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Jesuit star Frey commits to UNR
Signs letter at grandparents' Olivehurst home
In the end, Isaiah Frey proved to be his own man just as his father had hoped he would.
Frey opted to play football for the University of Nevada, Reno, signing a letter of intent Wednesday, flush with family and confidence at a small ceremony held at his grandparents' house in Olivehurst.
"I liked the coaches and I liked the players," said Frey, who is one of 22 recruits inked by the Wolf Pack on Wednesday.
The 5-foot-11, 190-pound Frey, who ran a 4.43 40-yard dash at a recent camp, is projected as a cornerback despite 1,100 rushing yards and 1,700 all-purpose yards for Jesuit High this past fall.
"I actually prefer to play defense," Frey said.
Eighteen of Nevada's recruits are high school signees, and 16 of them are from California. Of the four junior college players, Yuba College's outstanding defensive back Dayton Guillory, also was signed.
In fact, Nevada concentrated on defense with this year's incoming class.
Recruiting coordinator Jim Mastro signed 13 defensive players, six of whom are in the secondary.
But Frey said the Nevada coaches guaranteed him a shot at competing for a starting job at cornerback, and that was a big part of his decision. Other schools were looking to redshirt him.
Frey said he made his decision late Tuesday night after spending 2 1⁄2 hours on the phone with Nevada and Washington State coaches in their final pitch to recruit him.
"It's a relief, but it is another step in my life and I am excited about it," said Frey, who was contacted by more than 40 Division I schools, of which nine he considered serious. In that group were Arizona, Arizona State and Oregon.
His father, Demetryst Cornish — a standout who set rushing records at Lindurst High and went on to play at Arizona before transferring back to Sacramento State — had hoped his son would opt for a Pac-10 team.
But Cornish had sent his son to play at Jesuit rather than stay at home and play for his alma mater because he wanted Frey to face adversity and learn to cope with different situations on his own.
Frey, who wanted to stay at home where he grew up playing youth football, admits attending the Catholic all-boys school in suburban Sacramento took some getting used to.
"Actually I hated it," Frey said. "But as the months rolled on, I learned to like it, and now I would not change a thing."
Frey is a two-time MVP for the Marauders, only the second player to accomplish that feat. His list of honors would almost fill the box the family used to hold all the recruitment letters.
Frey said he plans to visit Nevada during spring drills and enroll at the university this summer so he can immerse himself in its program.
"I think a lot of good things are about to happen at Nevada," Frey said.