Former Brophy Bronco Andrew Curtis adjusting to new environmentby Fabian Ardaya on Oct. 27, 2013, under College Football
Former Brophy Bronco Andrew Curtis surprised a lot of people last winter in electing to go to Florida Atlantic University along with teammate Robert Relf, but has made the most of his time in Boca Raton.
Curtis was a star linebacker for the Broncos, as Brophy College Prep ran off a record of 28-10 during his three varsity seasons. After picking up 71 tackles (three for loss) in his sophomore year along with an interception, he would explode for dominant junior (105 tackles, three sacks, three fumble recoveries, one forced fumble, one interception and three pass break-ups) and senior years (105 tackles, fifteen tackles for loss, three forced fumbles, a fumble recovery, six passes broken up and two interceptions). Curtis would graduate as the Bronco’s all-time leader in tackles (279), and would garner the attention of schools such as Akron, Northern Illinois, Arizona State, and the University of Arizona before committing to Florida Atlantic.
After eliminating Akron and Northern Illinois due to their cold weather environments, it was between Arizona, Arizona State, and Florida Atlantic. Curtis, electing to not go to his father’s alma mater at Arizona State, chose FAU.
“The problem with (Arizona State and Arizona is), they offer way too many kids and way too many kids accept scholarships,” Curtis said. ”So that wasn’t a realistic possibility for me.”
Curtis’ decision to go to Florida Atlantic came as a shock to many, as Curtis wasn’t even considering the school until they contacted him.
“Our season was coming to an end in Phoenix and I got a call from one of the graduate assistants who actually played at our rival high school, Hamilton. He was familiar with Brophy and all those good football schools we have down there and he put us in contact with (Florida Atlantic head coach Carl) Palini and thats how we got to know each other,” Curtis said.
Moving from Florida to Arizona certainly can be a lot to get accustomed to, but Curtis has made the transition a smooth one.
“The humidity (in Florida) kind of gets you. When you practice, you sweat gallons at a time and in Arizona, you have that dry heat and your skin’s burning a little. But it definitely prepares you for each other,” Curtis said.
It also doesn’t hurt that Florida Atlantic (2-6, 1-4 Conference USA) is having a solid transition year to Conference USA, making FAU even more welcome for Curtis.
“I love (Florida Atlantic) so far,” Curtis said. “The weather is good. The team’s good. I think we have a good atmosphere around this team which made it very easy for me to come right into. All the kids got along with each other and that’s something I wanted when I was looking to go play football.”
The true freshman has had to come with reality as a college football player, and has learned a lot from his experience so far.
“Every opponent you play, they’re fundamentally sound. They’re all strong, they’re all fast and you have to prepare your body to be the same. In high school you can get away with a things during the game, but here you really have to be on top of your game. You need to know your plays and assignments and keep your body in shape,” he said.
While he has yet to get much playing time as a true freshman (has just one tackle, coming in FAU’s 28-10 win over South Florida), the future still remains bright for a kid who last year was one of Arizona’s best.