He, Kambriel Willis, current 4A State Champion Booker T. Washington and future FIU Golden Panthers linebacker, would be talking about FIU football. And you thought I got Arnold Jackson on the GPP? Dialed Kambriel up yesterday and this is what he had to say:
GPP: What attracted you most about FIU?
KW: FIU is really beginning their program and I know it's going to be big-time. The coaches made me feel real comfortable. And it's also a chance for me to develop a program right in my own backyard.
GPP: What was it about the FIU coaches that you felt real comfortable with?
KW: They were frank. There was no sugarcoating what they expect at FIU. They also let me speak to some of the FIU players. That was decent of them, because I've been on other visits where not all the coaches let you do that. They made me feel like family. I already knew [defensive back Anthony] Gaitor and Devin Parrish so that also made me feel at home. I also talked to some scouts and they kept telling me coach Cristobal is a good coach and a good guy. That right there told me something, because scouts don't normally talk up coaches.
GPP: What else did you like about the FIU football program?
KW: I like their defense and the different schemes. I think I can play a major role on that type of D. I also saw the new stadium. When that thing gets done it's going to be one of the best stadiums in Florida.
GPP: How much do you think having a brand new stadium helps lure players to a relatively new program like FIU?
KW: A brand new stadium can motivate any player to come play there. To know I am going to be part of the team that opens that stadium is something special. You want to make a statement playing in a place like that. It's the beginning of a new era at FIU.
GPP: How did you like the FIU campus?
KW: That campus is huge. It's so big that when I first was going there I found it hard to find where the team practices, because there are so many buildings and places at FIU. I also liked that FIU is near the Dade County Youth Fair, because I always love going to the Fair.
GPP: Are there any of your teammates from your state champion team that are thinking of joining you at FIU this upcoming season?
KW: I'm going on a visit to FIU this weekend with [defensive end] Jonathan Jackson, [linebacker] Winston Fraser, [linebacker] Tarvis Pullins and [linebacker] Franklin Brown. I'm ready to go right now. I want to come now and start playing already.
Kambriel wanted Golden Panthers fans to get a chance to see his highlight video. So the GPP obliged. So here it is Kambriel: Kambriel Willis highlight tape
More FIU recruiting news: After a few more phone calls made by the GPP, here are the latest oral commits for FIU. OL Stephen Bailey (Delray American Heritage), DB Derrick Clark (Apopka), DT Andre Pound (Sebastian River) and DT Donnell Wilson (Golden Gate). Seems like FIU is loading up on defense. Which is not a bad idea considering all the offense the Golden Panthers signed last season. Again these are verbal so enjoy them for what they are worth.
Originally wrote on here that FIU recruiting story in the Herald runs next Wednesday, Jan. 30. Check that, the story will be running in Monday's Jan. 28 Miami Herald.
fiugrad78: The FIU baseball team already played their exhibition last November against Canada. But the Golden Panthers will have some intra-squad scrimmages next Friday, Feb. 1, Saturday and Sunday. Been told they are open to the public. Friday's will be at night, time has yet to be set. Saturday and Sunday are during the daytime. When I get times I'll post on here.
UltimateFIUFan: By looking at past FIU hoops rosters, there doesn't seem to be much local recruiting for FIU hoops, which is a shame, because there is plenty of local talent available. They are having technical difficulties loading the Blustein interview regarding FIU recruiting on the Herald website. I'll post it on here when it's ready. I've been told FIU baseball and hoops jerseys will be available for purchase on the fiusports.com site soon.
CJ: Spread FIU articles on the blog as you like. They're always welcomed here.
NYCFIUFan: None of FIU's football recruits are enrolled at FIU yet. As far as the Sun Belt, FIU probably and should be atop the conference when all the classes are signed this season. We're in the hotbed of football recruiting and it is finally being taken care of by the FIU coaches.
FIUBlueandGold: For the first few years of the stadium, the press box will be on the same level as the club suites. When the upper deck is added, the press box will move to the upper deck. The field at the new stadium, like the stadium itself, will not be available until August 28 when the stadium is completed. Too many liabilities, opening up the stadium to the public during construction. This year's spring game will likely be at the recreation fields just south of SW 8 Street.
John Petika: Welcome to the GPP. You are the first "known" FIU player to post on the GPP. Congratulations. I got a feeling you and the rest of the baseball team will have a lot more support this season. Question to the GPP faithful: Who does Petika resemble more Tigers pitcher Kenny Rogers or NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon? You decide.
RabidPantherFan, Darriet Perry, bsparFIU & Sunblazer: Welcome all to the GPP.
We'll finish our Q & A with TT on the next blog.
Official GPP Countdown to the Opening Day vs. USC at FIU: 28 days.