June 1, 2008

Scheelhaase ready for summer road show

There is good news for gas stations all over the Mid-South and Midwest.

The price of fuel might have more people than usual staying home and not driving to vacation destinations this summer, but Nathan Scheelhaase is planning to do his part to keep the economy bustling.

The four-star quarterback from Kansas City (Rockhurst), Mo., will be hopping in the family car with his parents Monday, embarking on a 10-school tour that will consume the better part of the next four weeks. First up for the 6-foot-3, 184-pound Scheelhaase is a trip to the one Southeastern Conference school he's considering, Ole Miss.

Scheelhaase will drive to Oxford, Miss., Monday and check out Ole Miss for a couple of days before leaving Wednesday for Oklahoma. Next week, Scheelhaase will travel to Nebraska, Missouri and Kansas. The third week will be spent touring Colorado, Iowa and Illinois, and he'll finish the his version of "Where In the World is Nathan Scheelhaase" with trips to Stanford and South Florida at the end of the month.

"I'll be ready to pick some favorites and cut some teams (after the month)," Scheelhaase said Sunday. "As far as a decision, hopefully I'll have a good feeling about a school, but I'm going to take my time and think things over."

The trip to Oxford is one Scheelhaase has been looking forward to. He's had a relationship with Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt and recruiting coordinator/cornerbacks coach Chris Vaughn for more than two years, dating back to their stay at Arkansas. When Nutt, Vaughn and Co., left Fayetteville for Ole Miss, Scheelhaase became an immediate priority. In fact, Scheelhaase was waiting at Rockhurst the first day Ole Miss coaches hit the road for the spring evaluation period.

"I've never been down to Oxford," Scheelhaase said. "Obviously, I have to feel comfortable with the campus and the town. I haven't met the new quarterbacks coach (Kent Austin). I'm looking forward to talking to him. Also it's important how I'm perceived there and how the visit goes in general.

"It's in the South, so it's different from Kansas City, where I've grown up. We're trying to take away any preconceived notions we have about any of the schools and get a feel for each university."

Scheelhaase said distance won't be an issue. His father, a former Iowa player, and his mother plan to move from Kansas City to the town where his new college home is located.

"That's an issue too, that they're comfortable with the community," Scheelhaase said. "That's something we'll look at."

In the end, Scheelhaase said, his decision will very likely be based on the gut feeling he gets at Ole Miss and the other nine schools on his summer visit docket.

"It will be the little things that make a difference," Scheelhaase said.

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