Ryan Dunfee’s college football commitment was coming down to a tough decision.
All three service academies had offered the Claremont (Calif.) defensive end/linebacker.
Dunfee visited Army first and then Navy over the weekend. His decision was beyond football.
Talks with Army recruiting coach Sean Saturnio were not centered the Xs and Os. They were about the prestige of West Point.
“We talked about how great of a school West Point was,” Dunfee said. “They also showed the alumni at the football briefing (during his visit) and I was blown away with how many business CEOs graduated from West Point.”
Dunfee returned home to weigh each academy. He called Saturnio and coach Jeff Monken with his commitment Thursday.
“After my visit to Army and Navy, I did a lot of homework and decided what I felt was best in my heart, which was Army,” Dunfee said.
“Leading up to my visit, the coaches were super friendly all the way up to when I got to campus. Coach Saturnio was constantly in contact with me and always talking to me about different things outside of football.”
Army is recruiting the 6-foot-3, 220-pound Dunfee to its “dog” position on the defense, the same one Andre Carter played the last three seasons. Navy wanted Dunfee to play tight end. Coach Brian Newberry presented Dunfee with his offer during his Navy visit. Air Force, Dunfee’s first offer, projected him as a bandit similar to Army’s “dog”.
Dunfee’s Army visit was a family affair. His father, younger brother, grandfather and grandma made the trip. His mother stayed back in California with his sister. Terry Smith, his grandfather, played football at Virginia Military Institute. Dunfee snapped as many photos as he could during the visit including ones with his brother at Trophy Point.
“I loved the campus,” Dunfee said. “The barracks were nice and outdoors. I’m an avid outdoorsman that likes to hunt and fish.”