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Hoag to follow FHS-to-Wake Forest trek
Admiral lineman likes WFU program, academics

Michael Hoag is following Tyson Clabo’s football/education path — a talented Farragut High School offensive lineman choosing Wake Forest as his major college destination.

However, “It was nice to know that someone from Farragut had gone there before, but I didn’t really think about that coming into it,” the 6-foot-6, 285-pound FHS senior said of his verbal commitment in September to the suddenly successful Atlantic Division ACC champion Demon Deacons.

Meanwhile, Clabo’s path to success has extended into to the NFL after seemingly going nowhere — released four times by three different teams between 2004 and 2005.

The former All-ACC lineman and 2000 FHS graduate has become a starting guard for the Atlanta Falcons. (See related story beginning on page 13).

Hoag, a two-year starter on the FHS offensive line who said he bench presses 350 pounds, squats 500 and power cleans 350, said he’s thrilled to see Wake Forest having so much success in 2006.

“I love it, I watched the game last night, I was excited ... I think the program has just taken off,” Hoag said of WFU’s 38-24 win at Maryland Nov. 25 that gave the Demon Deacons a rare 10-win season and pulled them within one victory of the school’s second-ever ACC championship (versus Georgia Tech Saturday, Dec. 2).

In reference to WFU head coach Jim Grobe, “He came in and said, if I remember this right, he would have a winner in six years, and this is his sixth year,” the 17-year-old said. “And they’re all basically his recruits. I think he’s done a fabulous job, and I think he’ll continue doing a good job, too.

“Great coaches, football program’s going in the right direction. I just love the city [Winston-Salem] and the campus. And I saw the players, and they were all just real nice. It was a good fit.”

Currently holding a 3.65 grade point average after being named to the TSSAA Honor Roll as a junior, Hoag said he also chose Wake Forest because “the education I’ll get there is just awesome.” Also considering Missouri among other college scholarship offers, Hoag said he sought the advice of parents David and Becky Hoag before making his decision.

Hoag said he’s considering a communications major due to his interest in sports broadcasting.


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