Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun
Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2013 | 4:30 p.m.
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Las Vegas Sun sports reporters Ray Brewer and Case Keefer are back to look at the high school basketball scene. Listen to see if Keefer backs down from his preseason pick of Centennial to win the state championship.
One of Nevada’s best high school football wide receivers is headed to a college football program not known for throwing the football.
Bishop Gorman’s Jamir Tillman, who had 136 catches for 1,917 yards and 31 touchdowns during his four-year varsity career for the Las Vegas powerhouse Gaels, verbally committed Tuesday evening to Navy.
Navy, of course, operates a run-first offense. That doesn’t faze the 6-foot-3 Tillman.
“I’ve always been a good blocker,” Tillman said. “I definitely don’t mind blocking.”
Jamir Tillman, who also had a scholarship offer from Georgetown and recruiting interest from schools such as Tulsa and Duke, says Navy was a perfect fit.
“It’s the whole aspect of the Naval Academy and what it offers,” Tillman said. “Playing Division I football, being set for life (after football) and being taught by leaders.”
Tillman led Gorman in receiving last fall with 58 receptions for 958 yards and 12 touchdowns in helping the Gaels win their fourth straight state championship.
With Gorman playing several games against ranked opponents on national television, Tillman was able to shine on high school football’s biggest stage. Now, he’ll get to play in arguably the most important college football game each season — the Army-Navy game.
“That is one of America’s great traditions,” said Tillman, who is the son of former NFL wide receiver Cedric Tillman.
Tillman will join several Southern Nevadans in the Navy program, including a three Gorman graduates — offensive lineman Sam Womack (2008), defensive end Evan Palelei (2009) and defensive back Togasii Peko (2011).
Tillman is the fifth from Gorman to give a verbal commitment, joining quarterback Anu Solomon (Arizona), defensive back Lorenzo Fertitta Jr. (Villanova), Justin Sweet (Colorado State) and 2014 defensive lineman Isaiah Nacua (BYU).
Verbal commitments are non-binding until an athlete signs a letter-of-intent on national signing day, which is Feb. 6.
Gorman wide receiver Ryan Smith previously committed to New Mexico, but is still going through the process. His father DeAndre Smith left his assistant coaching position at New Mexico this week for a similar spot at Syracuse.