Do you know how tempting it is to not write my title as something like "Seantrel Henderson picks (insert school)", then start the post with "just kidding, I just wanted to get a ton of cheap hits." VERY tempting, but back to the topic at hand...
The Star Tribune's John Milea wrote what to date has to be the definitive article on the nation's number one high school player. There is a lot of good information here getting at more of the personality of Seantrel. Don't expect to see a definitive ranking of his top 3 or 5 or 6 schools or any hints as to what school he is leaning towards, but this is a really good read.
Seantrel the Protector
"He's not a violent dude," his father said. "Look at the position he plays; he's a protector. I think the violence was too much for him. He didn't mind getting hit; it was the fact that he didn't like hitting people."
When Henderson was 10 or 11 and playing youth football, he tackled a player so hard that the kid was taken to the hospital in an ambulance.
"He felt bad," his mother said. "It happened so fast and he was so sad. Most kids probably wouldn't have cared about it so much, and he was like the opposite."
Kind of interesting that such a large young man who plays such a violent sport is by all accounts a considerate and mild-mannered person. This is not the only quote that eludes to Seantrel not being the over-aggressive animal that we can often assume large individuals who play big-time football can be.
In case you didn't know, he's really big
"The first time I saw him, I thought he was a coach," said Riley Dombeck, now a senior defensive lineman. "Then I found out he was in my grade and I was like, 'Oh, wow.'
"He's got the biggest hands you'll ever go against. Every other lineman's hands are kind of normal size, but Seantrel has these big bear claws. And when he gets his hands on you, you can't do much about it."
Nobody who has paid attention is surprised that SH is big. He is huge. I talked to someone who saw him at Gopher practice who said that he was bigger than Jeff Wills. Not fatter, but taller with wider shoulders. There is no denying that this kid, who has not yet turned 18, is a monster. A nimble monster who may very well be playing college basketball at whatever school he chooses to attend. Seantrel is the Shaq of football. Freakishly huge with uniquely quick feet to go along with it.
Tom Lemming commented on his size as well.
Lemming calls Henderson "a freak of nature." "They come along every four or five years, great left tackles like that," he said. "Wherever he goes [to college], they're going to build around his talent."
- Seantrel weighed 7 pounds, 9 1/2 ounces and was 22 1/2 inches long when he was born in January 1992, a month ahead of his due date.
- The article practically gives us his address (at least the general vicinity). Although it doesn't say where they all plan to live in about 4 or 5 years.
- Size 16 shoe
- He's learning how to cook, mostly burgers and chicken at this point.
This is fun to track the nation's best football player who is in our back yard. And it is fun to wish and hope he chooses the U of Minn to continue his career. But articles like this remind you that he is just a kid, having fun playing football, who has far more pressure and greater decisions to make than I've ever had to deal with.
During his freshman year, Henderson wrote a paper titled "What I Want To Do With My Life." He wrote that he dreamed of playing in the NFL or the NBA and taking care of his parents and grandparents.
"Seantrel wants to save the world," his father said. "He's been given a gift.
By all accounts he appears to be a good kid who desires to take care of his family. Milea's article also gave the appearance that he works hard and knows nothing will be handed to him when it comes to his football career. I hope he has a great time with this process and I want him to have an outstanding college experience. His shoes, regardless of size, are only partially enviable. I don't know the kid but I really do wish him the best, wherever he ends up playing his college ball.
The Map...updates will be there with shoe size and everything.
View Seantrel Watch in a larger map
The completely unofficial and arbitrary leaderboard
- USC - he's visiting Ohio State when they are playing USC, he's visiting Notre Dame when they are playing USC and of course he is going out to see USC. He's also guaranteed a game in Minnesota for friends and family, USC just feels lik the leader to me.
- Minnesota - I hear rumors all the time that he really does want to stay here and be a program changer. But two things have to happen. First, we need to win this year and give him confidence that he'll have a shot at a Big Ten title while here. Secondly, I think we need to show that MarQueis Gray is going to be a very good QB. He has said in the past that blocking for a dynamic QB is important to him (kind of helps with the whole winning thing).
- Oklahoma - the Sooners came on later than the rest (at least according to rumors, message boards and recruiting site info), but they earned an official visit.
- Notre Dame - never rule out the Irish on a CDH kid.
- Ohio State - they are fifth here but I don't think anybody would be shocked to see the Buckeyes end up with SH.
- Michigan - Once thought to be one of the leaders but recently has felt on the outside looking in. Besides they have Taylor Lewhan. :)