Drue Tranquill To Notre Dame, Tyler Hands Picks UIndy, Alex Bartkus With Mount Union

Carroll Athletes Sign National Letters of Intent (PHOTOS & VIDEO)

By Eric Dutkiewicz - 21Alive

February 5, 2014 Updated Feb 24, 2014 at 10:23 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (21Alive) - While most of the school districts in Northeast Indiana cancelled school Wednesday, high school football players from across the country still needed to send in their national letters of intent.

Such was the case at Carroll High School with seniors Drue Tranquill and Tyler Hands finalizing their college plans at a ceremony at the school.

Tranquill, 2013 21Alive/Parkview Sports Medicine High School Football Player of the Year, signed with the University of Notre Dame after a high profile senior campaign that saw the Chargers standout commit to Purdue then switch to Notre Dame when he received a scholarship offer from the Fighting Irish.

"It's a huge weight off your shoulders to sign that dotted line," Tranquill says. "seeing the coaches to finally get to talk about us and their short statements about our future."

Tranquill's new coach, Brian Kelley, praised the two-way player, and says it is yet to be determined which position he will play.

"Does he play safety? Does he play running back?," Kelly asked rhetorically at a Notre Dame signing day press conference Wednesday afternoon. "I don't know where he plays. But he's going to play somewhere here at Notre Dame. Because he's a darn good football player."

Tranquill's teammate, defensive lineman Tyler Hands, inked his letter of intent with the University of Indianapolis. He says he chose the school for not only its football program, but to help him in his pre-med and molecular biology studies.

"I'm already going in with a full head of steam," Hands says. "The great football tradition there really progressing, and the chance to win (NCAA Division II) national championships."

Teammate Alex Bartkus celebrated his national letter of intent on Feb. 24. The safety joins a Division III powerhouse.

"I liked the overall feel of a D-III school," Bartkus says. "All the coaches were contacting me personally. I felt like they had a lot more interest in me."

Click on the video icons to hear more from the student athletes.

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