouts. 


I had initial interest from some good schools early my junior year, so I was at least optimistic with my chances that something would work out and I would get a partial if not full ride to a major D-1 school.  Couple this with having the typical high school adolescent big fish in a small school syndrome and you had the recipe for some major disappointment and a rude awakening when none of the big name schools came knocking with offers.  I was devastated or at least extremely surprised.  I could not believe that no one wanted me to play D-1 football in college.  On top of that, James Madison University, which is D-1 AA, asked me if I wanted to walk on!


I am not the sharpest pencil in the box, but I have great parents, who always made me hit the books and get good grades.  So with a pretty good GPA and a decent SAT score I was pursued by a lot of the military service academies (West Point, Air Force Academy and Naval Academy).  These were all D-1 football programs, so I seriously considered all of them.  With my old man being a former alumni and player himself at the USNA (Class of ’70), it did not take me too long to accept an admission letter to the Naval Academy.


I decided to go to the Naval Academy because it allowed me to play major D-1 football and play against some of the best teams in the country.  Also, I would receive a good education, which would be free.  Furthermore, my old man was a career Navy man himself, following in his footsteps seemed like a pretty good plan.  Plus, having a job guaranteed for the first five years of leaving college was a huge plus!


I am very proud to have been a student-athlete at the Naval Academy. I have zero regrets and would not have traded my experience for anything.


Good luck!








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