Cooper Leonard watched video clips with Army offensive coordinator Drew Thatcher and the possibilities felt endless.
Leonard loved the design of the Black Knights’ new shotgun offense and the way wide receivers got open.
“That’s one of the things that made me commit to West Point,” said Leonard, a senior wide receiver from Fossil Ridge (Texas) High School. “It looks like a great offense to be a part of and can’t wait to get started.”
Leonard officially committed to Army head coach Jeff Monken and quarterbacks coach Cody Worley Monday, He announced his decision on July 4.
“It (the holiday) didn’t have an influence on making my decision on the 4th but it’s definitely a bonus because what other time to commit to Army West Point than on July 4,” Leonard said.
“I started talking to my parents about my decision and they put it all on me. Once I started thinking about it and talking to other adults, it made me realize how big of an opportunity it is and I decided to jump on it.”
Army was the first school to offer Leonard, who caught seven touchdowns and had 664 receiving yards as a junior. Air Force followed with Leonard’s second offer. Leonard visited Air Force in late June after Army.
Leonard was also impressed with Army’s “academic program and how much they value it and how going to West Point sets you up for life.”
“Army felt like more of a home,” Leonard said. “Air Force had the nice technology and stuff along those lines. Army, however, felt very much like a family and me and my family agreed that more important.”
Army is gaining a multi-sport athlete in Leonard. He grew up playing baseball and recently started pitching again for his high school team. Leonard also started running track and qualified for regionals running the 400-meter relay. He’s also snowboarded since he was five years old.
“Playing multiple sports helps you in categories you never know you had to improve,” Leonard said. “Baseball helps with a lot of hand-eye coordination. Track helps you become much faster and helps your form.”