It wasn’t long ago that we reported that Eastside Catholic OL Christian Shigley had seen an increase in interest as well as offers. After solid performances on the camp circuit this summer and late last week, the talented linemen decided to end the recruiting process and committed to play for Harvard over offers from Yale, Brown, Cornell and Tufts University.
“It was down to Yale and Harvard for me,” Shigley admitted to Northwest Elite Index this week. “They both have outstanding academics, everyone already knows that, but what it came down to for me was the football program and how I felt about the direction of things.
“At Harvard, the program there is phenomenal. The head coach, coach (Tim) Murphy, has been there 19 years and he’s had a ton of success there. Their facilities were also great and I just felt like it was the right place for me and where I wanted to be both academically and for football as well.”
When Shigley made the call, the Crimson coaches were understandably excited.
“They were really excited to get my commitment,” Shigley recalled. “I called them up and we were talking and I finally just said ‘how do I go about committing to Harvard’ and the coach I was talking to, my recruiter, he was like ‘Really? You’re really committing? That’s great!’ I just felt really welcomed. A day or two later, I called the offensive line coach (Jeremy Bandy) and talked to him and then the next day I talked to coach Murphy and made it official that I was committed to them.
“I’m just ecstatic about it and my parents are really excited too. They would have been happy with wherever I chose, but they are really excited for the opportunities I will have both on and off the field, so that’s another great thing about the whole situation.”
While Shigley has shown himself over the past few years to be a high-caliber football prospect, he’s also shown schools in the classroom, with his 3.91 GPA and in his community service that he is an even better student and person.
“We do a lot of volunteer work for our school and our program,” Shigley told NEI earlier this summer. “It’s something we all take a lot of pride in and something I really enjoy.”
And while he might be a well-spoken and cordial person off the field, once he steps on the field, Shigley is anything but making things very hard on Crusader opponents.
“Christian is just a solid, solid kid and a great leader for our team,” Eastside Catholic head coach Jeremy Thielbahr told NEI this offseason. “He’s pretty athletic and he’s got a great frame, so he’s only going to get bigger and stronger. I think he’s going to be a kid who really succeeds at whatever he does .”
Shigley manned the all-important left tackle spot for the Crusaders in 2011 and he’ll finish out his high school career at the same spot. While playing that position is one of the most important in the game, he doesn’t take it for granted and has been working hard this offseason to get ready to meet both his team and his personal goals.
“As a team, our goals are to beat O’Dea, to win the Metro League and to win a state championship,” Shigley noted. “For me personally, I want to get recruited to play for an Ivy League school, get a spot on the All-Metro League team and to put on about five pounds so I can play my senior season around 265.”