by Lee Brecheen
|Cliff Van Meter – photo by by David Silverman, dspics.com.|
March 5, 2010 – It’s not that often you hear of a football player sign with Yale in the Ivy League that’s from Louisiana, but in the case of RB Cliff Van Meter from Jesuit High School of New Orleans, and QB Dez Duron Evangel Christian High School that is the case. Yale has had football players before from Louisiana; it’s just not that common. The academic requirements are a lot tougher to get in when it comes to your ACT and GPA compared to the majority of the schools in the United States. Yale is located in New Haven, Connecticut and has to play the Brown’s, the Harvard’s, the Princeton’s, and the Dartmouth’s every year. It’s actually a very talented and very competitive league.
Yale, like all Ivy League teams, has a J.V team that plays other J.V. teams. These are players that are usually young freshman, that are not playing varsity for that year. QB Dez Duron (5-11, 180), played J.V. as a freshman and will be returning for his sophomore year in football. Even though Dez did not play varsity in 2009 he will be listed as a sophomore. Dez’s dad, Denny, played QB for Louisiana Tech in 1973 and in the NFL, but left the NFL at an early age and later helped start Evangel Christian High School. Dez was the Louisiana 2008 Gatorade player of the year, throwing for a Louisiana record 58 touchdowns in one season, and 8 touchdowns in one game. Dez will have to wait his turn at Yale where he backs up three more experienced and seasoned QB’s. Nebraska transfer Patrick Witt (6-4, 225), who will be a junior has a possible NFL future, threw for 1,449 yards 8 touchdowns in 2009, and Brook Hart (6-5, 225) junior threw for a school record,62.1 completion rate for 919 yards and 7 touchdowns. That’s a great one – two punch at QB. Yale also returns Bryan Farris (6-3. 215), who will be a junior. Dez could possibly have to wait two more years before the job is his. Yale has probably the most talent and depth of any Ivy League school for QB’s.
|Dez Duron – photo by Sam Rubin ’95, Yale Sports Publicity|
Running Back Cliff Van Meter (6-3, 215), was a freshman in 2009. He was signed out of Jesuit high school out of New Orleans where his dad played football at Tulane. Cliff Van Meter and his Grandfather played football for Tulane. Cliff is a good looking kid, that’s always been tall since his early days in high school. He has battled some injuries, but at 6-3, 215, he has a ton of potential to play a lot one day. Cliff, like Dez, will have to wait his turn in the Running Back rotation (because the team is deep at the position) unless there are injuries for him to get on the field. Cliff could easily weigh in the 225 range, and could end up switching to another position.
Both of these kids will look to start in two years if they continue to progress and get better. So in 2012 remember these names. Again if there are injuries it might come sooner. Remember this is a school where there’s hardly any attrition for football with players leaving.
Yale went 4-6 as a team in 2009, but look for that to improve in 2010 with the lot of talent coming back. Look for QB Witt to be in the NFL one day possible.