Sterling, VA (Feb. 23, 2016) – Potomac Falls senior defensive end Dondrea Tillman signed his National Letter of Intent to play football for the Indiana University of Pennsylvania beginning the 2016/2017 academic school year.
“It felt good to commit to IUP, said Tillman. I visited the school, met the players and coaches, attended a team workout; the campus was very nice with a modern feel, it felt like a good fit.”
Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP) is a public university located 60 miles northeast of Pittsburgh in Indiana County, PA. It is one of the two largest universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) and thus the commonwealth’s fourth largest public university. Students at IUP can choose from more than 130 bachelor’s programs and more than 50 master’s degrees, including those in the Eberly College of Business and Technology, the education school and the highly ranked criminology department.
“My recruiting experience was intense, shared Tillman. A lot of different coaches contacted me, each one promising something different. I had to sort through a lot of information, and am grateful of my mom’s help with that. The school location and success of the football program were important factors in committing to IUP, but the scholarship package was probably the most important to me, and my mom.”
Tillman’s head football coach will be Curt Cignetti. Coach Cignetti enters his fifth year at the helm of the IUP football program. Through four seasons, Cignetti has a record of 34-12, going 20-8 in PSAC West play and 2-1 in the NCAA playoffs. He has a record of 18-5 at home and 16-7 on the road.
“My first year, I expect to train well and get bigger, stronger, and faster; get to know the team and compete for a starting posting on the squad.”
The 2015 VHSL Group 5A First Team All-State defensive end, Conference 14 and All-Loudoun Defensive Player of the Year has played organized football since 3rd-grade. Tillman played for the Lower Loudoun Boy Football League (LLBFL) until attending Potomac Falls. When asked about his fondest memories playing high school football, Tillman shared: “I have a lot of fond memories with my team mates; how we both enjoyed our victories and how we all stuck together after a tough loss. It was great to make the playoffs my senior year, and especially nice to score a touchdown at our homecoming game.”
“I am thankful for the support of my father, Ben Tillman. He started me with football and coached me on the side all the time. I am thankful for Coach Allen, Coach Jackson, Coach Causey and my little league coaches for teaching me the game. And I am especially thankful to my mom for all her love and support.”
When asked what advice he’d give others on pursuing their dream, Tillman shared, “never let other people tell you what you can or cannot do. You decide what you want, and then work hard to get it. In football that means you have to grind every day, even when you are tired.”
Please join us in wishing Dondrea Tillman the very best in his success on the gridiron as he pursues a Sports Marketing and Business degree from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania.