April 14, 2009

Basil had good trips to OSU, Purdue

Despite being perhaps one of the most intriguing special teams players in the state of Ohio - particularly for his services as a placekicker, punter, and kickoff specialist - Chillicothe (Ohio) Chillicothe kicker Drew Basil has yet to pick up a scholarship offer.

While that may be the case as of now, Basil could be on his way to landing one shortly after visiting Ohio State and Purdue this past weekend. As of now, Ohio State, Purdue, Cincinnati, Air Force, and North Carolina State have all showed interest in Basil.

"The weekend went really well," said Basil, a 6-foot-2, 188-pound junior. "Thursday I went up to Ohio State to watch some of their spring practice and then we traveled over to Purdue and I got to watch their practice."

Basil was admittedly excited to get out to some Big Ten schools and see the format of their practices, specifically in regards to special teams.

At Ohio State's practice, Basil was excited about his encounter and conversation with Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel.

"As soon as we walked in, (Ohio State) started their kicking and they looked really good out there," Basil said. "While I was standing there and watching Jim Tressel walked by and talked to us for a while. It was pretty cool because I got to tell him who I was, where I was from and he knew who I was, and that got my attention."

Basil was also enthusiastic about the Purdue visit.

"It went really well," Basil said. "I got a tour of all their indoor facilities and everything and it was really nice. All their meeting rooms are really nice, and after we got done with the tour we went back up to the coach's office and I got to sit in on the special teams meeting, and that was really cool.

"They take their warm-ups seriously and do their jobs the way I need to," Basil said of Purdue's special team's units. "All in all, the visit was really nice."

Basil is coached by Tim Williams, former four-year starting kicker at Ohio State (1990-1993), and the kicker said Williams has done quite a bit in terms of helping him with his game.

Williams has worked with a handful of current Division I players and a few in the NFL and Basil is excited about the opportunity to work with him and to continue to grow as a kicker.

"He is a great guy. Whenever it comes to kicking, that is his business and he is serious about it," Basil said. "If I am doing something he doesn't like, he will be honest with me and wouldn't be one of those guys who tells you what you want to hear. He tells you what you need to hear and I have improved a lot."

As a junior, Basil went 8-for-14 on his field goal attempts, including one that was true from a school-record 50 yards out. On extra points, he was nearly perfect, drilling 35-of-37. In addition to 23 touchbacks on his kickoffs, Basil averaged an impressive 40.2 yards a punt.

Despite not yet receiving a scholarship offer, Basil said he is keeping it wide open. Even so, he was able to name a top three.

"Right now it is Purdue, Ohio State, and Air Force," Basil said. "There isn't really an order, but I would say Purdue has a little edge over the other two. I have to keep Air Force in mind because with military schools in mind because you can have a set future with them and with today's economy that wouldn't be a bad choice."

Basil has been in steady contact with Purdue, even before the trip this weekend, which is why he said the Boilermakers have a little lead on the competition.

That being said, however, Basil said an offer could change everything.

"I am not expecting any offers right now, but it would be nice to have some," Basil said. "I would like to get offers from any in my top three."

Ari Wasserman is a staff writer for BuckeyeGrove.com. He can be reached at [email protected].

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