New South Florida Bulls tight end Mitchell Brinkman was kind enough to answer a few questions from The Daily Stampede about his recruiting process, and why he ultimately chose USF over the other schools vying for his attention.
The 6’3”, 252-lbs grad transfer caught 34 passes for 445 yards, and three touchdowns in 2019 for the Northern Illinois Huskies.
The interview took place over text and has been edited for clarity.
The Daily Stampede: With your final year of eligibility, what was the list of priorities for you in finding a new home?
Mitchell Brinkman: The biggest [priority] was I wanted the best fit for academically. I’m pursing my MBA, and South Florida stood out the most for me. [Ed. note: Shout out Muma College of Business]. Next, was the athletics part. Head coach Jeff Scott, [Offensive Coordinator] Charlie Weis, Jr., and [Tight Ends coach] Joey King were extremely transparent throughout the whole process which made it easy for me to decide on USF.
TDS: You entered the tranfer portal on Monday, and committed by Friday, how many schools contacted you, and how much of a whirlwind have the last four days been?
Brinkman: There are too many schools to count. I was down to
Texas Tech, Temple, and USF. My next two were Florida State, and Rutgers. I was getting calls every hour, and the whole thing was very stressful. I’m happy to have found a place I feel is best for me. [Ed. note: Brinkman’s former NIU coach Rod Carey is the head coach at Temple.]
TDS: How much film did you watch from Coach Weis at FAU with former tight ends Harrison Bryant, and John Raine before or after the decision?
Brinkman: [Coach Weis and I] watched about an hour or so of film together on Zoom. This was all before the decision, and ultimately was a huge deciding factor in my commitment.
TDS: What would you say is your biggest strength?
Brinkman: Definitely leadership. I feel that I bring a lot of knowledge having learned two different offenses in my career.
TDS: Were there any particular package or set of plays that got you hooked on their offense?
Brinkman: It was more than the plays. It was the coaching staff that got me hooked on [USF].
TDS: Finally, how strange was it getting recruited in the middle of a pandemic?
Brinkman: It was definitely not ideal, but overall, my experience was great. With technology I was able to virtually meet the staff. I’m looking forward to meeting them in person!