Devon Rasmus never expected that he'd be one of the first calls for a Division I program on Sept. 1, the first day that college coaches could reach out to prospects from the Class of 2020.
Fresh off of making Florida history as part of the first public school to win a state championship, the Team 91 Florida 2020 midfielder had a strong summer, including playing well enough to earn MVP honors in the All-Star Game at the Baltimore Summer Kick-Off. Still, he didn't expect much activity on Sept. 1.
"I really wasn't expecting anyone to call the first day, but when Towson did, I was pretty stoked," Rasmus said. "I visited the school on my own this summer and really liked it. I knew that Bryce was going to go there if he got an offer because it was his top school, and I knew that I had the option to go with him if I got offered. Once I got offered, I had to say, 'yes.' You need that support and it starts you off on the right foot."
The phone call with Shawn Nadelen locked it up, but Rasmus' visit to Towson this summer is what really sold him on Towson. It doesn't hurt, either, that the Tigers are a CAA powerhouse and are constantly in the mix to be in the NCAA tournament. Two years ago, they reached the Final Four and have emerged as a consistent power in the game.
"The campus is very beautiful and it's a good area, close to Baltimore City," Rasmus said. "There's a lot of stuff to do around there. I don't know what I want to study yet, but maybe physical therapy."
Rasmus' playing style also fits right into Towson's wheelhouse. As a sophomore, he was the lone underclassman that started for Jupiter in its run to the state title. He paired 14 goals with seven assists, using a heavy outside shot and good shooting range to threaten defenses. Rasmus really made his bones on the other end of the field, though, emerging as a lockdown defender who could erase other teams' midfield scoring threats. It's something that a lot of midfielders shy away from, and it's a big reason why Rasmus excels so much at it.
"I like to play defense. It's a challenge and no one wants to do it, so it gives me a chance to be on the field more than other kids," Rasmus said. "This spring really helped me mature a lot and starting as a sophomore really helped me develop and handle pressure better. If you can play in the state championship game against older kids, you can play against kids your own age. It was exciting for us as a team, especially knowing that you can be at a public school and compete with private schools with kids from all over the area. It was a big deal."
"Devon is a throwback midfielder, and the new rules play right into his hands," coach Danny Loftus said. "He's really good across the board, does all of the little things right and plays great defense. In today's game, it's crucial to recruit guys who are athletes and can play both ways."
Playing for the same coaches year-round also helped Rasmus develop even further. Loftus and Nick O'Hara coached him at both Jupiter and for Team 91, and they were crucial in helping him continually develop his all-around game and blossom into a Division I prospect.
"I love all of my coaches," Rasmus said. "They have so much experience and they're really good guys, and they'll do everything for you. I just want to say thank you too all of my coaches and everyone who helped me."
"Devin is a great example of showing how hard work pays off," Loftus added. "I'm proud of him and happy for him, and he just followed the plan and trusted the process. If you do all the right things, you'll have opportunities."
Like playing Division I lacrosse with your best friend.