Olsen signs with Naval Academy

Perry Olsen signs an NCAA Division I letter-of-intent with the Naval Academy on Wednesday. Watching him sign are from left, his mother Carrie Shipley, Owen Olsen, father Dane Olsen, stepmother Andrea Olsen and grandparents Joan and Ray Olsen. Olsen received the offer this past spring and signed on the first early signing date set by the NCAA. Photo by Chuck Reherman

By Chuck Reherman, Sports Editor – Perry Olsen wasn’t sure how we wanted to take the next step of his football or personal career until the Navy came calling.
After doing some “homework,” the Yukon senior now knows and will get that chance to accomplish both at the collegiate level.
Olsen signed an NCAA Division I letter-of-intent Wednesday to attend the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., with members of his family, team, friends and high school coaches looking on.
This is the first early signing date for football. The normal signing date is in February, but the NCAA has now allowed for an early signing date as well. Olsen, as well as players from all over the country and have opted to sign with their chosen school on this early signing.
“I hadn’t thought about it until they (Navy) started recruited me,” Olsen said. “I did my research and honestly fell in love and that was all she wrote. “I am very excited to have this over with and know exactly what I am doing for the rest of my life,” Olsen said. “The fact I can get it out of the way now and focus on finishing up school, graduate and get on.
“They have a great football team and all, but it was everything outside of football,” he said. “I wasn’t too concerned with football when I made my decision, I wanted to have a career when I graduated and that was really important. Football is going to end some day and all the benefits and things played a huge role into it.
“As far as what I am planning to do in the military, I haven’t made up my mind yet, I do have a couple of years to think about it. I would like to do something extravagant to have fun.”
Olsen will actually spend his first year in a naval prep school in Rhode Island before moving on to the Naval Academy. It is a 10-month program and then he will receive is appointment to the academy.
“It is different for football players at the academy,” Olsen said. “The fact that I am going to the prep school first, I don’t to have the appointment until next year and they will help me out with that.
“It is a chance for me to get bigger and stronger for football and help me out academically. It is just like being a red shirt and I will have four years of eligibility.”
The Navy had originally looked at him as a linebacker during his junior season at Southmoore High School. But, once they saw him at quarterback, the attention was shifted to offense.
“They recruited me initially for linebacker, then saw me run and throw the ball and took a huge leap of faith and offered me at quarterback, so they did. It is kind of crazy of how things turned out,” he said.
“I do know the system that they run because we ran it here,” He said.
“I get to get a head start and coach (Jeremy) Reed does a great job.”
And, Olsen shined at quarterback, leading the Millers in rushing with 1,039 yards and 15 touchdowns. He also passed for 504 yards and five more touchdowns.
He was named to the All-District and All-Conference teams as well.
“This is much larger than football for Perry,” Reed said. “When you sign with an Academy, it is a life decision and not a football decision. It takes a special kid to do that and he definitely fits the criteria you look for to go be an academy kid and luckily, he gets to play football while doing it.
“I got to talk with about four of their assistant coaches and it is going to be a great deal for him,” he said. “He has a great opportunity to set himself up for life being in the Naval Academy.”