The plane ride from Virginia to California is a long one. And in the case of three-star athlete Jeffery Farrar, his trip home from his unofficial visit to Charlottesville last month may have played a big part in jump-starting his college decision.
Several days after committing to UVa, he says he couldn't imagine feeling more at home.
The 6-foot, 194-pound Farrar, a native of Upland (Calif.), picked Virginia over Cal and Arizona State last week. In the days since, he's felt a lot of love from the UVa coaches, recruits, and fans.
The process of becoming a Wahoo really began during his three-day trip in July. The process of coming to terms with when to make a decision began on the way back.
"Really, that whole plane ride back home from Virginia," Farrar told CavsCorner this week. "That's when I really started thinking. I was up the entire time, thinking about the schools that I had offers from and thinking about all of the schools that I had eliminated. I had a lot of time to think to myself about what I wanted and to really put myself in a scenario of what would happen if I went to each school and how the next few years of my life would be if I went to this school or that school.
"I had a lot of time on my hands and that's when I knew I was going to make the decision pretty soon," he added.
Instead of waiting until the season to take official visits as he had planned, Farrar chose to set a time for his announcement. When he made the news public last week, he made head coach Mike London, in the midst of UVa's fall training camp, one happy man.
In fact, London's reaction on the field has already become a thing of legend.
"After I got out of the ESPN building, I walked away and called Coach London," Farrar recalled. "His son answered and ran the phone to him. I told him, 'Hey Coach, I want to thank you for recruiting me through this process and I really appreciate it.' And that's when he seemed kind of sad. And he said, 'Alright man, tell me who you're going to. Who did you pick?' And I told him, 'Oh, I'm going to play for you coach!'
"And that's when he got excited. I could hear the excitement on the phone with him but I wasn't on when he let out the yell. Everybody told me about it, though," Farrar said.
Since joining the UVa football family last week, Farrar says he's not only continued talk to the coaches but also to other recruits.
"I've talked to Quin, I've talked to Andrew, I've talked to J.J., Gary, all of them," he said. "They're all just really excited that I made that choice to come. All of the coaches on the staff sent me individual letters, handwritten letters, from Coach London and Coach [Anthony] Poindexter to everybody else. They all said different things but it was all basically a big 'Welcome Home.'"
Farrar's high school team is now practicing in advance of his senior year, where he says he'll play receiver as well as defensive back. The first scrimmage comes this weekend and soon, the season. He knows it won't be that long, though, before he's on the fields behind the McCue Center, readying himself for his first year in orange and blue.
"I feel relieved that I can focus on my high school team and I don't have to worry about so many officials and recruiting letters and all of the things that come with the recruiting process," he explained. "I'm very excited that I get to get on with my season and then after that I can put in the work and get ready for the next level."
Could Farrar be one of the many 2014 players that seem to be looking at early enrollment?
"It's a big thing that's on topic," he said. "I want to see how I feel but it's definitely something I'm thinking a lot about."
Either way, his experience over the last week has solidified for him just how right he was in becoming a Wahoo.
"Everyday," he said. "Every day since the decision I think about it. Honestly, every day. I've been receiving letters from Virginia for a while but it seems like since then I'm still getting letters from them. I've talked to Coach London the past three days in a row just about different things.
"Every day, I'm reminded that I made the right choice because to any other school, you could've just been a guy on the commitment list. I could've committed and they would've been excited and they'd be happy but content to just have another player on their list. That the communication hasn't stopped with UVa, that means a lot."
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