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December 31, 2008SAN ANTONIO - During the pre-week festivities of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl this week, many of the players are hanging out with their fellow peers that have committed to the same school. Perhaps no other group is as prominent as Notre Dame's six All-Americans.
"It's exciting to see all the great players in my class," said defensive tackle Tyler Stockton. "I'll be able to compete with them and see where I'm at on this highest level.
"This is a great time. It's an opportunity to meet all of them and hang out with them because I'm going to be around them for the next four or five years."
Since day one, the Princeton (NJ) native has had fun hanging out with his future Irish teammates. Things will definitely be interesting as the group is equally divided on the both the East and West teams.
"I definitely want to give (West running back) Cierre Wood a smacking or two and (West wide receiver) Shaquelle Evans as well if he comes across the middle. I'm ready."
Since committing to Notre Dame on the same day back on April 19th, Stockton and Wood have developed a close friendship. It's hard to decipher which individual out of the talented duo is the most vocal.
"I already told Cierre that if he's running, I'm going to catch him no matter where he's at because he knows he's not faster than me.
"Plus, let me tell you about how I beat Cierre in video games at the spring game. I beat him in Madden."
"Don't listen to that lie," piped in Wood from the background. "We never finished the game. He took over for Jake Golic, who was getting smacked. We were tied but never were able to finish the game so don't listen to him."
Besides the obvious developed camaraderie between the other commitments, Stockton has other reasons as to why Notre Dame is the perfect fit for the Hun School senior.
"Everyone's dream is to go to the NFL," said Stockton. "But if that doesn't happen, with a Notre Dame degree I can do whatever I want to in life and be successful. That's why I chose the school so I'm excited."
The Rivals.com ranked no.15 defensive tackle in the country wants all the Irish faithful to keep an eye on him Saturday during the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. If it's up to Stockton, it won't be very hard to find him.
"I'm coming in talking smack and I'm taking names!" he laughed. "I'm ready!"