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LAS VEGAS, Nev. — Forget about two stars, Salpointe Catholic safety Teauntae Nash has none.
Nash, a senior next season, is not listed by Rivals, Scout or 247Sports. Arizona linebacker Scooby Wright made his rise legendary from two-star status by high school recruiting services to a series of college national awards after this season.
Nash is listed at 5’11” and 185 pounds by MaxPreps.com, but even he says “I am a 5’9″ or 5’10” safety, so I have to just be wise with what I do.”
He has a lot of smarts with his desire to earn an engineering degree. He is not bent on making it to the NFL like his grandfather, former Arizona receiver Charles Nash Sr., did after the 1976 season. Nash’s father, Charles Nash Jr., also attended Arizona on a football scholarship in 1997 before transferring to NAU in 1998.
“They just tell me to always play 100 percent and to not give up,” Nash told me Sunday following the Rivals.com Camp Series at Clark High School in Las Vegas. “They tell me to work hard and it will all pay off.
“They say don’t worry about going against a four-star or five-star player, all the hard work will pay off. Today, my dad was telling me that if today I was locking up four-star and five-star players, people will notice that. I don’t need to be worried about that type of stuff. It will come. He told me to be patient and work hard and do my thing out there.”
Nash made the most of his opportunity at the Rivals event, allowing only one ball to be caught against him on one-on-one drills. One of the coaches at the camp employed by Rivals and Under Armour told Nash afterward to keep going strong.
“I feel like I can compete with the best,” Nash said. “You see these guys, four-star and five-star, and I feel like I can compete with them. It’s just a confidence-type thing. It gives me that backing that all of this hard work is paying off.”
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Nash plans to attend a few more camps, which will increase his exposure to recruiting services. Among them are the Nike Football Opening Regionals in Los Angeles next month.
“A few coaches have e-mailed me and asked for my film and all of that,” Nash said. “When spring ball comes around, they’ll be coming to the school and they’ll see me in person and make an evaluation.”
He is realistic about his future without all of the accolades yet entering his senior season.
“Everybody wants to play Division I and for Alabama and Florida State, but on the more realistic side, I am a 5’9″ or 5’10” safety so I just have to be wise with what I do,” he said. “Obviously I want to play big-time football like everybody, but I have to be smart.
“I want to get a good education. I’m really not looking at the NFL. That’s a dream, but I want to be an engineer. I will make sure I go to a good school.”
Coming from a lineage of Arizona football players, albeit his dad transferred to NAU, and growing up in Tucson, the natural question to ask: Does he want to be a Wildcat?
“Arizona has sent a lot of mail,” Nash said. “Coach (Jeff) Casteel (Arizona’s defensive coordinator) has come to the school and talked to me and (teammate) Justin (Holt) a few times.
“They have a good engineering program, but I kind of want to get out of Tucson and experience something else. But if they offer (a scholarship), I will go. Whoever wants to pay for my education, I’ll go.”