Thirteen students sign National Letters of Intent

Sarah Kearby, Layout Editor

Three sports, 13 students, and two new records.

Thirteen JC students signed National Letters of Intent.  These letters allow them to play lacrosse, basketball and baseball in college next year. This is the highest number of JC athletes in history to sign with NCAA Division I programs in the early-signing period.

The baseball players also set a record. This is the first time JC has had three baseball signees in one class.

The nine lacrosse players who signed NLI are Faye Brust (University of Louisville), Melissa Cox (Mount St. Mary’s University), Cat Gordon (University of Louisville), Devin Hogan (University of Denver), Megan Langrehr (Monmouth University), Annie Thomas (Loyola University), Hannah Verschoore (James Madison University), Abby Wilson (Hofstra University) and Ricky DeMicco (Florida Southern College).

The baseball players included Brendan Butler (Towson University), Kevin Hockaday (University of Maryland) and Trent Shaw (University of North Carolina-Asheville).

Malcolm McMillan signed with Central Connecticut State University for basketball.

A NLI binds a student to a certain school for one academic year and provides athletic financial aid for that same year. “The NLI is a contract between you and the school you’re going to, stating certain rules and guidelines you have to follow,” Brust said.

Brust verbally committed to the University of Louisville in February 2010. Thomas verbally committed in September 2009 to Loyola University. Hockaday verbally committed in the fall of 2009 to the University of Maryland. Other signees had verbal communication with their schools before signing the NLI.

“Signing an NLI is a big deal for anybody. Not everybody gets one. As soon as I left my visit from Florida Southern, I knew that was where I wanted to begin my college years,” DeMicco said.

“I signed the NLI because I loved Mount St. Mary’s and their lacrosse program, and I wanted to confirm both my athletic and academic scholarships,” Cox said.

Signing a NLI is not only about signing a paper and getting a scholarship. It is also about committing to a college and determining the next year of your life with just one signature.

“Even after I told the coach I wanted to commit, it felt surreal. It still doesn’t feel like it really happened,” Langrehr said, reflecting on her decision.

Hockaday realized after his decision that hard work really does pay off. “[I have] a sense of relief now because I can relax and just worry about playing in my upcoming 2011 baseball season,” Hockaday said.

Hogan summed up the experience, saying, “It was pretty exhilarating when I found out about the signing. I was a little nervous since we are all ‘signing our lives away,’ but I am really excited to have the opportunity to play D I lacrosse, especially at Denver.”

Sarah Kearby can be reached for comment at [email protected].