Thomas Dale DE Rick D’Abreu commits to JMU (Twitter Photo)
Thomas Dale DE Rick D’Abreu all in on James Madison University
by Brandon Mitchell, recruit804
James Madison University has been quite the breeding ground for local prospects over the last handful of years.
Prospects throughout the Central Region have expressed on multiple occasions the lack of support from its local colleges, but James Madison continues to answer the call. Earlier in the off-season the Dukes received a commitment out of Hermitage speedster C.J. Jackson as well as Thomas Dale defensive end Dusan Stjepanovic. Hanover wide receiver Jack Chenault secured a preferred walk-on position with the Dukes and Hermitage linebacker Mateo Jackson committed to JMU a month before Chenault. Jack Sroba, Rashad Robinson, Taurus Carroll and Mike Greene- many student athletes situated in the Central Region have taken advantage of what Mike Houston and his coaching staff are trying to implement.
Next on the list to make the transition from high school to college football will be Thomas Dale defensive end Rick D’Abreu (2019 DE 6-2 241) and he’ll do so at James Madison. However, when did “Slick Rick” know that JMU was going to be the pick?
“I kind of felt it while I was out in Mexico,” D’Abreu told recruit804.
The Thomas Dale product spent most of July in Arizona and Mexico while playing for the U.S. National Team in the IFAF World Championships. With much of his time committed to attempting to secure a gold medal for the U.S. National Team; it’s amazing that he even had time to think of anything outside of the game of football.
“I had been talking to a few guys who were already going and I wasn’t really persuaded, but it was still in my mind. I was close but I wasn’t quite ready to make a decision. I knew that if I was going to make a decision I wanted to do it with my team. What made the iceberg tip was all the people at JMU or who went to JMU said it was the best experience of their life and best decision they ever made,” D’Abreu stated.
Prior to his commitment, D’Abreu collected 18 offers in total with his most notable ones coming from: Delaware, East Carolina, William & Mary, Penn, Yale, Coastal Carolina, Richmond and James Madison. He was fresh off of visits to Maryland and West Point while receiving heavy recruiting interest from Coastal Carolina, Liberty, Richmond and East Carolina. Last year, D’Abreu posted a stat line of 75 tackles and eight sacks. This year Thomas Dale threatens to have one the most potent defensive line units in Division 6 with D’Abreu being joined by Shymeen Provost (2020 DT 6-2 255), Justin Tate (2020 DT 6-3 250) and sophomore sensation Bryce Carter (2021 DE 6-3 240).
All-in-all, D’Abreu lauds the opportunity to play for one of the best football programs in the state of Virginia in James Madison.
“It’s (James Madison) a place to get a great education meet new people, win championships and they have the best fans in the world,” D’Abreu said.
– Brandon Mitchell
Junior highlights for Rick D’Abreu: