Army commit Cedrik Bell lives approximately 30 minutes from the Ball State campus, which provided the safety prospect with an opportunity to see his future teammates up close and personal for the very first time.
"Yes, I made the Army - Ball State game on Saturday says the hard hitting 6-foot-0, 185 pounder.
"I arrived at little after noon. I talked to some of the cadets and I talked to one of my friends who's a plebe at West Point, Kendal Frederick. You guys might have done a story on him last year ... he runs track."
The crossing of the paths of these two Indiana natives occurred during Bell's junior year of high school. "He (Frederick) went to Fort Wayne Snyder and we run our track regionals in Fort Wayne," Bell divulges. "We met last year when he saw my West Point hoodie and he knew what it was about."
Bell shared with GoBlackKnights.com that his conversation with Frederick only confirmed that West Point is not only where he wants to be, but needs to be and playing for the Black Knights is icing on the cake.
I'm still really excited about Army," Bell reaffirms. "Black & Gold is the only color I want to wear.
- Army commit & safety, Cedrick Bell
"He talked to me about what it was like to be a plebe ... about basic training, the classes, the class sizes and how some professors are willing to assist you after class," shares Bell, who also heard that there are no gimmees at the academy. "But you have some teachers that are nice then you have others who can be tough.
"He basically telling about the do's and don'ts."
Although the game did not pan out as the Army staff had hoped for, there was still enough time for Bell to connect with his Coach Joe Ross, who has handled Bell's recruiting, along cornerback coach, Tony Coaxum.
"I spoke to Coach Ross and Coach Coaxum," he adds. "Coach Ross and I talked for awhile. We talked about my offer and I just reaffirmed my verbal commit to play at Army. He also told me it was up to me to do a big signing day ceremony or not.
Ready to be a Black Knight
Bell took advantage of his game day viewing by assessing what his competition could be like next year, as he arrives on the West Point campus as a direct admit.
"He (Ross) said that if I work hard, make sure I train in the off season and stay healthy, then I could come in and compete for playing time," says Bell.
Bell did admit that he was surprised by the Black Knights' showing against Ball State. "I was surprised because they played a very tough Northwestern team," he states. "I thought they were going to come in and handle business. I don't know .... they got a couple of calls, a couple of penalties that really stopped their 'Mo' and that really killed Army. But also Ball State just came out firing and they were at home, came out firing on all cylinders, they looked impossible to stop."
"With defense that Army ran, I think I can do well in it. It looked like the DB's were out of place a little and once the game started, their starting safety go hurt. The safety is like the quarterback of the DBs' and I know that had to mess up all the calling, timing and plays like that. I know that if probably had stayed in they would have done a lot better."
"I'm still really excited about Army," Bell reaffirms. "Black & Gold is the only color I want to wear."
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