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2008 MAC Recruiting - What It All Means
Toledo WR Sam Gaymon
Toledo WR Sam Gaymon
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Feb 12, 2008


How does the 2008 MAC recruiting class really affect the college football world?

Recruiting 2008 ... MAC
Ranking the MAC classes


East  Akron | Bowling Green | Buffalo | Kent St | Miami Univ. | Ohio | Temple
West  Ball St | Central Mich | Eastern Mich | No Illinois | Toledo | West Mich

- 2007 MAC Recruiting Rankings
- 2006 MAC Recruiting Rankings


1. Temple
The class is heavy on ... Receivers, running backs, and offensive guards. With four running backs, five receivers, and four very good guards, the Owl offense, that loaded up last year with young prospects, has even more options to choose from. Ahkeem Smith and Malcolm Williams add a ton of speed and flash to the backfield, while Vaughn Carraway should quickly become one of the MAC's best receivers. Guard Steve Caputo was good enough to go to a much bigger program.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... LB Adrian Robinson
The player you might care about this year ... DE Josh Williams
What it all means to the real world of college football ... It's not quite comparable to what Greg Schiano did to revive Rutgers, but the last two recruiting classes brought in by Al Golden has loaded up the program with more talent than anyone else in the MAC by far. However, Golden is quickly becoming a hot property and might not be around when this class is out of eligibility.

2. Central Michigan
The class is heavy on ... Defensive ends. You can't just fill in the blanks in one year hoping for things to change, but head coach Butch Jones tried to beef up the woeful defense with five pass rushers for the line, led by Steve Winston, and five defensive backs. There's not any sure-thing talent coming in, but the corners, particularly Yvener Lisca, can move.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... LB Armond Staten
The player you might care about this year ... RB Jahleel Addae
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Last year's recruiting class was a disaster because of the coaching chance, and now things bounced back nicely. Jones didn't pull in a class like Temple's but there's a bulk of newcomers to form the nucleus of the next few seasons. Jones is a hot commodity and will likely be coaching somewhere else in a few years, but the cupboard will be stocked for the next head man.

3. Toledo
The class is heavy on ... Safeties. The Rocket secondary was the biggest target with seven defensive backs coming in with five projected safeties. The combination of Jermaine Robinson and Isaiah Ballard will eventually be the starting safety combination, while corner Kenny Veal has the potential to be the team's lockdown corner for a long time. The defensive front also got help with five linemen coming in led by JUCO transfer Albertson Alexandre on the end.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... WR Sam Gaymon
The player you might care about this year ... DE Albertson Alexandre
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Last year's class brought in a slew of top-flight talents, but no depth. This year's class is just the opposite even though it has a smattering of stars here and there. More than anything else, there are options to challenge for starting jobs. The Rockets have good quarterbacks, but JUCO transfer Alex Pettee isn't coming in to sit on the bench. Ty Jones comes in from Tampa to potentially be the new star running back. Sam Gaymon is a terrific receiver prospect. This was a good haul.

4. Miami University
The class is heavy on ... Skill players. The offense is slipped over the last few years, mostly because of problems on the line, but an upgrade of weapons was needed. This class might not pay immediate dividends, but QB Zac Dysert fits the MU mold of big passers,  RB Daniel Green has a world of upside, and Julian Harrell and Andrew Cruse are a big receiving tandem that should shine by 2010. Now last year's haul of offensive linemen has to come through.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... RB Daniel Green
The player you might care about this year ... PK Jim Broadway
What it all means to the real world of college football ... There's always a big discrepancy in recruits from the top to the bottom of the MAC, and Miami has maintained consistency throughout the years to stay a power. This class assures the RedHawks aren't going anywhere and will continue to be a favorite for the East title. The offense should have more firepower over the next few seasons.

5. Akron
The class is heavy on ... The secondary. After the focus was mainly on the offense last year, the defense, particularly the secondary, got the attention this season with eight defensive backs coming in. JUCO transfer Kevin Funches is the only likely immediate contributor of the bunch, but there's talent, particularly at corner, to make the secondary a strength over the next few seasons.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... QB Jordan Miller
The player you might care about this year ... WR Deryn Bowser
What it all means to the real world of college football ... The Zips had the league's best recruiting class last year with head man J.D. Brookhart getting a boatload of players. Now that group, along with a good 2006 class, has to start to come through after a big down season, and this year's class should help with the depth. The receiving corps was paid attention to last year, and it got two reinforcements in Deryn Bowser and Dashan Miller.

6. Kent State
The class is heavy on ...Safety. The offensive skill spots received a nice boost of prospects, and the offensive line was loaded up with guards, but the real key to the class is at safety with Josh Pleasant ready to battle for a starting job early on, while Leon Green and Jharron Armstrong are nice players who'll start by 2010.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... RB Sal Battles
The player you might care about this year ... S Josh Pleasant
What it all means to the real world of college football ... There's not a lot of immediate help after making some big splashes over the last two seasons, so this is a class pointing towards the future. For a team that's had a hard time getting over the MAC hump, and is coming off a big-time collapse, it would've been nice if a few JUCO transfers came in to help with the depth.

7. Western Michigan
The class is heavy on ... Tight ends and linebackers. With four tight ends coming in, there will be plenty of options for the next few years with 6-7 Jeff Zipfel a huge target who could fill out his frame and be moved elsewhere, and Blake Hammond a good talent who'll see time early on.  The defense has a slew of new linebackers with four good inside prospects, led by Mitch Zajac, to go along with three strong safeties with JUCO transfer Jamail Berry and fast Joshua Price players to build around.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... QB Simeon Kelly
The player you might care about this year ... S Jamail Berry
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Over the years, WMU has been able to get a ton of fringe players who almost got picked up by the big boys, and while there are few of those types this year, there were more pure MAC talents coming in. That's not necessarily a knock considering recruiting is such an inexact science, but it's more about strength in numbers this year than finding top front line guys.

8. Bowling Green
The class is heavy on ... Quarterbacks. Considering Tyler Sheehan still has two years remaining, and was one of the league's breakout stars last season, it's curious how head coach Gregg Brandon could convince a bomber like JUCO transfer Andrew Beam to come in. Beam isn't looking to sit on the bench and hope for one year of starting time in 2010; he's coming in to compete. Keith Morgan and Aaron Pankratz are two other quarterback prospects who'll sit for a year to be groomed for the future.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... QB Andrew Beam
The player you might care about this year ... OG Blaec Walker
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Considering the team is coming off a big year and a bowl bid, this wasn't a top notch class to capture the momentum. Outside of the quarterbacks, the skill positions weren't needed, but the line loaded up with big bodies and the secondary got a slew of new prospects to develop. Last year's class also needed time to jell, so for the next few years, there will be plenty of competition for jobs.

9. Ohio
The class is heavy on ... Athleticism in the defensive back seven. With three true safeties and three safety-sized linebackers, the Bobcats are getting faster on defense. JUCO transfers Patrick Tafua and Hilton Dawson fill immediate needs at safety, while Alphonso Lewis and Brandon Weaver are strong outside linebacker prospects who could move to safety if needed.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... LB Alphonso Lewis
The player you might care about this year ... QB Boo Jackson
What it all means to the real world of college football ... Ohio seems tired of not having much of a passing game. It tried to improve things a bit with JUCO transfer Boo Jackson coming in to challenge for the starting quarterback job. He's not just a runner, he's a deadly accurate passer who'll be a presence right away. No, the team isn't changing up the overall offensive philosophy, but there might finally be a little more diversity.

10. Ball State
The class is heavy on ... Help for the running game. Ball State has turned into a dangerous passing team thanks to the emergence of QB Nate Davis, and this class will try to balance things out in the future with three running backs, James Cravens, Rashad White and Cory Sykes to build around in a few years, and provide some depth behind Frank Edmunds in the short term. Cravens is the best of the group, while White is a speedster who can be used in a variety of ways. The best prospects brought in are on the offensive line with Austin Holtz a nice sized guard and Blaine Schafer a ready-made tackle.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... P Scott Kovanda
The player you might care about this year ... LB Kyle Hoke
What it all means to the real world of college football ... This was a big class of future prospects, and while the last few years had some key instant impact players, this one doesn't. That's fine since the last few classes have kept the team young and relatively stocked with talent, but for MAC teams worrying that Ball State is about to take a big leap up in production now, it's not going to happen from this class.

11. Eastern Michigan
The class is heavy on ... Offense ... again. The EMU attack has been one-dimensional and limited for the last several years, and the last two classes have tried to change that up. This year, three running backs, two good receivers, and JUCO tight end Kyle Pollock have come aboard. The secondary also received special attention with four safeties and two corners coming aboard. Juandez Brown and Jon Pryor should be good ones.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... S Juandez Brown
The player you might care about this year ... CB Eric Morrison
What it all means to the real world of college football ... The program continues to make decent steps and continues to be just on the verge of turning things around, but the problem has been depth. The starting 22 was decent last year, but there was no one to rely on once injuries hit. The last two classes might have changed that. This year's class might not have many stars, but it's solid.

12. Buffalo
The class is heavy on ... Quarterbacks and defensive linemen. The Bulls needed to find quarterback prospects to develop for the future, and they came up with three interesting players in Jerry Davis, Darius Willis and Zach Maynard to battle it out for a few seasons. The defensive line got the numbers, especially at end, but there aren't any sure-thing instant starters. The tackles, if nothing else, are big with Ritchie Smith checking in at around 300 pounds and Joel Wilson at around 280.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... QB Jerry Davis
The player you might care about this year ... LB Dalonte Wallace
What it all means to the real world of college football ... It's not like Buffalo doesn't have enough problems recruiting, but it wasn't able to build off a big season with head coach Turner Gill in the running for the Nebraska job until late. As always, the program has to try to produce with a slew of marginal D-I talents, and there wasn't anything from this class that'll put the team over the top in the 2008 East race.

13. Northern Illinois
The class is heavy on ... Linebackers. This wasn't a big class and there was absolutely no wow factor, but the linebacking corps got some instant help with three safety-sized prospects in Kevin Sabock and JUCO transfers Darnell Bolding and Kiaree Daniels. If nothing else, the JUCO guys could end up moving to the secondary to provide a bit of help in certain situations.
The player who'll someday be a really big deal ... WR Chase Mejia
The player you might care about this year ... LB Darnell Bolding
What it all means to the real world of college football ... New head coach Jerry Kill didn't have a chance to even make a dent. The problem is that he needed to find some help in a big way after two mediocre recruiting classes have depleted the talent level. While it's an overstatement to say the program is headed for another disaster, it's certainly not in any position to challenge for a division title any time soon.