The Jacksonville area will be absolutely loaded with prep football talent this fall. Among the best is Fletcher three-star offensive tackle Bradley Ashmore who is already committed to Vanderbilt.
1010XL caught up with Ashmore to talk about his commitment and senior season.
“I went on a visit up there Thanksgiving week; I got to see all the facilities and talk to all the coaches and really got to see what all Vanderbilt had to offer,” Ashmore told 1010XL. “I was up there all week because my entire mom’s side of the family lives in Nashville so we are up there a lot. That’s a big reason why I committed – there was family and the city.
“I just had a great experience and I loved everything about it. It’s everything I want in a school. I know there are bigger football schools out there, but I think Vanderbilt is the top tier and they are really on the rise right now. There is nothing that can beat it in my opinion.”
Ashmore (6-foot-6, 280 pounds) committed to Vanderbilt over offers from Auburn, Louisville, Missouri, Purdue and others. He has built a good relationship with Vanderbilt head coach Derek Mason through this process.
“Coach Mason is really a strong leader both on and off the field,” Ashmore said. “He knows how to talk to guys to get them to do what he wants. He also knows how to motivate you and bring out the best in you. He’s just an all-around great coach. He brings great energy and great leadership.”
What type of offensive lineman are the Commodores getting in Ashmore?
“I feel that I’m a pretty aggressive player,” Ashmore said. “I’m a nice guy off the field, but when I get on the field a switch flips. I finish my blocks and I have pretty good technique. All around I feel like I’m a pretty well rounded player.”
Ashmore is looking forward to the chance of getting Fletcher football back to where it once was come this fall.
“Fletcher has been in a slump the last few years and our goal is to build it back up to what we were before in its former glory,” he said. “We feel that’s our duty as our class to get back to the playoffs and to go farther than we did last year. We just want to uphold the tradition that Fletcher has always had and get back and start winning some more games.”
One more year at Fletcher means one more year with head coach Kevin Brown, who Ashmore says has had a big impact on him.
“Coach Brown is like another father figure to me,” Ashmore said. “I’m in Marine Coastal Club with him. We plant sea oats a couple times a month. We do service projects as well. He’s not just my football coach, he’s my mentor, my teacher, he’s everything.”
The class of 2020 is shaping up to be one of the most talent rich classes Northeast Florida has seen in a long time and Ashmore is proud to be a part of this class.
“It’s really special because when people talk about Florida football, they always talk about Miami and South Florida, but I think we are really starting to show that Northeast Florida can really ball too.”
(You can follow Ryan Green on Twitter @RyanGreen1010XL)