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Druley: Bishop, Thielk choose Minnesota schools

Published: Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014 5:30 a.m. CST • Updated: Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014 11:05 a.m. CST

Brandon Bishop and his father, Willie, included extensive athletic and academic accomplishments as part of Bishop’s recent football recruiting video, prepared via Hudl.

Given Bishop’s verbal commitment Saturday to NCAA Division II Minnesota-Duluth, here’s a brief narration from the Kaneland senior for the director’s cut:

“Get your name out there and take a chance on any school and it might surprise you with the outcome,” Bishop said. “And don’t limit yourself, really, with anything.”

Bishop happily learned that lesson from Bulldogs brass, who admitted they don’t usually recruit Illinoisans during Bishop’s recent campus visit. The school hasn’t had the best luck luring recruits from far out of state, and its most recent Illinois product didn’t stay long.

The Bishops eliminated any potential trepidation by marketing Brandon, a wide receiver, straight to Minnesota-Duluth, which contacted Bishop on Dec. 21, the same day he sent the video. The school offered a scholarship at the end of Bishop’s visit this past weekend.

“It was kind of like fate because they had been recruiting kids since junior year and then they just heard about me and call me in,” Bishop said.

Bishop, also a track athlete at Kaneland, will return to the Knights lineup this spring and could expand on his usual repertoire of sprints.

He’s happy to be back in full health after suffering a concussion – along with a strained neck and back – near the end of the Knights’ first-round Class 5A playoff victory against Hampshire in November.

Bishop sat out Kaneland’s Round 2 loss at Joliet Catholic.

“I’m 100 precent and I’m ready to go out and play football,” Bishop said.

Play those words over some video, too.

Thielk to Minnesota State: In other football recruiting news, Batavia senior middle linebacker Anthony Thielk verbally committed to Division II Minnesota State this past weekend.

Thielk led Class 6A state champion Batavia with 107 tackles, including 14 for a loss. His standout season also included 8˝ sacks, two fumble recoveries and three interceptions. Thielk picked off passes in the state semifinals and the state championship game.

Minnesota State is also among the schools all-state Batavia senior running back Anthony Scaccia is considering, along with Butler, Drake and Wisconsin-Whitewater.

• Kevin Druley is a sportswriter for the Kane County Chronicle. He can be reached at 630-845-5347 or kdruley@shawmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at @kevindruley.

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