The Massachusetts Minutemen added a big commitment to their 2016 recruiting class this past Friday as Sharif Saleem, a defensive end standing at 6'7" tall and tipping the scales at 250 pounds, has committed to UMass for the 2016 season. Saleem joins the Minutemen from Euclid High School in Cleveland, OH, and he was kind enough to speak with Hustle Belt about his commitment.
"UMass felt like home from the time I got there to the time I left!" Saleem told us. "And I loved the people and the players there. But what really sold me on UMass was the people and the community. I could see myself going there even if I didn't play football."
Saleem choose the Minutemen over offers from Kent State and Bowling Green, and was at one point committed to the Falcons in the spring before decommitting a few months ago. While there were some teams expressing interest in Saleem on the offensive side of the ball, UMass will be utilizing his talents on the defensive side.
"[UMass] sees me lining up in a 3-4, hand on the ground playing the strong side defensive end."
Saleem told us that he plans on being a stockbroker after football, and that he wants to study financial advising at UMass' prestigious Isenberg School of Management.
Saleem's high school teammate Anthony Johnson Jr. accompanied him on his official visit to UMass on the weekend of December 4th-6th and is also considering the Minutemen. When asked if he would try to convince Johnson Jr., a composite 3-star cornerback, to come to Amherst as well, Saleem said: "Of course I will that's my boy."
Saleem has a ton of potential and is a big get for the Minutemen as they look to fill out their 2016 class. He could be quite the force paired with some of the other young defensive linemen UMass has brought in over the past couple of seasons.
Check out Saleem's most recent highlights here, courtesy of Hudl: