Bilal Wide Open

Bilal Wide Open

Indianapolis (Ind.) Ben Davis four-star junior linebacker Asmar Bilal is nowhere near a commitment or narrowing of his list, but he is quickly adding weight and strength to his frame.

Ben Davis head coach Mike Kirschner has seen some very good football players come through his program and many of them are playing at the college level right now. So when he says the package of skills junior linebacker Asmar Bilal brings to the table is rare, it means something.

Bilal is one of hotter prospects in the Midwest of late, seeing his offer list expand seemingly weekly. After the addition of Michigan State today, he now stands at a dozen, and given his talent level, the addition of more would not be a surprise.

"One thing is his overall speed," Kirschner says. "He's very fast. The other one is his size. He's 6-foot-3 and pushing 210 pounds now, real long arms, so he's got size, he's got length, he can cover a lot of ground. And the other thing he was able to do and show on film is cover people in space. We would lock him up on receivers in the slot and he would have no problem, so it makes him more versatile as a linebacker, not just a bigger, stronger kid who can plug holes but he can cover people in space."

One of the knocks on Bilal was his weight. He was in the 190-range at this time last season, but through dedication and discipline, he has been building himself into a college-ready linebacker physically.

"He's had an unbelievable offseason. Our last max-out, which was a few weeks ago, he benched 330, he squatted 400 and he cleaned 290. He has not missed a workout all winter. He really hits it every day as hard as he can, stays after, does extras, everything you want big time kids to do."

Seemingly the total package on the field, what Bilal brings in the classroom and off the field makes him a dream recruit for colleges.

"He's a 4.0 kid on a 4.0 scale, honor student, National Honor Society, teachers love him. He's in calculus and his teachers just rave about what kind of kid he is, how he does things the right way and all that."

With his recruitment exploding, Kirschner recently sat down with Bilal and his parents to discuss the process. While many top recruits grow up rooting for particular schools or particular players and may even be partial to things like colors, name brands and mascots, Bilal, as usual, breaks the mold.

"This is the odd part. He is quite open. He's wide open. The parents really didn't put a limit on him [location wise]. The funny thing is, as much as he loves football, he doesn't watch college football, so some of these schools, if the school doesn't have the state name in it, he doesn't know where they're at, so he doesn't have any preconceived notion."

Bilal has visited some schools, Indiana, Cincinnati, Michigan, who has yet to offer, and Kirschner says he is likely to see other programs like Northwestern over spring break.

Without the usual attachment to any school that often accompanies the recruitment of big-time players, academics will be the primary focus in the ultimate decision.

"When I talked to him and his parents, the first thing was major. Do they have something he wants to study. Also, are you looking to go in and play as a freshman? If that's the case, places like Michigan State are tough. I know we just had Isaiah Lewis, who played as a freshman, but Michigan State's stepped themselves up pretty high and Wisconsin's tough, but you can go to some lower level D1, a team that's struggling and you can go play."

That, however, is not an option for Bilal.

"When it's all said and done, he said he wants to be at a place where they play good football, not hoping to play good football. That comes down to places like Virginia Tech, Michigan State, Wisconsin and Northwestern, because they're all pretty good."

Currently Bilal is a four-star prospect on Scout.com, a member of the Scout 300 and one of the top three prospects in the state of Indiana.

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