BRANDON Pickersgill is excited to set an example to the young players looking to break into the Bulls side this season.

The full back may only be 22 himself but has already become an established first-team squad member and wants to help youngsters make the grade in similar fashion.

Pickersgill lavished praise on the club's academy, saying that with the likes of himself, Ross Oakes and Liam Kirk, it shows there is a clear pathway to the senior side.

He said he feels a responsibility to help young players such as Tom Doyle, Alix Stephenson and Evan Hodgson - who may have a significant role given the smaller size of Bulls squad next season - step up.

Pickersgill said: "There's a lot of young players coming up through the system now and they'll be training with us a lot more than last year. They'll be looking at us boys who've played regularly in the Championship for guidance and how to manage the game.

"There's a lot more responsibility on the players that have stayed now because we know what this club means and how tough it is in the Championship.

"We've got to set the standards high for the young boys coming in and I'm looking forward to seeing them come through, so it's exciting on that side of the scale."

He added: "It's hard to explain but it's like you're looking in the past and seeing a bit of yourself in these players.

"A lot of young lads are shy coming up, as I was, and you just don't want to make a bad first impression. So hopefully, we can bring them out of their shell.

"Seeing young boys come through is always a good thing because I was in their footsteps. There's people like Ross Oakes and Liam Kirk too, who I came up through the system with and are thankfully still here, so it shows there's a pathway for those young players.

"Hopefully a few of them can burst on the scene and really make a name for themselves."

Bradford-born Pickersgill admitted it was a no-brainer for him to stay, although said he will miss close friends like Ethan Ryan, Elliot Minchella and Joe Keyes, who have all departed for Hull KR.

He said: "It means everything (to play here). When I met the new consortium, it was positive and I thought 'there's no need to go looking elsewhere' because I want to stay here and play for Bradford.

"A few players have left now which is fair enough. It is sad because I got really close with a lot of them. I played alongside them for four or five years and they've become like my best mates. I still speak to them regularly.

"But in professional sport, people move on, that's just part and parcel of the job. There'll be new players coming in and I'm sure I'll build new friendships with them."