Western Michigan just had a different feel for Cary-Grove class of 2019 offensive lineman Addison West.
On Saturday, West made his verbal commitment to the Broncos football program, announcing his decision on Twitter.
West chose Western Michigan, which is in Kalamazoo, Michigan, over a handful of other Division I offers, which included Central Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Northern Illinois, New Mexico and Ohio.
“When I was there, it was so much different,” West said. “It just felt different. I just really liked it.”
West is a 6-foot-3, 285-pound lineman who started on the Trojans’ varsity squad as a sophomore in 2016 and was a part of playoff teams each of the past two seasons.
C-G head coach Brad Seaburg previously said West’s size stood out early on when West first came to C-G. West, who also plays basketball, is athletic for his size.
He was wowed by the facilities on campus in Kalamazoo, many of which are “basically almost brand new.” It’s also close enough that his family can make the trip for home games.
Western Michigan head coach Tim Lester will enter his second season as Broncos coach in August. Lester played at Wheaton Warrenville South in the mid-1990s before college ball at Western Michigan. He later played for the Chicago Enforcers of the XFL and was the head coach at Elmhurst College for five seasons.
Offensive coordinator coach Jake Moreland, who is also the offensive line coach, also played at Western Michigan, and briefly in the NFL.
“I love the coaching staff,” West said. “I remember going to a practice. They’re not going to sugarcoat anything. If you do something wrong, they’ll tell you. I was at a camp and [Moreland] pulled me aside and we worked on some things. I really liked his coaching.”
Seeing the recent success of the Broncos – which included a 13-1 season in 2016, capped off by a trip to the Cotton Bowl – was another big factor in West’s decision.
“When I’m going there, I’m trying to do the same thing, trying to get back to a big bowl game,” West said. “Try to bring the team a MAC championship.”