Following the 2022 Imperial Valley soccer season, the Central Union Excessive College Spartans soccer crew has signed two senior soccer gamers to the NCAA Nationwide Letters of Intent to full faculty scholarships to play Division I soccer.
The 2 gamers are Charlie Sullivan, who will attend California Polytechnic State College San Luis Obispo (Cal Poly Gradual), and Skylar Cook dinner, who will attend the College of New Mexico (UNM) in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
That Cook dinner and Sullivan have such high-profile scholarship will not be misplaced on Central’s coach David Pena, who summed up the duo within the easiest but most poignant assertion.
“They’re leaders on the sphere. They’re dedicated to being the perfect they are often on and off the sphere,” mentioned Pena. “They’re merely, in the perfect sense of the phrase, student-athletes.”
Pena credit his gamers’ success with additionally competing to be their greatest, whether or not they’re coaching or taking part in three sports activities, and carrying that angle into the classroom and recruiting course of.
Cook dinner and Sullivan each signed their nationwide letters final month in the course of the NCAA’s approval of the early signing interval, which ran from December 21-23 in 2022.
SKYLAR COOK – UNM LOBOS
Cook dinner’s stellar three-sport profession at Central Union Excessive included being chosen to a three-time first-team All-Imperial Valley League and a second-team All-San Diego SAFE.
As well as, Cook dinner additionally earned First Workforce All IVL honors in baseball and was named Defensive Quarterback of the Yr in soccer and twice in basketball. He additionally added the San Diego Federal Credit score Union (CIF SDS) Sportsperson of the Yr to his resume.
In his three seasons as a defensive again on the Spartan soccer crew, Cook dinner collected 120 tackles, together with 81 solo, and 9 interceptions whereas additionally taking part in offense as a large receiver.
“After my freshman 12 months, I made the change to taking part in protection primarily and located that I favored it at security,” Cook dinner mentioned. “I discovered I might moderately try this than take successful. Particularly my senior 12 months I needed to deal with protection, and New Mexico’s defensive coaches respect that I can catch the ball as a substitute of dropping it.”
One in every of simply three of 11 preliminary Lobos signings slated to play on the defensive facet of the ball, Cook dinner will rating this fall as New Mexico introduced his signing on Twitter (@UNMLoboFB), letting everybody know Cook dinner is able to play, tweeting, “…I carry you A highschool senior with the protection of a school freshman. We simply did it!!! Welcome to the Lobo Skylar Cook dinner household!!! Lobo followers will love seeing the_skylarcook fly round College Stadium!!!”
“I am certain the defenders and coaches got here to look at me play,” Cook dinner mentioned. “I believe they have been confirming that my body was actually collegiate and that I used to be bodily mature.”
Whereas taking part in collegiate soccer was a prime precedence for Cook dinner, he was drawn to New Mexico due to what his scholarship expertise may finally earn him.
“Each Fresno State and the College of San Diego (College of San Diego) have been desirous about me, however crucial factor to me was my training, and New Mexico has a nationally acknowledged enterprise program,” Cook dinner mentioned.
The campus go to additionally made an impression on Cook dinner.
“Albuquerque is a really spread-out metropolis, extra densely populated than El Centro, nevertheless it has a small-town really feel, the elevation is larger and it is a bit cooler and cooler proper now,” Cook dinner mentioned. “I liked the campus…the openness, the structure, and the athletic services have been nice.”
Not surprisingly, Cook dinner, who grew up in a close-knit household, was additionally drawn to New Mexico due to the curiosity they confirmed in it as a soccer participant and as a person.
“Their curiosity was very sturdy they usually definitely made a relentless effort to fulfill me and my household,” Cook dinner mentioned. “They make many visits to the valley and never solely to look at me play soccer, but in addition to see what sort of particular person I’m and about my household.”
What they discovered was sturdy household help for Cook dinner, led by his mom, Don McKinney, and his brothers, Randy and Brandon Andrews, who’re ex-Spartans. Brandon Cook dinner additionally performs on scholarship to South Dakota State College.
“Completely my mother, it is the closest relationship I’ve ever had,” Cook dinner mentioned. “My siblings are a giant a part of my life as mentors and position fashions, they by no means let me win something once I was younger, they made me work for the whole lot,” mentioned the brand new UNM Lobo.
When requested if he had any feedback he needed so as to add to the IVP interview, Cook dinner was fast to reply.
“I needed to say that none of this might have occurred with out the assistance of The Man Upstairs who has blessed me with all of the folks round me.”
Charlie Sullivan – Cal Mustang Bully Gradual
A quarterback who enjoys three different sports activities, Sullivan is constant his spectacular basketball profession by taking part in his third 12 months of basketball earlier than becoming a member of the observe crew this spring to defend his Imperial Valley League championship titles within the 200 and 400 meters.
“I like to play many sports activities,” Sullivan mentioned, “however I will play the sports activities I like most at Cal Poly.”
Soccer can be the game that earned Sullivan probably the most native recognition, as Sullivan rushed for 1,347 yards and 19 touchdowns throughout his just-completed senior season. Sullivan’s highschool soccer totals embrace speeding for two,158 yards and 33 touchdowns, and 32 receptions for an additional seven touchdowns for the Spartans.
Sullivan dominated IVL opponents in 2022, scoring 4 touchdowns towards Imperial and Southwestern, whereas scoring three touchdowns towards Brawley within the CIF SDS D-II playoffs and two touchdowns, together with the game-winning rating, within the notorious Peel Sport.
As spectacular as these stats sound, it was Sullivan’s stats on protection that earned him the total scholarship that was of significance to the Cal Poly SLO, whose coach Paul Wolfe launched Sullivan as an upcoming linebacker.
“Charlie performed linebacker and fullback in highschool. We had him at summer season camp final 12 months and are very impressed together with his beginning potential and velocity as an athlete,” Wolf mentioned through a Cal Poly SLO press launch on the day of the signing. Charlie will carry a superb quantity of velocity and health to the linebacker line.”
On protection, Sullivan totaled 57 tackles, together with 33 solo, in addition to 2.5 sacks, 4 quarterback hurries, two fumble recoveries, and a compelled fumble within the 2022 season.
“Personally, with soccer, I do not care which facet I used to be on,” mentioned Sullivan, who was named to the All Imperial Valley League first crew on offense and protection.
“Cale Poly mentioned they needed me to play protection and I believe they see one thing extra in my skills defensively than offensively,” mentioned the long run Mustangs linebacker.
To that finish, because the 6-foot-2, 195-pound Sullivan continues to vie for the middle discipline place this spring, Cal Poly SLO Mustangs have already had him begin a coaching routine to extend his power.
“They did not say something about whether or not I’d proceed to work at my speeds,” mentioned Sullivan, who has been weight coaching at Central for 4 years, “however they did ship me their exercise plan and it is very totally different from what I used to be doing.”
Sullivan labored exhausting to get his discipline scholarship gives from College of California Davis, Idaho State, Colgate, Air Power Academy and College of San Diego earlier than selecting Cal Poly SLO.
“I met a few of their coaches at a present on the College of Redlands and went to one in every of their summer season soccer camps,” Sullivan mentioned. “They knew I used to be there at camp speaking to extra coaches and getting a really feel for campus.”
The standard of the varsity, which ranks first within the California State College system, and the campus have been each components within the Sullivan College’s resolution.
“I fell in love with the atmosphere and the realm…once I was there I took a tour to see an summary of the campus and it is spectacular,” mentioned Sullivan.
Born in Virginia, Sullivan got here to El Centro within the third grade when his father, Michael Sr., transferred to Charlie together with his older brother, Michael Jr., and mom, Nellie, as a part of his task as an USCIS officer.
Moreover studying a terrific sports activities work ethic from his household (Michael Jr., was a three-sport athlete at Central) and a love of basketball (Nellie Sullivan is the Southwest women’ basketball coach), Charlie additionally realized the worth of getting a stable training, which helped in his quest for a profession. on a scholarship.
Charlie Sullivan mentioned, “I’ve all the time realized that sports activities have been a stepping stone to training… Success within the classroom all the time comes first.” “In truth, I’ve realized to do my greatest it doesn’t matter what I do,” he mentioned.