As it can be for many prospects, the recruiting process proved tough for Jared Coker. The Briar Woods offensive lineman had interest from a handful of Division I football programs, making it hard for the rising senior to tell any one school “No.”

But following an unofficial visit to Bowling Green this past weekend, it became much easier for Coker to say “yes” to Bowling Green Coach Dave Clawson, who reeled in a verbal commitment from the talented lineman.

“The more I looked into it academically and athletically, it was such a perfect fit,” Coker said in a Tuesday phone interview. “There were so many schools that I liked and I felt bad for the others, but Bowling Green had everything I wanted and fought hard to get me.”

Coker also had offers from Bucknell, Hampton, Kent State, Old Dominion, U-Mass., UNC-Charlotte and VMI. The offer from Bowling Green came in February following a junior day visit to the Ohio-based campus.

In the 6-foot-4, 285-pounder, Bowling Green gains a physical lineman who excels on pull plays and has been lauded for his aggressive style.

“They need a pulling guy who can build up in the hole and that’s one thing I said I can definitely do,” Coker said. “They also want an overall good person who doesn’t get in trouble and they felt I fit all of those three things.”

Coker has been a key cog for Briar Woods during its recent run of success, opening holes that helped yield 3,190 rushing yards and a third straight Virginia AA Division 4 championship this past fall.

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