Todd Peat Jr. has family in the military so getting an invitation to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl is special not only because he'll get to play against many of the nation's top players but he'll get to thank lots of heroes during the week.
It's something the Tempe (Ariz.) Corona Del Sol defensive tackle is looking forward to most.
"It's a huge honor to be selected as one of the top players in the country and it's great that we could do something for the Army," Peat said. "Those people sacrifice so much for our country every day and do it for us just out of their patriotism. It's awesome we could do something for them.
"I have a lot of family in the Army. My uncle is a vet and I have two cousins who are serving right now. I just think it's awesome to be able to go down there and interact with those guys, have fun with them and then be able to play a football game."
Peat, a 6-foot-3, 300-pound four-star prospect, is really excited for the week in San Antonio. He wants to test himself against the best offensive linemen, go head-to-head with many of them and see exactly where he stands.
In high school, teams usually double team Peat or simply run away from him so sometimes his impact is limited. At the Army game, there are all-stars all over the field so it's going to give Peat a sense of what college football will be like.
"I'm really looking forward to it, just playing against the best guys and really getting a taste for what it's going to be like in college," Peat said.
"I'm looking to play against those guys because they don't have to double team you, they don't have to run away from you so it will be a great opportunity to see where I'm at."
Peat's college future is still being determined. This weekend he's on his first official visit to Arizona State and it could be an important trip. The Sun Devils were the first to offer and have been recruiting him for years. Since it's the hometown team, Arizona State has to be considered a contender for his commitment.
"That was my first offer and it's a school I really like," Peat said. "I grew up a Sun Devil fan and all my family members are ASU people. I have built a great relationship with the coaching staff there over the past four years and I'm looking forward to going down and having a great weekend with those people."
Thanksgiving weekend Peat will take an official visit to Nebraska and he has a trip scheduled to Oregon State when the Beavers host Oregon.
He has already taken three unofficial visits to Stanford, another of his favorites, but said he's uncertain if he'll take an official trip there. Peat said he plans to announce his commitment at the Army game.
"They're one of the top schools," Peat said of Nebraska. "I think I have a great opportunity at Nebraska. It's a great football program. When you talk about the great football programs around the country you talk about Nebraska, Ohio State, USC, Alabama.
"(Oregon State) has always been a school I really liked. There were a couple guys from my school that went to Oregon State. Their coaching staff is filled with just great people and they run a great program. I feel like they are some of the most upstanding guys around, the coaches at Oregon State."