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Tracking the Stars of the Future

Football Recruiting Report
Friday, August 14, 2009

By Sammy Batten

Radar blip becomes solid catch for ECU

By Sammy Batten
All rights reserved.

Marlboro County (SC) coach Dean Boyd believes Lee Pegues has been flying below the so-called recruiting radar.

And Boyd can't believe it.

“He's been a three-year starter and all region for three years in the toughest area in the state in 3-A,'' Boyd said. “He doesn't come off the field for us, and at 275 pounds he has real good speed. He's just a great football player and an even better person.

“But with all that, he really has been a little underrated by the big schools.''

Only Duke and East Carolina among major-college programs had offered Pegues scholarships by the end of July along with Georgia Southern and South Carolina State. ECU's swift and effective courtship won out last week when Pegues gave a verbal commitment to the Pirates.

Boyd initiated the recruiting process with ECU and other schools in April by sending out highlight videos of a junior season in which Pegues collected 112 tackles, 20 tackles for losses and 10 sacks for a team that reached the lower state semifinals. It wasn't until May when the Pirates responded with an invitation for Pegues to make an unofficial visit to Greenville and check out what the school had to offer.

Needing an escort for the occasion, Boyd turned to one of his volunteer assistant coaches — former East Carolina wide receiver and Marlboro County legend, Mitchell Galloway.

“Mitchell took him up there and Lee just fell in love with it,'' Boyd said. “The coaches treated him really well. They offered (scholarship) when he was up there.''

Pegues did receive a surprise during the visit.

After returning to campus from a buffet lunch, Pegues was asked to participate in a workout.

“He didn't know he was going to be working out,'' Boyd said. “He had to grab some old shorts and a T-shirt he had laying in the trunk of his car, and work out for them on a full stomach. But he ended up doing well, even with all that.''

Pegues has played with the Marlboro varsity for most of the last four seasons. Boyd said Pegues has made himself a college prospect with hard work on the field and in the weight room. Peagues is one of Marlboro County's strongest players.

“He can bench about 400 pounds, he's a 500 or 600-pound squatter and he power-cleans 300,'' Boyd said. “He really has dedicated himself to weight lifting. He finished second in the Armed Forces Classic (weight lifting event) in his age division. So he's a strong, fast young man.''

Perhaps another reason Pegues has flown under the recruiting radar is because he shares the defensive limelight at Marlboro County with another top-notch lineman in N.C. State recruit Thomas Teal. Teal is a massive 6-2, 330-pounder who was also offered by ECU.

Pegues is expected to continue playing defensive end in college.

“He's never going to be a 300-pound guy,'' Boyd said. “He'll probably get to about 275, so you're looking at him playing a defensive end.

“He's a really good pass rusher. We had a bunch of sacks last year between Lee and Teal. Both those guys play 120 snaps a game. They never come off the field and give us a great effort from the first snap to the last snap. I think that says a lot about a young man of that age and size to play that many snaps in a game. It shows he has endurance.''

Pegues is the first defensive lineman to join ECU's recruiting Class of 2010, but he's the second player from South Carolina. He joins Mauldin offensive lineman Taylor Hudson, who committed on July 27.

E-mail Sammy Batten.

Sammy Batten's Archives

08/14/2009 04:31:49 AM


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