CHULA VISTA, Calif. (BVM) – There’s one thing Chris Snyder Jr. will never cheat his teammates of: effort.
“Every play that I’m on the field, I’m going to give 100% whether we’re winning or losing; I’m going to give my all every single play,” Snyder Jr. said. “Sometimes I see some other players slacking or jogging their routes on some plays. But me, if I’m in, I’m going to give you my full effort every single play.
“That’s what’s going to separate me.”
The Mater Dei Catholic junior has been making high-effort plays since he arrived at the high school level, tallying 36 tackles and two interceptions as a freshman. Snyder Jr. has mainly played cornerback, but the three-star athlete has made plays for the Crusaders at running back, receiver and even some wildcat quarterback.
— Chris “Boom” Snyder Jr (@chr1zzss) March 31, 2021
This ability to impact the game at multiple positions is something Mater Dei Catholic offensive coordinator Verlain Betofe has encouraged.
“I can really play anywhere my coach needs me,” Snyder Jr. said. “With Coach V (Verlain), we have a good connection so he just throws me in anywhere because he trusts me and we have that bond to where he knows that I can make plays and what I’m capable of. So he puts me in position to make plays and that’s why we get along so well.”
Position versatility is something that college coaches covet nowadays, so it’s no surprise that Snyder Jr. is one of the most sought-after 2023 recruits in the state of California. The state’s No. 35 overall recruit in the Class of 2023 already holds offers from Colorado, Oregon, Oregon State, Pitt and others. Snyder Jr. even picked up an offer from in-state Cal just last week.
At 6-feet, 180 pounds, Snyder Jr. doesn’t have the ideal size or length for a Division I corner. But what he does have is the ability to be used on both sides of the ball to be a real game-changer.
“Especially since I’m not one of those 6-foot-3, lengthy corners, position versatility can help me get on the field at other positions if someone is ahead of me,” Snyder Jr. said. “It’s going to help me get on the field more.”
Snyder Jr. said he doesn’t have any early favorites on the recruiting trail just yet but Kansas, Oregon State and Cal have shown a lot of love. Ultimately, Snyder Jr.’s college decision will be made by which program makes him feel the most at home.
“I’m definitely interested in going somewhere that feels like home but also somewhere I’ll be able to play or at least have a spot to compete and get on the field,” Snyder Jr. said. “That’s just my main thing: I want to play wherever I’m going to commit. It doesn’t have to be the first year but I want to have a spot to be able to compete for a top position.”
Snyder Jr. has plenty of time to make that decision, and even more to accomplish in his final two seasons at Mater Dei Catholic.
The Crusaders are 2-0 early on this fall after putting up 53 points in each of their first two games of the season. Dominance has become the norm at Mater Dei Catholic as the program consistently has one of the most talented rosters in the state. Fellow three-star recruits Tre Edwards (USC commit) and Jeremiah McClure (undecided) join Snyder Jr. as a feared Class of 2023 trio.
For Snyder Jr., being able to battle and compete with future college football stars every day in practice is invaluable.
“It means a lot,” Snyder Jr. said. “It definitely brings the best out of me, competing with the best of the best. We have a bunch of dogs and us competing against each other every day is just making us better because we’re not going to compete against another team that has as many of the top players in the county as we do.”
With immense talent comes lofty expectations, but good thing Snyder Jr. and the Crusaders welcome them. Currently ranked No. 6 in MaxPreps’ CIF San Diego Section rankings, Snyder Jr. doesn’t envision anyone stopping his squad.
“It’s only us; no one is going to stop us but us,” Snyder Jr. said. “We can only beat ourselves and that’s what it’s been these past years. Each game we’ve lost, it’s us beating ourselves or us making simple mistakes.
“We have so much talent on the field everywhere. Everyone can make plays and we have a lot of depth. If we can eliminate the mistakes, then I don’t see anyone stopping us.”