Cade Palmer will have some big news for his older brother when he finishes basic training.
Cade, a rising senior at The Classical Academy, committed to Air Force football on Saturday, where he’ll join Cole, who will be a freshman for the Falcons this season. Cole is in the final stages of basic training, so he has been out of communication for the past six weeks.
“I haven’t been able to talk to him,” Cade said. “So he doesn’t know I’m committed yet.”
Cade said it is likely that he will enter the academy via the prep school, so the Palmer brothers — Cole a 6-foot-5, 255-pound outside linebacker, and Cade, a 6-2, 195-pound fullback — will play together for two years. If Cade were to be able to enter directly, the brothers, two years apart, could join forces for three years.
“That would be ideal, but I think I just have to get my grades up a bit,” said Cade, who held an offer from Michigan State and has spent the past two months at camps conducted by Rivals, Missouri, Iowa State, Wyoming and Air Force.
Cade ran for 1,122 yards and 18 touchdowns in six games during a spring season for TCA in 2021, including 346 yards on 21 carries in the 3A championship game against Rifle that the Titans dropped 35-34 in Pueblo.
With Palmer playing a key role as tailback and safety, TCA went 6-1 and outscored opponents 324-67. He’ll now have the quick turnaround of playing a fall season after a summer complicated by so many camps.
“I feel like I’m definitely still in shape,” said Palmer, who recorded a personal-best 4.55-second 40-yard dash at the Missouri camp. “I’m excited about it. I think it’s good that we don’t have a wait and we can kind of carry the momentum we had from the spring into this year.”
The family had learned tough lessons from the recruitment process, as Cole had committed to UNLV prior to his senior season only to see the offer pulled when the Rebels fired their coach. Air Force had offered days before signing day, forcing Cole into a quick decision.
For Cade, who visited Air Force three times this summer, the timeline of his decision was in his hands and he saw no reason to drag out the process when he knew where he wanted to go. And as evidenced by the fact that he couldn’t even consult with Cole before making the final decision, he said his decision was independent of his brother – but that was certainly an enticing factor.
“I think it could have materialized regardless, but Cole going there probably put me on their radar a little bit,” Cade said. “It’s about a 10-miute drive from my house. I can see it from my house. Cole’s there. I really like coach (Tim) Horton, the running backs coach, and I just felt really at peace about it.”