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Kettle Run’s David Eldridge gets first NCAA Division I football scholarship offer

Friday, Jan. 17 | By Jeff Malmgren and Peter Brewington
Kettle Run junior David Eldridge received a football scholarship offer Friday from the University of Virginia. --Fauquier Times Staff Photo/Randy Litzinger
Kettle Run junior David Eldridge received his first NCAA Division I football scholarship offer Friday.

The University of Virginia made the offer after recently visiting Eldridge at Kettle Run High in Nokesville.

“It feels good," Eldridge said. "We’ll see what happens. I’ve just got to keep working."

Eldridge is one of a handful of Fauquier County players being recruited by college football teams, a group that includes Fauquier High's D.J. Helkowski. A senior punter and kicker, Helkowski recently committed to play on scholarship at Richmond.

Since Eldridge’s breakout football season ended in November, the junior wide receiver and electrifying kicker returner has been in contact with a few college football coaches, he said.

Eldridge said recruiters from Virginia Tech and Virginia recently visited Kettle Run and talked with him, while Connecticut coaches have spoken with his father and Cougars coach Jeff Lloyd.

"We sat down and watched film and talked," Lloyd said. "They all love his athleticism and the way he catches with his hands."

Lloyd thinks a scholarship offer from Connecticut is also likely, and that more schools will get involved after a more extensive recruiting package is received.

"They'll be more noise than these three" schools, he said.

A 6-foot-1, 165-pound, all-purpose player, Eldridge scored a team-high 15 touchdowns this past season for the Cougars and finished with 1,463 total yards as a receiver, defensive back, kick returner and punt returner.

Now he’s also producing for the Kettle Run basketball team. Eldridge has been one of the leading scorers for the Cougars over the past week.

He had a breakout game last Friday, coming off the bench to score a team-high 13 points and added five rebounds and two steals in a 62-55 loss to Fauquier. He then had eight points and four rebounds Wednesday during a 77-57 loss to Culpeper.

“Very active,” Cougars coach Troy Washington said after the Fauquier game. “He did some good things for us defensively too. … He’s a big part of our team.”

Eldridge’s role has increased since Christmas with a pair of Kettle Run teammates sitting out due to injuries – Jared Newcomer and Danny Mattson – as has the role of fellow football player Justus Drakeford.

“Our rotation’s changed a lot,” Washington said. “It’s been a good experience for those guys that maybe have not been playing in big time situations.”

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