Big LDS Texan Michael Yeck was on hand to give the opening prayer at a recent fireside held in Texas…
Yeck Joins the Fold
"BYU has everything I want," said Michael Yeck. "It's just the feeling I got when I was there and whenever I talk to coaches. BYU feels right and is the place where I feel I can grow the most both athletically, but most importantly, spiritually." Having received offers from Kansas State, Utah, Kansas, Arizona and New Mexico, Yeck made his decision to commit to BYU on Sunday. He called offensive line coach Bruce Weber and wide receivers coach Patrick Higgins to inform them of his decision. Soon thereafter, head coach Bronco Mendenhall called Yeck to congratulate him on his decision. "Coach Mendenhall just congratulated me and let me know how happy and excited they were to have me as part of the program," said Yeck. "He let me know that it was the biggest decision of my life up to that point and that he understood that." True to form, Coach Mendenhall also informed the prep star that this was only the beginning. Mendenhall spoke to Yeck about the work and dedication required of him to reach his goals and to be worthy of the scholarship he just accepted. "Coach Mendenhall doesn't hide anything," said Yeck. "He reminded me of the work and dedication that being a student and football player at BYU takes, which I like. I know that BYU is the place where I can grow the most in every aspect of my life, doing the things Coach Mendenhall talked to me about." Yeck said his final top three schools were Utah, Kansas State and of course BYU. Deciding on BYU very much hinged on the aspects BYU offered other than football. "I liked both Kansas State and Utah a lot, but they don't have what BYU has," said Yeck. "I'm LDS and even though Utah has a good LDS atmosphere, it just isn't the same. Being at Utah doesn't give you the same feeling as being at BYU. I want to grow as much spiritually as I can in college and BYU is without question the best place I can do that. I know that I can maximize my potential at BYU." Of course, Yeck didn't sign with BYU only to bask in the spirit therein. He signed with BYU to play football, and to grow athletically and help the football program reach new heights. "BYU finished last season as the 15th-best team in the nation, so football-wise they're obviously one of the top programs in the nation," said Yeck. "They produce some very good offensive linemen, which was something I liked a lot. BYU had the best combination of a great football program and great environment of all the other schools that recruited me." Growing up in suburban Dallas, Texas, Yeck wasn't all that familiar with BYU growing up. Soon after visiting the school during Junior Day, he came away with a very good feeling that was enhanced by attending the spring football game. "LaVell Edwards stadium was awesome," said Yeck. "Although there was a lot of people there I just imagined how incredible it would be with 64,000 people there cheering. I can't wait to be part of that." Yeck turns 19 the September following his graduation and currently plans to leave on his mission right after high school. "If I leave right after high school I'll be able to come home and have all my eligibility left when I get back," said Yeck. "Having four or five straight years to play and concentrate on football and school is something I like." When he gets back, coaches will immediately work on developing Yeck's superior 6-foot-8-inch frame, adding increased strength and developed technique to go along with his current abilities. Yeck recognizes that he has a superior advantage over his opponents and will work to develop that during his last year in high school and on to when he suits up for BYU. "I'm bigger than everyone I go up against," said Yeck. "My long arms and height allow me to do things that others can't. I'm able to keep opposing players away from me easier than I would if I weren't so tall, obviously." So it's on to BYU as Yeck committed to sign his letter of intent with BYU this coming February. When it came down to it, Yeck said BYU just had the best feeling of all the schools, which in and of itself made the decision easier for him. "It really is that simple," said Yeck. "BYU felt right. I felt so strongly that BYU was the best place for me, so yeah, it was the feeling I got when I was at BYU and when thinking about BYU above all else that led me to commit to them. I couldn't be more happy about my decision."
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