When word spread Monday that Spain Park (Ala.) offensive lineman Ben Tamburello had committed to Samford -- a Football Championship Subdivision program -- over a handful of major colleges, some were surprised.
But for Tamburello, the decision made perfect sense.
"None of the other schools really compared with what Samford had to offer," Tamburello said. "Tulane filled up, so that wasn't an option any more. None of the other schools were really what I was looking for. I just liked everything about it. The facilities they have there and the facilities at non-BCS schools are not a whole lot different."
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The 6-feet-3, 275-pound center, son of the former Auburn All-American with the same name, had double-digit offers. Arkansas State, Southern Miss, Troy and UAB were among those that had pulled the trigger.
At Samford, though, Tamburello felt most comfortable. And badly wanted.
"For me, I'm not the biggest prospect out there … for me to get that kind of treatment was different," Tamburello said. "It was something really cool to go somewhere I'm really wanted, not just somewhere where I'm just a number."
Samford is located only 25 minutes from his home, which also made the school appealing.
"It's a nice thing," Tamburello said. "Especially for me since I want to stay in Birmingham the rest of my life."
According to Tamburello, his father approved of the decision.
"He was pumping Samford the whole time," Tamburello said. "He just loved it. He loves coach [Pat] Sullivan."