Governor Livingston sophomore Compton will be headed south in 3 years; Standout switch-hitting 3B selects ACC power Georgia Tech as his college destination

Batted .364 as a freshman to help lead Highlanders to their first Union County Tournament championship

The sport of baseball has a fluidity to it at times where one thing leads to another.
Governor Livingston sophomore switch-hitting standout third baseman Drew Compton gives Georgia Tech a verbal commitment on Sept. 25. A little more than two years from now – in November of 2018 – Compton will sign his letter-of-intent to attend one of the finest collegiate baseball schools in the country.
Here’s a brief synopsis of how Compton came to make his decision:
The Mountainside resident competed in a showcase event held in Georgia in July, attracting the attention of several different college scouts.
In addition, GL head coach Chris Roof reached out to Georgia Tech in early August. With the aid of contacts Roof was able to speak with Georgia Tech assistant coach Bryan Prince.
“He was just really an awesome guy to talk to,” Roof said.
Roof then sent Prince a video of Compton from his freshman season at GL, where Compton and teammate Dan Baroff hit back-to-back home runs in an Autism Awareness game against J.P. Stevens at North Brunswick. Roof had previously sent the same video to other prominent Division 1 programs such as Maryland, Vanderbilt, Oklahoma State and Michigan.
Compton then went out and took an unofficial visit to Georgia Tech in early September.
After the school nicknamed the Yellow Jackets liked what they saw in the young man in person – including the scouting notes and video that were taken into consideration – Georgia Tech came in with a significant offer that primarily pitchers – not positional players – receive.
Compton, who he himself really liked what he saw when he visited the Georgia Tech campus in Atlanta, then let the Atlantic Coast Conference school know that’s where he wants to play his college ball in three years.
“Georgia Tech has a really good history of major leaguers (Nomar Garciaparra and Mark Texeiera to name a few), the ACC is one of the best and it just seemed right,” Compton said.
The 6-2, 175 pound Compton was recruited as a third baseman or corner infielder, which are the positions he plays at GL.
“Coach Roof contacted Coach Prince and I went down there really connected,” Compton said. “In making my final decision I trusted coaches Roof and (Dan) Mondelli (GL assistant).
Mondelli – who Roof said is the best infield coach he’s ever been associated with – worked on Compton’s defense with him this summer.
Compton was also able to speak with Westfield 2011 graduate A.J. Murray, who played at Georgia Tech from 2012-2015 and is now playing Single A ball in the Minnesota Twins organization. Murray played in the same summer competition in Georgia that Compton did back in 2010.
“We had a long phone conversation about Georgia Tech that was very helpful,” Compton said.
“There were three reasons why Drew chose Georgia Tech,” Roof said. “Academics, playing in the ACC and the fact that he wanted to go away to school.”
Compton is the second GL player in two years to give a verbal commitment after his freshman season. Dan Serretti, GL’s shortstop as a freshman on its 2015 Group 2 state championship squad, is committed to St. John’s.
“With college baseball recruiting now, if colleges see a superior kid they will recruit him right away,” Roof said. “It’s sort of a building trend.”
“Nowadays the recruiting process is quicker,” Compton said. “Coach Roof put my name out there. I felt I had to do it now (making the verbal commitment) as long as I was comfortable with my decision.”
Compton also took an unofficial visit to Oklahoma State after seeing Georgia Tech.
“Oklahoma State also made a really good offer, but Georgia Teach is easier to get to and it’s the ACC,” Compton said.
When the 2016 high school baseball practice season began in early March, Compton – still 14 at the time – hoped to make a good first impression.
Nine months after attending GL’s 2015 Group 2 state championship baseball win over Bernards at Toms River South High School, Compton found himself competing on the hill at Berkeley Heights for the first time.
“My first goal was to make the varsity team.” Compton said. “I played in one JV scrimmage and then started practicing with the varsity.”
“We thought he had a strong opportunity to play varsity baseball,” Roof said. “After one scrimmage, the JV coach (Sam Politan) sent him to us. He said that on the JV he was a man among boys.”
After his very abbreviated stint with the JV squad, Compton was quickly elevated to varsity status.
On the 2nd of April, Compton – who just turned 15 on March 25 – was inserted in the starting lineup for the first time against visiting Kinnelon in GL’s second game of the season. Compton produced right away in a crazy game that took two days to complete, with GL eventually winning eight days later by the score of 11-10 in eight innings. On the first day the game was played – it was halted because of darkness – Kinnelon came back from an early 10-0 deficit to tie the game at 10-10.
“It was a single to left (between third base and shortstop) with the bases loaded,” Compton recalled of his first hit that drove in one run.
Playing third base and now batting third in the Highlander lineup, the switch-hitting Compton proved to be a tough out at the plate and helped fortify a young GL lineup that was winning games ahead of its pace.
In May, Compton’s performance at the hot corner and at the plate helped GL capture the program’s first Union County Tournament championship as the third-seeded Highlanders – in back-to-back weekend days at Kean University – took out second-seeded Westfield 4-3 in nine innings in the semifinals and then top-seeded Scotch Plains 3-2 in the final after previously going 0-4 against those teams in division play and, in the process, getting outscored 39-8.
GL was previously 0-5 in the UCT final and 0-4 under Roof, including losses in the 2014 and 2015 title games.
“It was awesome to be a part of GL history when we won the county championship,” Compton said. “We were really highly-motivated and those games were really intense.”
As May concluded and GL was eliminated from the North 2, Group 3 playoffs, the Highlanders ended up producing an unexpected, highly-successful 21-10 season.
Compton’s numbers for a freshman were comparable to say the least. He batted .364, with 32 hits, 19 RBI, 21 runs, six doubles, 15 walks and an even-more-impressive on-base percentage of .462.
“I’ve always been very comfortable at the plate and very confident,” Compton said. “My No. 1 goal is to just try to contribute to help the team win.”
As June turned into July, Compton took his game south as a member of the Middlesex-based Full Count Baseball and Softball Training Academy’s 16-and-under team.
In a one-week Perfect Game Showcase competition held in Emerson, Ga. at LakePoint – featuring scout-worthy competition across multiple scholarship-based sports – Compton batted 9-for-20 in a six-game stretch and caught the eye of more than one college onlooker.
“It was more motivating,” Compton said. “I loved playing in Georgia.”
Roof said that Compton also had an unofficial visit at Rutgers.
“We thought that this would happen for him a year from now,”
Roof said. “The plan was to get him on the radar this year.”
“This is a big weight off my shoulders,” Compton said. “I will still be working twice as hard every day to continue to get better.”

PHOTO COURTESY OF CHRIS ROOF - GL switch-hitter Drew Compton, batting left-handed above, is pictured below with, at his right, GL assistant coach Dan Mondelli and, at his left, Georgia Tech assistant coach Bryan Prince.
PHOTO COURTESY OF CHRIS ROOF – GL switch-hitter Drew Compton, batting left-handed above, is pictured below with, at his right, GL assistant coach Dan Mondelli and, at his left, Georgia Tech assistant coach Bryan Prince.
PHOTO COURTESY OF CHRIS ROOF - Drew  Compton batted .364 for Governor Livingston this past spring, batting third in the lineup. The freshman banged out 32 hits.
Compton batted .364 for Governor Livingston this past spring, batting third in the lineup. The freshman banged out 32 hits.