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Insider Recruiting Q&A - Oregon, FSU, & More
Oregon head coach Chip Kelly
Oregon head coach Chip Kelly
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Jan 30, 2011


Is Chip Kelly looking for a specific type of player to fit his offense? How much has Utah’s move to the Pac 12 helped? How is Jimbo Fisher different than Bobby Bowden? Are more elite WRs flocking to Oklahoma State? Is UCLA taking advantage of USC's problems? These questions and a lot more in Part Two of the key questions and insider answers for the 2011 recruiting season.


Recruiting 2011 - Key Questions

The Inside Info - Part Six

 
What's happening this recruiting season? Several Scout publishers provide their insider info on the key questions that matter to the real world of college football.

- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 1. How is Will Muschamp doing at Florida?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 2. Is Kelly getting the job done at ND?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 3. Is Auburn going after another Cam?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 4. Ohio St, Bama, and their new threats
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 5. Is Oklahoma still getting the top QBs?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 6. Who is Oregon going after?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 7. The Big 10 and Nebraska.

- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions
- Recruiting 2009 - The Key Questions

CFN Top Prospects for 2011
- No. 1 to 50 | No. 51 to 100 | No. 101 to 150
- No. 151 to 200No. 201 to 250 | No. 251 to 300
- Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Receivers
- Tight Ends | Off. Tackles | Guards & Centers 
- Def. Ends | Def. Tackles | Linebackers | Corners | Safeties 
- 2009 CFN Top 150 | 2010 CFN Top 200

Q: Is Chip Kelly looking for a specific type of player to fit his offense, or is he just going for the best players possible? Really, how much do the uniforms help in recruiting?


A; 1. Chip Kelly is looking for specific athletes that must have speed, length, correct attitude and a hard work ethic both on and off the field.

The Ducks philosophy is that players must buy into the Oregon program and be willing to put the team ahead of everything. The player must be willing to “Win The Day” and willing to compete for each position, on each practice snap. Kelly also extends that philosophy to the classroom as he expects his players to finish school and earn a degree.

Physically, Kelly wants players who can withstand the up-tempo offense. That means the offensive linemen may not be the heaviest, but must be flexible and have the endurance to get immediately get back to the line of scrimmage with no huddle and limited substitution. If the pace seems frantic in a game, it is even more so in practice.

Receivers must be able to block downfield. Running backs must be able to catch passes and obviously quarterbacks must be able to run as well as pass.

Defensively, the defensive line is more concerned with length so that the lineman is able to play two gaps. The Ducks want speed in linebackers and defensive backs.

2. Uniforms have been mentioned by players frequently as something they like. I don’t know if uniforms have ever been a deciding factor, but the colorful combinations have not hurt Oregon’s recruiting efforts.

3. The main areas the Ducks wanted to fill were (in this order)
a. offensive line
b. quarterback
c. defensive line
d. wide receiver

It appears the Ducks were successful in filling all the areas they needed. - From Stephen Summers, eDuck.com

Q: How much has Utah’s move to the Pac 12 helped? Are recruits now seeing this as more of a big-time program?

The move helped Utah immensely on the recruiting front. They've landed prospects that wouldn't have been realistic at this time a year ago, with running back Harvey Langi being the biggest of commits, beating out USC for his services. Nearly half of the committed players have said that Utah's invitation to the Pac 12 was highly instrumental in them choosing the Utes. While a lot of recruits did see Utah as one of the bigger non-BCS programs, the move has solidified that and moved them into the upper echelon as a possible destination. While it is starting to pay off with the 2011 class, the 2012 class is when we're going to see an even bigger effect, especially now that Utah has a name like Norm Chow to dangle in front of a recruit.

The main focus for 2011 hasn't really changed much from last year. The Ute coaches do as good a job as anyone in the country at finding hidden talent. Their philosophy of bringing in athletes that they can try out at multiple positions until the right spot is found has worked out well with three straight ten win seasons despite recruiting classes that weren't highly rated.

Going forward I expect them to be able to recruit to a position more now that they are gaining serious consideration from elite prospects, but still maintaining aspects of the 'find em and develop em' philosophy. While this class has been fairly balanced on each side of the ball, finding an impact running back has been a major need with Matt Asiata and Eddie Wide graduating and no real experience coming back in 2011. They've addressed that need with the highly-touted Langi already on campus and enrolled, JC speedster back John White already on campus, and the versatile and underrated Jarrell Oliver arriving in June.

With last year's true freshman Brian Blechen likely moving up to linebacker for the 2011, Utah will also be replacing their entire secondary. With three safety commits already on board, including JC transfer Keith McGill, and a few cornerbacks still strongly considering the Utes, the major areas of need have been taken care of. – From Brian Swinney, Utah.Scout.com

Q: How are things different at Florida State now that Jimbo Fisher has had a full offseason to recruit? How is his approach different than Bobby Bowden's?

A: Fisher hired a staff of not only excellent coaches, but excellent recruiters. In his first year as head coach, he showed that he is meticulously organized and his staff was on prospects early and often. That hard work looks like it will pay off with the best class signed at FSU in probably a decade (or more). Bobby Bowden, in his heyday, was big on closing strong on signing day, while Fisher wrapped up a large percentage of his class well before January. The main focus for Fisher was bringing in big bodies to fit his schemes. Looks like there will be at least 6 OL and 5 DL (perhaps 6) in the class. – Geoff Vogt, NoleDigest.com

Q: How has Oklahoma State’s success at wide receiver over the last few years helped when it comes to getting the top wideout talent? What is the recruiting pitch when going against Oklahoma?

A: It has become a line of succession from Adarius Bowman to Dez Bryant to Justin Blackmon, and there is no doubt the success of those receivers and, in particular, Bryant going in the first round and Blackmon winning the Biletnikoff and being mentioned as a first round draft prospect this off season before announcing he is coming back for another season has talented receivers turning their head and looking at Oklahoma State. In covering their recruiting I had several receivers say they were looking at Oklahoma State because of what the school had done for Bryant and Blackmon.

Head coach Mike Gundy and his staff are particular in what they are looking for and that is evidenced by the wide receivers in this class. They’re bringing in David Glidden out of Mustang, Okla. Mustang runs a spread offense almost identical to Oklahoma State and produced current OSU starting slot receiver Josh Cooper. Glidden is similar to Cooper and maybe even faster. His most amazing stat is on defense where he returned four of six interceptions for touchdowns.

The big, explosive type of receiver like Bowman, Bryant, and Blackmon in this class is likely Dallas (Lake Highlands), Texas product Desmond Roland, II. Roland is 6-2, 204 pounds and played running back in high school, but like Blackmon and Michael Crabtree at Texas Tech who played other positions, he is looked at as a big body and explosive wide receiver. The other two receivers in the class are Josh Stewart the number one target in high school to OSU quarterback recruit J.W. Walsh out of Denton (Guyer), Texas, and Arkansas speedster Isaac McCoy. You could say that Gundy and his staff use their imagination in looking for and finding receivers in different places and different positions.

It's really interesting in that the two schools did not go head to head much in recruiting this season. Both schools opted not to sign a lot of in-state players. It was in Texas where they went head to head the most. The pitch now is come to Oklahoma State and be a part of the first Cowboys Big 12 Champion and BCS Champion. In the past that was not a believable pitch, but now with the facilities and the success on the field, the only remaining step is to beat Oklahoma and win the Big 12 and go to the BCS.

The other huge pitch from Gundy is education. He promises each recruit's family he will do everything in his power to get their player a college degree. His discipline is toughest on class attendance, sitting in front in classes, tardies, study hall, and academic performance. The parents and relatives love it.

The main focus was really on defense and primarily, defensive tackle and linebacker. Defensive tackle has been a tough position for OSU to recruit to and they lose three linebackers in their two-deep last season, two of them starters. That is another reason that they picked up junior college players, one each at both those positions. On offense the focus was one quarterback (Walsh), one running back (All-American Herschel Sims of Abilene), and the receivers because of the need for so many in this style of offense. – From Robert Allen, GoPokes.com

Q: How much has the loss of Norm Chow helped/hurt UCLA? Is the coaching staff able to take advantage of the problems at USC?

A: I think Norm Chow leaving UCLA will definitely only help the program, internally and externally.

Internally, it was thought that Chow wasn't effective and UCLA needed a more dynamic offensive approach and attack; Mike Johnson can provide it. Externally, it helps the program's rep, appearing that Neuheisel is trying to do what it takes to be competitive, and that, and Johnson's recruiting ability, resonates with recruits and fans.

I think UCLA has already taken advantage of the NCAA issues with USC. UCLA beat out USC on a number of recruits in the 2010 recruiting class. On the field, the Bruins didn't take full advantage of USC's problem by going 4-8 this season. If they had come up with a successful season I think we would have really seen a huge advantage taken. But, given the 4-8, UCLA is still benefitting from USC's problems. For instance, they're getting an official visit from USC commit Jalen Grimble this weekend.

UCLA didn't have many scholarships to give, having loaded up with three top-ten recruiting classes the last three years. The make-or-break aspect of the 2011 class, then, was getting an elite quarterback prospect, which it did in Brett Hundley. With so much young depth on the roster, there really wasn't a particularly glaring position of need to fill with 2011. Getting some more good offensive line prospects was a priority, and it looks like they'll do that. It will be interesting to watch how Neuheisel, with two new coordinators on staff, finishes off the next week before signing day. He's closed out every recruiting season so far with a pretty big splash. – From Tracy Pierson, BruinReportOnline.com

- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 1. How is Will Muschamp doing at Florida?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 2. Is Kelly getting the job done at ND?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 3. Is Auburn going after another Cam?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 4. Ohio St, Bama, and their new threats
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 5. Is Oklahoma still getting the top QBs?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 6. Who is Oregon going after?
- Recruiting 2011 - The Key Questions, Part 7. The Big 10 and Nebraska. 

- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions
- Recruiting 2009 - The Key Questions

CFN Top Prospects for 2011
- No. 1 to 50 | No. 51 to 100 | No. 101 to 150
- No. 151 to 200No. 201 to 250 | No. 251 to 300
- Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Receivers
- Tight Ends | Off. Tackles | Guards & Centers 
- Def. Ends | Def. Tackles | Linebackers | Corners | Safeties 
- 2009 CFN Top 150 | 2010 CFN Top 200