Dobbs picked up the offer from UConn coach Paul Pasqualoni during his first (ever) visit to Storrs with Milford Academy coach Bill Chaplick on Wednesday.
After returning home to Ansonia, Dobbs didn’t wait long to give Pasqualoni his final decision.
“It didn’t take much,” said Dobbs, who has made no secret of his desire to play for the Huskies since his breakout, all-state senior year at Ansonia. “I pretty much ate breakfast on it.”
Dobbs called Pasqualoni around noontime on Thursday to say “yes.”
“It means everything to me,” said Dobbs, who ran for 3,445 yards and 40 touchdowns and led the Chargers to the Class S championship game. “I’m a Connecticut guy and to be playing for the best team in your state is an honor.
“It’s a huge weight off my shoulders. I got my first offer and it was from school that I wanted it to be. It took awhile before they came around. But it’s meant a lot. …Coach Pasqualoni said they were expecting big things out of me.”
Dobbs will be a member of UConn’s 2012 recruiting class. He is still required to attend Milford Academy this fall. He will sign a Letter of Intent in February, but will enroll as a UConn in January to participate in spring practice next year.
“This is the beginning of my new life,” Dobbs said. “This is just the tip of the iceberg.”
Dobbs, the second all-time leading rusher in Connecticut history behind former teammate Alex Thomas (now at Yale) and the 2010 Connecticut Post football MVP, said he spoke to Pasqualoni one-on-one during his visit to Storrs.
“Coach Pasqualoni is a straight-up guy, he doesn’t want people who he doesn’t think will contribute or truly loves football. We pretty much saw eye-to-eye on that,” Dobbs said. “Football is my life. I’d like to make a living out of it. I learned, from my senior year, that you have to work to be the best. Now I need to work even harder.”
Pasqualoni impressed Dobbs with his history of recruiting and developing Connecticut’s top football players while head coach at Syracuse in in the 1990s and early 2000s. New Britain’s Tebucky Jones, Bloomfield’s Dwight Freeney, Cheshire’s Kyle and Ian McIntosh, Greenwich OL Scott Kiernan all started for Pasqualoni at Syracuse.
“He was telling me back in the day, Syracuse was the place to go for Connecticut guys,” Dobbs said. “Now he wants to change that. He wants to make sure the best players in Connecticut play for UConn.”
Dobbs said he though his signing would open doors for all other Connecticut high school football players to come after him, especially his younger brothers. He’s the second oldest of seven boys.
“I see this as me setting the example for them,” Dobbs said.
VIDEO: Montrell Dobbs (5) and Ansonia playing in the CIAC Class S state championship game vs. St. Joseph (and future Milford Academy teammate Tyler Matakevich) in December.
VIDEO: Dobbs talks about playing in the Class S title game (with 2010 highlights)
Correction: Dobbs was incorrectly listed as the state’s second all-time leading rusher. He is listed fifth all-time.