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November 9, 2012

Army Bowl invite an 'amazing feeling' for Hatcher

MORE: U.S. Army All-American Bowl

It wasn't until last month that Louisville (Ky.) Trinity defensive end Jason Hatcher found out that he had earned a spot in the U.S. Army All-American Game. But today, when he put on his jersey for the first time at a ceremony at his school, there was no question in his mind that it was worth the wait.

"It was an amazing feeling," said Hatcher, who was presented his jersey alongside his friend and teammate James Quick. "I've been working hard for a long time to get to this moment."

"I'm so thankful for the support of my family because I wouldn't have been able to do it with them," he said. "Also my coaches for making the extra efforts to make sure I was doing what I needed to do."

For the USC commit, getting to accept the jersey with Quick made the moment that much sweeter.

"James and I have been playing together for years," Hatcher said. "We've known each other for a long time and it's amazing to share it with him."

Hatcher watched last year's game from the sidelines after competing in the underclassman combine. He said it was at that moment that he realized he wanted to be on the field following his senior season.

"I knew if I got the opportunity that it would be the game I would play in," he said. "I had other offers but I chose this game because of the tradition it has."

Hatcher, who has verbally committed to USC, said being one of the few players from Kentucky in recent years to earn a spot adds to thehonor.

"I just want to get down there and compete and represent my state," he said. "It's an honor to be from Kentucky and get selected."

As far as recruiting, Hatcher said he's still committed to the Trojans but will be taking all five of his official visits.

"I'm going to take officials to Florida, Tennessee, Miami and USC," he said. "I'm not sure about the last one but I'm going to start to plan things early next week."

Hatcher is one of a number of USC commits to participate in the game. He's expected to see many of the faces when he takes his official visit in January, but he's looking for to reconnecting with his future teammates in San Antonio.

"It's going to be the first time I'm with all those guys since I was in California in January," he said. "It's going to be nice to see everyone again."


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