It was a fairly simple choice of colleges for Prairie View High School graduate and football player Eliah Padilla.
“I chose Feather River (Community College in Quincy, California, about 80 miles northwest of Reno, Nevada) over other schools because it felt like my home away from home,” he said.
Padilla didn’t get an on-site visit to the campus. But head football coach Nick Goulet “made sure to give me multiple virtual tours.”
“But it didn’t play too much of a factor because it is still in California,” Padilla said.
Padilla played quarterback in seven of the ThunderHawks’ games last season. He completed 13 of 23 passes for 280 yards and five touchdowns. He ran the ball 22 times for 149 yards and scored two touchdowns, and Padilla caught 10 passes for 173 yards and scored a TD.
“I had multiple other schools interested in me,” Padilla said. “But, like I said, coach Goulet wanted me to be an Eagle and never gave up on getting me to be one. So, that’s what got me.”
Distance from home was a small factor.
“Distance always plays a huge part no matter what you’re doing or going,” Padilla said. “But yes, it plays a big part. It definitely made the choice hard, although I still get to do what I love in a beautiful state.”
Padilla wants to major in business. His goal is to get a journeyman’s license and open up an electrical company.
“The pandemic impacted a lot of things,” he said. “I lost a year of eligibility my junior year after coming off and hot sophomore year. I couldn’t play a down of varsity junior year. The recruiting process was impacted because the coaches couldn’t recruit the way they would’ve liked to recruit, like camps, home visits, school visits, etc.”
Come what may, Padilla is anxious to move on.
“I’m ready to get this show on the road and start this football season,” Padilla said. “Definitely has been a crazy journey. I just want to thank everyone who has pushed me through it all.”
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