James Vaughters: Stanford is clearly among the elite academically in the world, and I wanted to go somewhere that I liked. After I thought about it, I really did want to go away to school. I liked the idea of going to a school that I might not be able to get in to, if I didn't play football.
On one hand, I believe in the coaches, Harbaugh, Fangio, Mason, Anderson, and others, but my dad challenged me to make sure the school I picked, I would attend, even if the coach left for another job. Stanford fit that description. It was also important to me that I truly believe that Stanford football can do something very special, under their leadership and with the best talent that Stanford can recruit.
If we can do something special, like a national championship, while I am there, that will be extra special, versus winning another national championship at the other schools I was considering.
That being said, I really think I will fit well with the Stanford student body, because they are the best and brightest, they work hard and play hard and they are a diverse group from different cultures, races, geographies, socio-economic backgrounds, etc.
It was also important that I feel comfortable being that far from home and it's great my aunt, uncle, and two cousins live in nearby Los Altos, Calif. That provides me an added sense of security and support knowing I have family nearby.
TB: You have mentioned Vic Fangio being a major consideration in your recruitment several times. What was it about him that helped improve your confidence in Stanford's ability to help mold you into an NFL prospect?
JV: I really feel like I have connected with Coach Fangio. I think he will be a great teacher for me, at my position, not only to the ways of Stanford, but also to the ways of the NFL, if I am blessed to have that opportunity. His experience in the NFL will be a tremendous asset to me and I like him as a person and the demeanor I have seen so far. We all know it could change once practice starts...LOL!
TB: Have you started with the admissions process/application? Do you know what you might want to major in?
JV: I have started on the admissions process as we speak. I recently received the application and now with the summer here, I have spare time to focus on completing it. In terms of a major, my interest is in architecture, but for me, it was more important to be at a school like Stanford, where if I decided to change majors, I would be at a school that was top-tier in that program as well and that's what I like about Stanford. I plan to study architecture, but I want to keep my options open during my freshmen year. I want to make sure I pick a major I can be passionate about.
TB: You've also mentioned that you hope to recruit other top talent to the school you commit to. Talk about your plans to try to convince other recruits to come to Palo Alto. Also, are there any other recruits in particular you plan to go after hard?
JV: I have communicated with several of the other 2011 commits and some of the others still "on the fence". We're using Facebook and texting to go back and forth. With Stanford's academic reputation and the current staff's coaching and leadership, there is no limit as to what we can accomplish and the other commits and I are just offering the other recruits an opportunity to "join in on the fun" and be a part of something that can be truly special.
TB: Finally, how solid would you consider your Stanford commitment? Do you plan to take any other visits?
JV: The commitment to Stanford is SOLID. I started the process early so I feel like my family and I have done our research. I am convinced Stanford is the best fit for me. Right now, we don't have any plans to take any other visits. We have visited every campus that we would consider, so I am not sure what other factors we would consider.
The Bootleg would like to thank James for his time and consideration throughout the recruiting process.
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