Carroll’s football history has a way of recruiting for itself.
For CMR standout Xavier Pace, that prestige and Carroll’s persistence in pursuing the defensive back gave the Saints the advantage they needed.
Pace announced his commitment to Carroll on Thursday afternoon as many have recently, via social media, tweeting his decision. Pace said the coaching staff, Carroll’s history -- the last few seasons not withstanding -- and fellow CMR Rustlers on the Saints’ roster helped him make his choice.
Pace joinsex-Rustler Payton Sexe, who will be a junior linebacker after having his sophomore campaign cut short due to injury. Eric Dawson, who will be a senior tight end, also dealt with injuries this season. Both are expected to make large impacts for the Saints this upcoming season.
“What I foresee is just a great five years to be a part of this program,” Pace told the Independent Record. “I think with this new recruiting class we have guys on both sides of the ball that make big plays and want to win championships.”
Pace said Carroll coaches showed interest in him in June and that ultimately it was that commitment to his recruitment that gave Carroll the edge over other Frontier Conference schools that had shown interest, such as Rocky Mountain College and Montana Tech.
“Their perseverance and hard work trying to get me on the team is what tipped in their favor,” Pace said.
Carroll’s staff liked that Pace played both sides of the ball and displayed a natural leadership, he said.
“The coaches love that I play on the ball when it's in the air and they like my speed and grit,” Pace said. “They also really appreciate my character and leadership on the field.”
Pace was named an honorable mention All-State corner in 2015.
Pace joins a budding recruiting class for the Saints. The Saints locked up two versatile players earlier in Twin Bridges’ Wesley Harshbarger and Lewiston, Idaho’s Dustin McLean. Also this week, Helena High standout running back Ryan Arntson signed with Carroll.