Camp Hill (Pa.) Cedar Cliff tight end Adam Breneman took a big step in the right direction this past weekend after rehabbing two torn labrums that required two separate surgeries in late November and early January.
Unlike the majority of prospects that attended the Baltimore Nike camp, Breneman's goal wasn't solely on gaining exposure, but rather to see where he currently stands after a winter schedule that held him back a bit when it came to football related activities.
"This was my first time really getting on the field, really doing any football related stuff since my surgery," Breneman said. "But yeah, it was really good getting out there with some of the top prospects in the area. I didn't do any contact stuff, my doctor advised me not to do any one-on-ones or seven-on-sevens, but I ran routes, did some position drills, caught some balls and I feel I did pretty well, so it was definitely a good day and of course, I was reping Penn State a bit as well, so all-in-all, it was a pretty good day."
Whenever you're the No.1 tight end in the country, however, it's hard not to gain exposure when all eyes are on you, and that's exactly what ended up happening, as Breneman earned a bid to The Opening, a four day combine at Nike World Headquarters in Oregon that allows 150 of the nation's top prospects to compete against each other in a variety of competitions.
Add in his invite to the Rivals100 Five-Star Challenge from June 22-24 in Atlanta, and Breneman will have a great shot at earning that fifth star before his season starts.
"My plans for the summer so far start with the Rivals100 challenge in late June," Breneman said. "I was actually just talking to [Christian] Hackenberg about it and we're really looking forward to working together down there, it should be a lot of fun playing on the same seven-on-seven team with him.
"The Opening is in the beginning of July, so I'll be at that and then possibly Gridiron Kings, which is that seven-on-seven tournament in Florida right before the season starts. I got invited to Gridiron Kings after this weekend, so I may go down there for that, I just have to see my schedule a bit more, I don't want to do anything that would hold back my team (Cedar Cliff) a few weeks before preseason practice."
With such a busy schedule ahead of him, Breneman will be working extra hard over the next six weeks to not only make sure he's ready to perform on the big stage when it comes to combines, but also make sure he's ready to go this season, as Cedar Cliff looks to get back to the Mid-Penn playoffs.
"I'm pretty much all done with the rehab from my surgery. I've been lifting for a few weeks now and I weighed in at 230 over the weekend, so I've put on a bit of weight and I'm going to just keep trying to put on good weight, muscle weight, while also working on my speed, agility and all the conditioning that I need to catch up on."
With the extra downtime, it's been pretty well documented that Breneman has become the Class of 2013's ring leader when it comes to recruiting fellow prospects, but Breneman's not just reaching out to guys like Dorian Johnson and David Williams, as he's become friends with plenty of prospects throughout the past year.
"I stay in touch with Ryan Switzer, I still talk to him a bit. I don't bug him, we've become pretty good friends over the year, so I just stay in touch with him because anything can happen. I've been talking to Michael Deeb a bit, the linebacker from Florida. I also talked to Devin Butler a bit this weekend. I know he's committed to Notre Dame, but its the same thing as Switzer, anything can happen, so why not stay in touch."
So when might Breneman make it back to Happy Valley?
"I'm going to be coming back up in the beginning of June. I'm very close with my grandparents and they really wanted to see things, maybe meet Coach O'Brien, so I'm going to bring them up to do that not that long after school lets out.
"I may come up for camp as well, I was thinking about possibly coming up for a day just to work with the coaches a bit, it's always a good thing to get a little work in with them, but I haven't decided on exactly what I want to do yet."
Cedar Cliff will begin a two-week mini camp next week. In preparation for that, Breneman's been working with close friend and 2014 QB prospect Andrew Ford on his own time, running routes roughly three times a week.