Senior Signing Spotlight: Colby Dickie
Perry WR Dickie looks to keep winning at CSU-Pueblo
This is No. 7 in a month-long series of profiles of Arizona high school seniors that signed with four-year colleges. Here's the full list (currently totaling 280) of players from within the state moving on to the next level.
In the past three seasons, Perry has turned around its fortunes going from a team that struggled to post a winning record (11-21 from 2013-2015) to being on the cusp of a championship (34-7 from 2016-2018). Its offense, which plays fast, averaged more than 47 points per game last year. While there have been a pair of Purdys at quarterback (Brock and Chubba), the consistent piece of the offense has been wide receiver Colby Dickie.
The numbers support it. Dickie has at least 60 receptions in each of his three varsity seasons (a career-best 78 as a senior), more than 1,000 yards each year, and a total of 38 touchdown catches (17 last season).
Dickie was named to the All-State 6A team from the AIA and also the First Team at wide receiver for 6A by Arizona Varsity.
Surprisingly, despite posting those gaudy numbers at the state's highest level, he had little recruiting interest gaining offers from Stetson (Fla.) and CSU-Pueblo. Dickie felt Pueblo gave him the best opportunity to do what he's always wanted to do - play college football.
"CSU-Pueblo has an incredible coaching staff," Dickie said in an e-mail interview. "The offensive coordinator taught me a few things within the 10 minutes we had together on my visit, so I can only imagine how he can improve my game within the next four years."
In addition to the facilities the campus has, the business program attracts Dickie as well. It is in that area where he plans to major.
As far as the turnaround at Perry goes, Dickie attributes it to the strong brotherhood among the players.
"The bond that was built between the guys I met in our first year on our freshman team and even to the upperclassmen, we built something special because we were all in it together," Dickie said. "Talent wasn't the only thing that brought us to the state championship back to back. It was the realization that we had that talent and we used it in the right way."
On the field, Dickie said his greatest high school accomplishment was helping to create that winning atmosphere and setting the bar high for future classes of Pumas. Away from the game, it's the friendships that were made that will last a lifetime.
One of the things we haven't mentioned yet is Dickie's size. He stands 5-9 and weighs 175 pounds. While it's likely that was a barrier that caused some of the bigger schools to pass on him, it didn't go unnoticed by his family and him that the MVP of this month's Super Bowl (Julian Edelman) is just one inch taller.
Dickie said the long wait for offers (his first one came in August and the CSU-Pueblo one was in December) made remaining patient one of the most difficult things to do in his life.
"I felt like I had this ability to take me to a Division I program, but it never happened that way," Dickie said. "I'm a huge believer in 'Everything happens for a reason'. The opportunity I have to go play at Pueblo feels 100 percent like the right decision.
CSU-Pueblo, a Division II school that plays in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, had a very successful recruiting year in Arizona. The ThunderWolves signed 13 players from the state (12 seniors and one juco). Last season, CSU-Pueblo finished 11-2 (9-1 in RMAC play) and advanced to the second round of the playoffs. The Pack shared the conference title with Colorado School of Mines and has claimed (or shared) the league's crown in seven of the past eight years. In the final D-II rankings by the American Football Coaches Association, the team was ranked No. 8.
In addition to football, Dickie ran track last year competing in the 100 and 200-meter races as well as the relays for both distances.
He feels his journey through the recruiting process can set an example for future athletes who feel that they have made accomplishments on the field, but are struggling to get that coveted attention.
"If there is one thing I can tell athletes, it's to be patient," Dickie said. "The right thing will happen no matter what, and you'll always find the right home."