Jacksonville (Ill.) tight end Dalton Keene talks Iowa junior day and possible upcoming trips…
Keene Can Do it All
To say Dalton Keene is a key player for Jacksonville High would be an understatement considering the variety of roles the 6'4, 255-lb junior plays. "I play three ways," he said. "I play tight end or wide receiver, and I'm getting to point where I'll start playing fullback. I play SAM backer, outside linebacker, and I'm our extra point kicker, punter and I'm the wedge guy on kickoffs." Colleges have noticed Keene's versatility at that size and there have been many schools sending mail his way. "Actually, I went up to Northwestern last weekend to watch their game against Michigan. They invited me up there. I've gotten mail from them. I got a couple letters from Alabama, Tennessee, Oregon, Texas A&M, Cincinnati, Minnesota, Harvard, UCLA and a couple others, Michigan State." Two weeks ago, Keene took in his first college game as a recruit on a trip to Bloomington, and he says the intensity from the coaches was something he noticed. "I went up to Indiana week before I went to Northwestern. It was a great facility and everything. They get down to it. They don't take any BS from anybody. I'm ok with that. Down here, it's a little different, they're a little more understanding, but that just comes with getting older. I like the school and everything. I didn't get to see campus, just saw the area for football. It was a fun experience." The next week, Keene saw a night time experience in Evanston. "It was pretty much the same except I had a little more fun. The fans got a little more into it, plus they were playing big people from Michigan. I think it was their first conference game up there, but I'm not sure. Everybody was there. People were standing in aisles and everything. It was a great atmosphere to play in if I could. I was just excited." Keene does not have any offers at this time, but that should change if he continues his strong play in all three phases of the game. Of course, he's not likely to pull triple duty in college, but he says he does not have a preference. "I probably will play wherever they need me to play if I can help the team in any way. That's what I like to do, help the team win. I've played tight end, wide receiver for three years straight, I guess you could say where I'm most comfortable at, is catching the football. I didn't play D until my sophomore year. It's getting to the point where I'm comfortable at it. There's still stuff I learn every day, day in and day out." Keene also plays varsity basketball. Currently on the year, he has 41 receptions for 639 yards and six touchdowns. He has 28 tackles, one sack and one forced fumble on defense.
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