2006-01-27 / Sports

Shrine Bowler commits to Mountaineers

By LARRY HILLIARD Ledger Sports Editor larry@gaffneyledger.com

Gaffney’s Brett Irvin will be playing for another championship team next season.

Irvin, who was instrumental in the Indians’ run to the Big 16 championship this year, has given a non-binding commitment to the Appalachian State Mountaineers, which captured the NCAA Division I-AA championship.

He’ll make his verbal commitment binding on the national signing day on Wednesday, according to his father, Gaffney assistant coach Larry Irvin.

“They talked real positively to him,” Irvin said. “It’s a good opportunity for Brett.”

Irvin, who was selected to play in the Shrine another Bowl, also had offers from Gardner-Webb and Presbyterian. North Carolina also expressed an interest in him as a walk-on.

But Irvin said an official visit to Boone, N.C., was all it took to convince his son that Appalachian State was the perfect fit.

“It was a good visit and he really liked it,” Irvin said. “They offered Irvin said. “They offered the scholarship then. They also came by the school this week to talk to him.”

Irvin said his son was also impressed that Appalachian State head coach Jerry Moore telephoned him from Hawaii, where he was serving as an assistant coach at the Hula Bowl.

The Mountaineers’ starting center is back next season, so Irvin will likely sit and learn as a freshman.

“They said it will probably take a year to pick up the system,” Irvin said.

Although Appalachian State competes in Division I-AA, they don’t shy away from the top flight programs. Appalachian State has played LSU and has scheduled Georgia.

Gaffney’s other Shrine Bowler, Julius Wilkerson, took his official visit to Clemson last weekend. He gave the Tigers a verbal commitment last summer.

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