By Ben Stroup
Ethan Tucky knew where he wanted to play college football … he just didn’t know if he’d be able to temper his excitement enough to hold off telling his 1,500-plus followers until his scheduled announcement via Twitter.
“I typed up the tweet at 5:55 (Sunday evening) and was just sitting, looking at my phone, waiting until 6 to send it out,” Tucky, who announced he’d play Division I football at Boston College following his senior season at Hayes, said. “I was so excited to be committing to an institution like Boston College. When I was looking at my phone there wasn’t a single doubt in my head … it just felt right.”
Sifting through his 15-plus Division I offers was the hard part, the All-Ohio linebacker said. Picking the right fit from the top five or so, though, was a breeze.
“The decision was based on three main things: the athletic side, the academic side and the spiritual side,” Tucky said. “Athletically, Boston College is headed toward being one of the best schools in the ACC; academically, I’ll be leaving with one of the best degrees, if not the best degree, in the ACC; and spiritually, it’s the only school in the ACC, and one of the only schools in the entire nation, that has the institution of God built around the college. When you look at it that way, from my standpoint, it was a no-brainer.”
“The choice typifies Ethan,” Hayes head coach Mike Golden said. “Very mature, very considered … for reasons both on and off the football field. Now he can just relax, play football and enjoy his senior season.”
After finishing with just two wins a couple years ago, the Eagles finished 7-6 last fall, dropping four games in the final few minutes of the fourth quarter.
“If they finish those four games they’re an 11-2 program, they win the ACC and who knows what happens after that,” Tucky said. “The direction the program is heading is outstanding, and I want to be a part of it.”
He also wants a part of earning one of the best degrees out there — something that will set him up for success when his days of playing football are behind him.
“From an academic standpoint, Boston College is one of the most prestigious schools in the nation,” Tucky said. “The fact I have the opportunity to go to such a school is outstanding to me because I very much value education.”
BC was also the first school among the Power 5 conferences to offer him a scholarship, giving it an edge among his other top contenders: California, Iowa, Kentucky and Wisconsin.
Tucky said he liked what California brought to the table from an educational standpoint, but it was too far from home — his family wouldn’t be able to travel to see him much and he wouldn’t be able to fly home very often, either. Iowa’s draw was its top-notch coaching staff, Wisconsin interested him because of its tradition and Kentucky would allow him to play in the SEC.
“Each school has great qualities,” Tucky said, “But at the end I could tell (BC) was right.”
Before he heads off to Boston, though, Tucky has a senior season at Hayes — one he plans to enjoy from start to finish.
“First of all I want to have fun,” he said. “It will be my last few months at Hayes, and even in Delaware for a while, and I want to enjoy every minute of it. I love my teammates, I love my coaches and I love the city of Delaware.”
He also wants to make his hometown proud.
“The other main thing I want to do is make the city of Delaware proud of the school,” he said. “There is something special going on now with Golden … the way coaches coach us and the way we train has changed. I absolutely love the city of Delaware. If I can have fun my senior year, have fun with my teammates and make Delaware proud, 20, 30, 40 years from now, when I’m looking back at my senior year, I can smile knowing I gave it my all to make Delaware proud.”
Follow Ben Stroup on Twitter @delgazette_ben.