Young Footballers to Watch: Joey O'Connor and Shane Dillon

May 2011

Windsor may seem like a sleepy commuter town, but thanks to Joey O'Connor, the northern Front Range burg is waking up to some national attention these days. The 6-foot-5-inch, 288-pound Windsor High School junior is drawing the type of attention that pays for college and puts young football players on a path toward the NFL. O'Connor has already been awarded scholarships from the University of Colorado Boulder, Colorado State, Utah, Penn State, and South Carolina, as well as verbal offers from Arizona State and UCLA (Greeley Tribune). O'Connor says he'll spend the summer before his senior year attending football camps and clinics, then enjoying his last year in high school before formally committing to a university in February 2012.

Shane Dillon was in a similar situation before the 6-foot-5-inch quarterback, out of southern California's Christian Junior Senior High School, committed to CU (Daily Camera). Dillon, a blue-chip (highly coveted) prospect, is another score for CU's new coach, Jon Embree, who has been slowly rebuilding the team's roster and inspiring more confidence as he goes along. Former coach Dan Hawkins' failure to land a true blue-chip quarterback (aside from his undersize son; sorry, Cody) was a constant sore point with CU fans and boosters. Embree is looking to change that: "When I came in and started assessing the roster, it was a very thin position at quarterback, and this game is driven at quarterback," he says.