August 20, 2009
Tim Phillips joins the backfield
The Chippewas 2009 recruiting class will see plenty of playing time come gameday. One such player who has looked very impressive thus far and has generated a ton of early buzz is Tim Phillips. Hailing from the Bluegrass State of Kentucky, the 5-foot-5 and 165 pound Phillips landed at CMU because the Chippewas were willing to roll the dice on a player who didn't fit other schools physical criteria.
"CMU was my only offer," said Phillips. "My mother and I took a visit up here and it was wonderful. Honestly, I think the Lord has sent me here for a purpose, so this is where I'm at".
Despite numerous schools, including those in his home state, passing him over, Phillips refuses to let others opinions put a chip on his shoulder.
"I don't have a chip on my shoulder at all, I just go out and play because I know what I can do".
Phillips brings a plethora of skills to the offensive side of the ball. He is a fast, shifty runner that has incredible balance.
"I thank the Lord for giving me speed, and I think I have very good vision" said Phillips on his strengths.
He has drawn rave reviews from teammates, coaches and members of the media. On the opposite side of the ball, starting All-MAC linebacker Nick Bellore even tabbed Phillips as the hardest player to tackle for CMU. Those impressions left on his teammates earned him the right to remove the white stripe on his helmet that symbolizes all freshmen in camp. Phillips was the first freshman to receive the honor, which can only be bestowed when the team feels a freshman has earned it.
"It was a good feeling; you know the honor and tradition of having your stripe removed. At the same time, I still have a lot to learn and a lot to build upon. It's an honor, but I still have a ways to go" added Phillips.
Part of being a freshman is getting acclimated to the team and learning the playbook. When asked about his goals for the season, Phillips was quick to point out that he's still a freshman and still soaking in everything.
"My goals, first of all is to learn the plays," laughed Phillips. "That's what I've been struggling with. So that and just to perform well and make every play a positive and make every situation I'm in, make it progress".
While learning an advanced playbook takes time for even the best and brightest of players, Phillips is learning from veteran players in the hopes it will ease his transition.
"They've just taught me it's all a mental game. Your going to be in different types of situations where your mentality is challenged, and they just teach me how to handle certain situations".
Look for Tim Phillips to make a significant impact for the Chippewas in 2009 and for years well after.
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