By Robbie Loeb
Chad Kanoff ’13 verbally committed to Vanderbilt on Monday, positioning himself between the crosshairs of the 300-pound SEC defenders that notoriously punish opposing quarterbacks.
“I’m ready to beat 300-pound linemen from LSU,” the 6-foot-4 200-pound Kanoff said. “It means a lot [to go to the SEC]. It’s the best conference in the nation, undoubtedly, and I think it would be really cool. Every week you get to go to the meccas of college football.”
The Commodores, from Nashville, Tenn., went 2-6 in the SEC last season under first-year Head Coach James Franklin. The Commodores’ starting quarterback Jordan Rodgers, brother of Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, will graduate after the 2013 season.
Kanoff has been linked to Vanderbilt since the Commodore coaches were first made him an offer in early February.
“They like my size, but also that I can turn a negative play into a positive play,” Kanoff said. “It’s a good fit for me, athletically, academically and socially. It’s got good academics, it’s got a good football team and it’s in a cool place in Nashville.”
Kanoff said he needed to decide on a school as early as possible so his position would not be filled.
“With quarterback recruiting now, you kind of have to, otherwise you’ll be left out,” he said. “Most places only take one and maybe two quarterbacks, but once they have their guys, they’re done.”
Vanderbilt already has another quarterback from the class of 2013 that verbally committed, Johnathan McCrary of Cedar Grove High School in Ellenwood, Ga. On ESPN, McCrary is ranked 16th among dual threat quarterbacks while Kanoff sits in the ninth spot.
Kanoff may decide to graduate from high school a semester early next year to attend the Commodores’ spring training, but said the Vanderbilt coaches would leave that decision entirely up to him.
“They don’t pressure me either way,” he said. “If I wanted to, then they’d be happy to take me, but if I don’t, they’re fine.”
Kanoff received other offers from San Diego State and Yale, and drew interest from Colorado, Duke, Oklahoma State, Rutgers and Washington.
“Now I can just get ready for my senior season and not have to worry about who’s coming in and all of that,” Kanoff said.
While he is only a verbal commitment and cannot sign a letter of intent until February, he said he would not go back on his decision.
“I’m 100 percent committed,” he said. “I’m not going to waiver on that.”