“I told him (Mike London) I was happy to be committed to the University of Virginia and he jumped out of his chair and gave me a big hug and gave my parents a big hug. It was a great experience,” said C.J. Stalker as he replayed the moments of his commitment to Virginia.
”It was a great feeling, extremely humbling,” said Stalker. “It was cool to see his reaction. I didn’t think at all he was going to react that way. It was really humbling.”
The West Chester (Ohio) Lakota West linebacker made his pledge to London during his recent trip.
”We were told we weren’t going to meet Coach London until Wednesday, because he was going to be gone for ACC Media Day,” he explained. “But we were sitting in the defensive meeting room with coach (Jon) Tenuta, coach Price and a few others and a GA came in and asked if we would want to meet coach London and obviously yeah we did. It kind of caught me by surprise.
”When it was quiet enough for me to talk a bit for a second, I just explained where I was at the process. It ultimately came down to Virginia, University of Louisville and University of Cincinnati. It was really between those three. But I explained to him there wasn’t really a better fit for me as far as it being the number one public university in the country-one of the top medical programs in the nation. A degree from the University of Virginia is globally recognized, that speaks volumes. I explained how I felt at home; how it was a great place for me; and how I can see myself spending four or five years.”
Although his decision came just this week, the Wahoos established themselves as a favorite back in March, when the 6-foot-2, 229 pounder made his first trip to Charlottesville. During that trip, defensive coordinator Jon Tenuta introduced Stalker to several UVa doctors from the medical school. With Stalker hoping to study Biology or Kinesiology in order to become an Orthopedic Surgeon, those introductions really set the Cavaliers apart.
“I would say that had probably the greatest impact on me,” he stated. “I was able to talk to a few doctors at the other places, but really it was not the same. They did not speak of their experiences at their respective schools as the different doctors I spoke with at UVa. The head of the medical school told me he would advise me if I were to come there. They were over the top for me, and they really pitched a great presentation to me on why UVa and Charlottesville was the ideal place for me.”
With this commitment official, Stalker is now hoping to begin his own pitch to several UVa targets.
”I am going to do my best,” he laughed.