CJ Reese was feeling good vibes from the time that he arrived for his Army visit this weekend to leaving for the airport Sunday.
Reese’s visit was so comforting that the Mountain Vista (Colo.) wide receiver didn’t wait until the end of his time at West Point to make his decision.
Reese committed to Army receivers coach Aaron Smith midway through the visit.
“Everyone was great and very informative,” Reese said. “If I had any questions, they would know the answer and reply immediately. These coaches really care about their players and the program.
“The visit definitely helped my commitment. I was supposed to fly out to another visit the day after I got back but once I saw the campus I realized it’s where I wanted to be.”
Reese cancelled a visit to FCS Northern Arizona. He was offered and had been talking to Washington State, Wyoming and Nevada. Army initially contacted Reese, who is 6-foot-4 and 195 pounds in August. Reese received an offer from the Black Knights in December. Air Force, which is less than 50 minutes from Reese’s high school, recruited him early but did not offer.
Army’s strength and conditioning program and its facilities were a draw to Reese.
“The things that stood out from the rest were how well the strength coaches keep their players in shape and putting fuel in their bodies to replenish and build and how nice their facilities are,” Reese said. “Every aspect was amazing from the weight room, locker room, training room, two outdoor fields and gigantic indoor field.”
Reese’s father and grandfather. Charles Reese Jr. and Charles Reese Sr., both served in the Army. But, the younger Reese never thought the Army would be in his future growing up.
Reese said sophomore wide receiver Noah Short, his host during the visit, helped processing the daily life of a West Point cadet and football player.
“He (Reese) told me the in and outs of being a football player at Army and would talk to me throughout the visit when we went bowling, to dinner and went to Dave and Buster’s,” Reese said.
Reese, who played his senior season at Mountain Vista, had seven catches for 150 yards and a touchdown in the first half against his former team Thunder Ridge. Though Army doesn’t throw the ball often, Reese believes the Black Knights’ offense fits his playing style, “perfect.”
“They set up long balls (passes) because often times defenses can’t stop their run so when opponents blitz heavy, it leaves me to go and be big against a cornerback or safety,” Reese said. “Army likes to take deep shots, which is one of my biggest skill sets from tracking the ball, looking it in to jumping up and needing to make a play.”