CHARLESTON, W.Va. — South Charleston will-be senior running back/linebacker A.D. Cunningham has committed to play football at the Division I level for Charlotte. Cunningham officially received an offer from the coaching staff on Wednesday morning.
“The coaches showed me a lot of love – they took to me both times I went down there for visits, showed me they were interested in me and that they really wanted me,” Cunningham said. “Whatever they ask me to do is what I’ll do. They were my choice from the beginning.”
Cunningham, who stands in at 6-foot, 210 pounds, is expected to play outside linebacker for Charlotte in the 49ers’ 3-4 defense.
“A.D. is a good worker and is very good in the weight room,” said South Charleston head coach Donnie Mays. “He understands what it takes to compete. His dad, Will King, was also a great football player who is in the Marshall Hall of Fame and played in the CFL. A.D. has a good football background, he knows what it takes, he’s definitely talented enough and he’s looking forward to that opportunity.”
Charlotte just completed its first football season as an FCS Independent, going 5-6 last year. The 49ers will eventually make the jump to Conference USA for football in 2015.
Cunningham this past year rushed for 1,042 yards and 11 touchdowns for the Black Eagles, while collecting in 19 catches for 269 yards and five touchdowns as well.
By committing early, Cunningham can use the next few months over the summer and his senior season focusing just on football, already having his recruiting process complete.
“I didn’t know what other offers would have come in by the end of my senior season,” he said. “But my ultimate goal for next year is to win a state championship. I want to go into the season quicker, stronger and faster – but my ultimate goal is to win a state championship and I think we have what it takes.”
A couple of Cunningham’s teammates are also receiving looks on the recruiting trail in junior quarterback Kentre Grier and sophomore receiver Derrek Pitts.
“West Virginia and Coach (Shannon) Dawson have been there on Kentre, Akron is big on him right now, Marshall (has shown interest) and Clemson absolutely loves his film,” Mays said of Grier. “He’ll be attending each one of those school’s camps this summer, as well as a few others. Those are his top four right now that he likes.”