Before anyone asks, yes many of the questions I posed to De'Andre are indeed the same ones I posed to Noah Beh. Throughout these interviews (fingers crossed that we continue to have many more) I'm going to ask questions specific to each guy, but I also want to keep those base questions the same, so we can see how different guys feel about the same subjects.
All of that being said, let's take a trip into the mind of PSU Class of '14 WR commit De'Andre Thompkins!
When your recruitment first started, was there anything specific you were looking for in a school? Did you have any ideas about where you thought you were going to end up?
I didn't know where I’d be, honestly, I guess you can say I went where the wind took me. Haha. But the key things my father, mother and I agreed on were: we'd look for a school that's high on academics, solid football program and I can make an immediate impact.
Was there a moment, or something that happened, that made you realize you wanted to come to Penn State? Or was it just a decision that you gradually came to a realization about?
When I went to Penn for the 2nd time with my father, that's when I knew it was for me. My mother loved the academics and tutors, and my father was impressed with the football side. That's when I knew, if I'm happy and they agree on it this much then its a place for me.
What's your favorite position to play? When you first began being recruited, did you have a preference where you wanted to go based on what position they wanted you for?
By far Wide Receiver! I wanted to play receiver at the next level but if I didn't perform at the level I felt I was good enough I'd have no problem moving to defense. I'd just want the chance to show what I do have on the offensive side.
Has the staff told you that you're going to stay at receiver, or are you going to get a chance to play anywhere else as well?
The staff has told me up front that I will be playing wide receiver.
Did you ever consider trying to do track in college instead of football? Were you being recruited by anyone for track?
Of course I've thought about it, but after much debate, I figured I'd stick with just football to develop into the best player I can be at the next level.
**Note: Having been a high school track athlete (and captain of his team, just throwin' that out there), I speak from experience when I tell you that De'Andre's times on the track are insane, especially for a rising senior in high school. He absolutely could have gone to a D1 school for track, and we're lucky that he would rather catch footballs here instead.**
Have you met any of the other current verbal commits in your class? Did any of them help nudge you towards Penn State? Have you been trying to persuade other uncommitted recruits to join you at PSU?
I've talked to almost all of the commits and I'm definitely trying to recruit for my team and build the best in the world. I'm not persuading more as informing them of why I chose the school and what great benefits you get from being a Penn Stater.
What do you think of the possibility of playing a game in Ireland?
It’s out of this world ! I still can't believe it. Not many people get to travel the world and play such an amazing sport. I'm excited!
What are you most looking forward to about Penn State? In a football sense, and in a non-football sense?
Most of all I'm looking forward to meeting the teammates I'll be spending most of my life with and bonding with. Also just the college experience, being responsible and on your own.
Do you have any idea what you're planning on majoring in yet?
I'm looking towards kinesiology. The human body is something most people don't understand so I'll likely be endeavoring in that major.
Finally, because the readers of this site have a never-ending debate on this subject, how important to you are uniforms? Would you rather be running out in a new uniform every week like Oregon does, or the same classic look every week like Penn State does (Please don't feel obligated to say Penn State just because you're coming here)?
The uniforms are by far becoming the coolest aspect of the game. But to me it doesn't matter what you wear, as long as you're producing on the field it doesn't matter. Either way they're going to get dirty so why go through all that just to mess up a beautiful jersey.
I think we can all learn from De'Andre's words of wisdom at the end there. "Either way they're going to get dirty".
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