Christian Bentancur recalls a few years ago watching college football games, thinking about what it would be like to be recruited by the most prominent NCAA Division I schools.
And now Bentancur, who will be a junior wide receiver at Marian Central, is finding out.
Bentancur’s list of schools that have extended offers hit 28 Wednesday with two more big-time programs, Ohio State and Florida, jumping. On Friday, Bentancur announced on his Twitter page that Clemson had offered. Some others who recently offered were Oregon, Michigan and Oklahoma.
“It’s crazy. As a kid you watch them on the TV and you’re like, ‘I wonder what these people are going through,’ and then you start going through it, and it’s absolutely nuts,” Bentancur said. “Every [offer] I’m super blessed for, and I’m excited to keep on this recruiting process.”
Bentancur has caught 89 passes in two seasons (one abbreviated by COVID-19) for 1,792 yards and 24 touchdowns. He is a two-time Northwest Herald All-Area first-team receiver.
At 6-foot-4, 235 pounds, Bentancur projects as a tight end in college. He recently visited Ohio State and Clemson, where he had workouts at camps. Ohio State coach Ryan Day made the offer to Bentancur on Wednesday. Florida coach Billy Napier’s staff also offered that day.
“Usually, on the phone, it’s 15-, 20-minute conversations,” Bentancur said. “Most of the places I know pretty well, so there’s no introductions, we just talk about what they think of me, and they offer me, and we talk about what I’m looking for.
“I kind of figured it out myself,” Bentancur said of the recruitment process. “Luke Dalton [a former Marian offensive lineman now at Cincinnati] helped me set up my Twitter and stuff like that. I went through all that. I talked to other players on recruiting visits about how they went through it.”
Bentancur plans to visit Wisconsin on Tuesday and has other visits set for Louisville and Arkansas, all schools that have issued offers. He will meet the coaching staff, take campus tours, learn about the programs and do photo shoots.
Bentancur plans on taking his five official visits during his junior year, but likely in the spring semester and not during his football season.
Currently, he is practicing with Marian’s football team and going to basketball camp. He also is working with Marian graduate Pat Wenzel at Davis Speed Center in Crystal Lake.
Bentancur embraces the attention of recruiting, although it can become intense.
“I’ve learned to enjoy it,” he said. “Some parts are overwhelming and stressful at times. I’ve been enjoying and am blessed with the position I’m in right now.”