Brookline (Mass.) Dexter School was an unknown program in the recruiting world until this recruiting year, when four-star linebacker Abner Logan jumped onto the scene. Now the program has a new player to keep an eye on, as sophomore offensive lineman James Hendren is quickly becoming a name to remember.
"Thing are moving along well," said Hendren, who is 6-foot-7 and 282-pounds. "I'm just working out and getting ready for combines this spring and also for camps this summer at places that have contacted my coach."
While only a sophomore, Hendren is planning to hit the combine circuit hard in order to prove his place as a top recruit.
"I'd like to prove, among other things, that the Boston area, and Massachusetts and New England in general, can deliver star football players," said Hendren. "I mean we're not any smaller than some of the guys in Texas, Florida, California, Ohio and the other big time football areas, and I think a lot of the success coming from there is because of the amplitude of FBS schools in those areas. We have BC and we'll have UMass next year, but I think the amount there, or lack-there-of here, has hurt our reputation."
With this reputation, Hendren still knows its possible to make it to the highest level of college football while coming from his area.
"I'm looking to be one of those guys, along with Abner Logan, Armani Reeves, Camren Williams, Eric Olson and Canaan Severin to change that mindset," said Hendren.
After the combine season, Hendren also plans to attend several summer camps. At this time it seems as though he will have plenty of options.
"All of the schools that I want to be able to consider that I want to know about me and recruit me, have been doing so which is a really a good thing for me," said Hendren. "Among those places are Stanford, Michigan, Wisconsin, Virginia, Northwestern, Duke and Boston College. Those are the places that I would really want to attend because of the incredible mixes of academics and football at each place."
Hendren already has one camp solidified and will consider several more.
"I know that I'm going to the BC camp again this year, and Northwestern wants me to come out there," said Hendren. "Virginia mentioned something to my coach about wanting to see me down there this summer. I think all of that is pretty solid for me at this point."
Despite only finishing 4-4, Hendren was happy with how his sophomore season progressed.
"I moved over to right tackle, which was new because last year I started at left tackle," said Hendren. "I think because of the lefty quarterback they wanted a little quicker guy playing right tackle to go against the speed rushers, and my basketball background helped with that a lot I think."
Hendren also realizes that he still has plenty of work left in order to fine tune his game.
"Well I'm always looking to improve my game, and my athleticism is a big part of my game," said Hendren. "I like to be able to get guys out in space and I pride myself on my pulling ability, but the thing I want to work on most is getting bigger in my lower body, which is pretty strong but just a little thin. Besides adding to that strength, I want to be able to do things with my core to bridge the upper body and lower body strengths, which should also do well to prevent any injuries there."