For kicker Miller Snyder of Charlotte (N.C.) Myers Park, his invitation to the U.S. Army All-American Bowl came as somewhat of a surprise, but definitely a memorable and exciting surprise. On Tuesday, this surprise also became a reality, as Snyder received his official game jersey.
"I found out two weeks ago," said Snyder. "I was extremely excited. I walked up to my coach's office, opened up the folder and saw that I was one of 90 players in the entire country to be invited to the game. I was ecstatic. I was in a haze when I left his office, and I told one of my friends. In a few minutes there were eight people at my locker looking at my invite. It was very exciting."
Now with the invite behind him, Snyder realizes that he will be competing with many of the top players in the country while in San Antonio.
"I mean it feels amazing," said Snyder. "It's a bit of added pressure, but that comes with everything. I'm excited for the challenge. I have a few months in the off-season to train and I'm ready to rise for the challenge."
While Snyder was obviously excited, he was not alone in these feelings.
"My coach is ecstatic too," said Snyder. "He thinks the world of me and is so happy that this opportunity came. My family is equally happy, and my friends want to know when the game is and what channel the game is on. The whole school knows and everyone is very happy for me."
When it comes to recruiting, Snyder seems to be taking everything in stride.
"Right now I have an offer from Columbia, and I got that this past summer," said Snyder. "I went to a bunch of other camps and got on their radar too. NC State is looking at me and they're pretty high on my list, and at UNC I won their camp this past summer. I've also been talking to Coach (Ted) Cain from Vanderbilt for a while and Elon has been showing me a ton of interest, too."
Snyder has a few things he will be looking for in a school when it comes time to make a final decision.
"Well I want to be an engineer so I'm looking at the academics," said Snyder. "If I get hurt and can't play, I'm looking for an education. And then how they help me academically, so if I need help, how they can help me succeed. I'll also be looking at the coaching staff and their reputation."
On the field this fall, Snyder has become a jack-of-all-trades kicker for Myers Park.
"I'm doing really well as kicking goes," said Snyder. "I'm 90 percent on touchback, and I'm hitting them out of the end zone most of the time. My punting keeps getting better and better too. I think I have a 42-yard net so far. I forced two or three fumbles from my high punts. I haven't punted as long as I've been kicking, but I'm getting better. Overall it's been a good season and I'm proud."
Snyder hopes that this versatility will help him at the next level.
"I've been marketing myself as a combo guy," said Snyder. "I'd like to kick in college, but I'm working hard on my punting and getting better."
Snyder will handle the punting duties at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl and could also handle kickoff duties.