Norwin lineman Giansante commits to Western Kentucky

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Monday, June 29, 2020 | 5:59 PM


With each video clip he posted on social media, bulked-up Anthony Giansante shared another step on his path to Division I football.

Whether he was lifting weights, jumping rope, or improving footwork and hand technique, he let people follow along, including college coaches who could not meet him in person due to NCAA rules altered by the coronavirus pandemic.

The grind is real, and so are the results.

Despite the new-look recruiting landscape, Giansante, an incoming senior lineman at Norwin, pulled in 10 Division I offers.

On Monday, he picked his favorite one.

Western Kentucky will be the college destination for the 6-foot-4, 290-pound lineman, who was recruited as an offensive guard.

The Hilltoppers were the only Football Bowl Subdivision program to offer him a scholarship.

Giansante knows his videos were watched. The NCAA “dead period,” where coaches cannot have contact with recruits, was stretched to Aug. 31, meaning prospects had to get creative to get on the radar of coaches.

The times of in-person showcases, junior days and like events are a thing of the past — at least for 2020.

“It’s very gratifying to have hard work open up opportunities, but I also enjoy the grind,” Giansante said. “Without camps or summer visits, I tried to demonstrate my strength, movement, flexibility and power through workout videos.

“I attribute getting at least five of my offers as a direct result of these videos. I had one coach tell me he had no intention of offering me a scholarship until he saw me move during a workout I posted.”

Giansante planned to commit before his senior season, which hangs in the balance with covid-19 continuing to spread in the region.

Summer workouts have begun for many high school programs but training camps aren’t scheduled to open until August.

“Recruiting can be very time-consuming and distracting, and I want to focus on my team and senior season,” Giansante said. “And based on the offers I had, it confirmed there was no reason to wait. I would have been happy at any one of the schools.”

Nine others, all Football Championship Subdivision programs, also liked Giansante. His additional offers were Sacred Heart, Bryant, Columbia, Dartmouth, Penn, Fordham, Monmouth, Brown and Virginia Military Institute.

Conference USA program Western Kentucky separated itself for several reasons, Giansante said, not the least of which was the coaching staff and a linemen’s dream of a dining hall.

Offensive line coach Mike Goff, a 12-year NFL player, impressed Giansante, who played primarily on the offensive side of the ball last season at Norwin.

“He has knowledge I want to tap into,” Giansante said. “I think learning from him will provide the best opportunity for me to achieve my goal of playing professionally one day. I really appreciated his early confidence in me. With him, there wasn’t much of a recruiting process. He liked what he saw on film and called me with an offer. He has been very accessible and courteous to me and my family, and very easy to talk to.”

Norwin coach Dave Brozeski is a fan of the lineman’s work ethic and intellect.

Giansante also did his homework on reigning conference coach of the year Tyson Helton.

“He turned the program around in one year, including crushing Arkansas and beating Western Michigan in the First Responder Bowl,” he said.

And about that dining hall?

“The residence hall I will be staying at is a newer dorm and its first floor houses a dining hub that is open from early morning until late at night,” Giansante said. “It’s one of the first things coach Goff told me about. He knows free, all-day dining is a lineman’s dream situation.”

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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