Rising star Adam Brook has become the latest academy graduate to sign a full-time professional contract with the Bulls.
The Halifax-born scrum half, a regular for the under-19s, has penned a two-year deal that will keep him at the club until the end of 2016.
He is now aiming to make his first-team debut for Francis Cummins’ senior side and follow in the recent footsteps of Sam Bates, Nathan Conroy, Oliver Roberts and Sam Wood.
“I’m absolutely over the moon to sign a full-time contract with the Bulls – it’s a dream come true,” said the 19-year-old, who played in the pre-season friendlies against Hull FC and Dewsbury.
“Since the age of six, when I first started playing rugby league, my dream was to turn professional at Super League level.
“I was given a taste of first-team action earlier this year and I have been the 18th man on a couple of occasions since.
“Once you get a feel of life at the top of the sport, you just want more and more.”
Though operating as a part-time player this year, Brook has been plying his trade alongside the full-time members of Cummins’ squad.
“I have been here since the age of 14 and had little hesitation in agreeing a new contract with the club,” he said.
“I am very happy here and am really looking forward to what lies ahead.
“I will be too old to play for the under-19s next season, so that means I will get a full pre-season training in with the first team.
“That in itself could be crucial as I look to get more size on me and improve all aspects of my game.”
Head of youth Richard Tunningley, who also acts as the club’s under-19s head coach, added: “Adam's new deal is thoroughly deserved, he has worked very, very hard to earn it.
“He was given an opportunity to do further training last year and grasped the opportunity with both hands.
“Since Christmas, despite being a part-time member of the squad, he has trained full-time with the AASE team and first team.
“Adam has made some huge sacrifices, with the great support of his family, and his efforts have paid off.
“We have seen something in him and believe he could do well in the sport. He certainly has the correct ingredients when it comes to potential and personal qualities.”
Cummins, meanwhile, has recalled Adam O’Brien to his squad for tomorrow’s Challenge Cup semi-final to replace Antonio Kaufusi.
The Huddersfield prop’s four-match loan ended after last week’s win over Wakefield and Cummins is aiming to extend it, although he was cup-tied this weekend anyway.
The Bulls coach left O’Brien, Jamie Foster and Joe Arundel out of the side which beat Wakefield but he said: “Every one of them, to a man, took it really well.
“Foz has got competition in his position now and this is Adam’s first year of playing every week, so I just felt he needed a week or two off and then he’ll be ready to go again.
“Joe is still bedding in and has had a hand injury – but we have to pick on form and weigh everything up.
“If someone is not quite there, then the lad who missed out will be back in and I’ve tried to be as honest as I can. I’ve been in that position as a player myself.”
Cummins was this week tipped as a leading contender for the Super League coach of the year award by Warrington counterpart Tony Smith.
The two will cross swords tomorrow and Cummins said: “It’s certainly been a funny old start to my career but one day it’s going to pay me back.
“I’ll have that much experience of adversity that everything else will be plain sailing.
“Tony has done a lot for me and gave me my first proper job in coaching at Leeds when I got injured.
“I owe him a lot and I still chat to him – only on certain things and I won’t be chatting to him this week – but I’m able to bounce ideas off him and pick his brains, which is massive in any sport.
“Ultimately you are competing but there are certain things I can ask him about and others that I wouldn’t.
“That’s the same with Brian Mac (McDermott) and other coaches I have good relationships with.”
The Bulls have got a massive Super League game at Salford a week on Sunday but Cummins insisted: “It’s too big to be thinking about Salford this weekend because that’s when you get embarrassed.
“It would be remarkable to stay up and reach Wembley but obviously the main thing is to be in Super League at the end of the year.
“But you’ve always got to have that dream and stranger things have happened.
“We’ve got to be confident about us improving and, now we’ve got people back, it makes things easier.”