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Recruiting 2010 - The Insider Answers, Part 2
Miami head coach Randy Shannon
Miami head coach Randy Shannon
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Jan 26, 2010


Is Randy Shannon able to keep the top Miami players home? Is Arizona State doing anything to help the O line? These questions and more in Part Two of the key questions and insider answers for the 2010 recruiting season.


Recruiting 2010 - Key Questions

The Inside Info - Part Two

 
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 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 1 - Is Bama taking advantage?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 3 - Do recruits care about JoePa's future?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 4 - How is FSU doing without Bowden?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 5 - Does the loss of Carroll matter at USC?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 6 - Did the rumors about Stoops matter at OU?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 7 - Are Urban's health issues a problem? 
- Recruiting 2009 - The Key Questions

Q: How much is Baylor head coach Art Briles selling the idea of playing alongside Robert Griffin? Is he upgrading the overall talent level enough to make more of a difference in the Big 12?


A: Playing with Robert Griffin is no doubt a big selling point to some recruits. Many of them have mentioned this when discussing why they committed to Baylor. The injury to Griffin last year killed Baylor's hopes for a bowl, but it also gave him another year of eligibility with a medical redshirt, so the guys coming in now will have three years to play with him and they realize that. On top of that, I really think Briles' commitment to Baylor helped close the deal with some kids as this recruiting cycle comes to a close. When a Big 12 South rival Texas Tech came calling, Briles demonstrated that he is committed to Baylor. In a year when coaches were splitting from their school all over the place, it gave some kids comfort to know Briles and Baylor are committed.

As far as the overall talent level, I think Briles is adding enough to be competitive in the Big 12. Will he have the depth of a Texas or Oklahoma? Of course not, but had Baylor not had the number of injuries it had last year, I definitely think you could have seen a couple more Big 12 wins which would have meant a bowl game. There are guys throughout this current class that have offers from other Big 12 and BCS schools, and that is the key for Baylor and Briles. That means you are bringing in talent that other schools want. ... From Steve Brischke, BearsIllustrated.com

Q: Is there any concern about the athleticism of BYU after problems with Florida State and TCU, and is Bronco Mendenhall able to go after the top players or just the players who fit the program?

A: There's a lot of concern especially considering that TCU has been able to blow the Cougars out two years in a row. The lack of athleticism is mostly on the defensive side of the ball where BYU has problems matching up with really fast teams. This forces them to play a very soft zone which teams such as TCU have learned to exploit.

It's a problem for Bronco Mendenhall to attract a lot of the national talent at defensive back and other positions where speed is at a premium considering that the top defensive athletes often don't fit all that well into the BYU program. When Mendenhall first became head coach he attempted to fill the traditionally weak cornerback spots with high school talent, but has lately gone to the JC ranks where it paid immediate dividends with players such as Brian Logan and safety Andrew Rich. I'd strongly suspect that BYU will be looking to fill their cornerback slots with mostly JC players in the coming years. ... From Brandon Burney, TotalBlueSports.com

Q: Is Randy Shannon still able to keep the top Miami recruits home? Why does it seem like some local players are leaking out?

A: For the most part, yes, Shannon is able to keep most of the top players at home. We live in a society that puts a lot of emphasis on how many stars are next to a player's name or how many times they've read about the kids to determine how much the fans want those players. When that happens, that changes perception of reality sometimes. For example, if you had asked 10 average fans from the Miami area nine of them would have told you they thought Jeffrey Godfrey was the No. 1 QB prospect in the area. He may be. However, Miami's coaches saw things differently for their particular system. They never recruited Godfrey while offering and accepting a commitment from Pace's Stephen Morris instead. To the average fan, Miami lost out. In reality, the Canes got the man they wanted. That doesn't mean they'll end up with a better player but they got the kid they wanted. The same thing can apply a lot of different ways. Hialeah's Calvin Smith is being recruited by everyone and is highly rated by a lot of recruiting sites. He has taken visits to Tennessee, Florida State, Alabama, etc. Miami never recruited him for whatever reason. Instead, they offered a local DL named Delmar Taylor who only had two other Div 1 scholarship offers. Again, only time will tell whether they made the right decision there. Two linebackers, Gideon Ajagbe and Darren Kitchens, were never recruited by Miami but they became national recruits so the perception is that those are two good players "getting away".

One thing's for sure -- Shannon and his staff make their own evaluations and they stick to them. They trust them. It's what built the dynasty over the last couple decades. It started with Howard and continued with Jimmy and then into the Butch Davis era. They went after the kids they wanted, not just the ones who were the most heavily rated or recruited.

Time will tell whether or not they made the right evaluations but the Canes, for the most part, got who they wanted from south Florida with the headliners being four-star running back Eduardo Clements and four-star offensive lineman Brandon Linder. Those were two of the most heavily recruited players in the entire state. ... From Mike Bakas, CanesTime.com

Q: Is Dennis Erickson doing anything to provide an instant impact for the O line? Will there be any more firepower this year from this class?

A: The Arizona State staff has done a very good job providing instant help for the offensive line. For starters, they landed, arguably, the biggest impact player on offense in the Dennis Erickson era - four-star prospect 6-8 320 junior college left tackle Brice Schwab. The Palomar (Calif.) lineman, who is enrolled at ASU for the spring semester, decommitted from USC after Pete Carroll left and was sought after by more than a dozen BCS conference teams. The Sun Devils were in danger of going into this season without a proven left tackle, and Schwab effectively addresses that need. Prior to the Schwab commitment, ASU landed the services of El Camino JC offensive guard Chris De Armas, who also is enrolled in the spring. The 6-4 305 De Armas is older than most junior college transfers and will bring maturity and a leadership to a fairly inexperienced line.

Right tackle was another position that needed to be addressed in this class, and once again ASU went the JC route and got a verbal commitment from another El Camino lineman - Aderious Simmons. The 6-7 299 tackle is a raw talent, having played football just two years, but packs a lot of potential and provides size that hasn't been seen in a long time in Tempe at that position.

It was no secret that the Sun Devil offense was anemic last season. With a multitude of new faces, a turnaround is certainly expected in 2010. Quarterback Steven Threet is a transfer from Michigan who sat out last year, and is expected to get the nod at signal caller. He played extensively for the Wolverines as a freshman and is regarded as the best option for ASU at this position. With his commitment shown in the weight room and the film room last season, he proved during the year that he sat out that he is ready to be a leader for this squad.

Deantre Lewis is a four-star running back from Norco who with 31 TD's and over 2,300 yards rushing, was one the best best in the state of California last year. He's a lighting speed ball carrier who is the proverbial home-run threat once he get into the open field. He steps into a running back group that doesn't have an established starter and will probably be relied on to make an impact as a true freshman.

Wide receiver is a position that has underperformed the last couple of seasons, and just like at offensive line help will come from the junior college ranks. The biggest addition is four-star George Bell from Southwestern. At 6-3 195 Bell, who is already enrolled in school, provides a solid combination of size and speed. At 6-3 215 Cerritos' Mike Willie is another physical wideout addition for ASU. Oregon transfer Aaron Pflugrad is eligible to play this year and along with Threet on the scout team in 2009 he provided a lot of reason for optimism for an offense that is in need for a jump start. ... From Hod Rabino, DevilsDigest.com

- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 1 - Is Bama taking advantage?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 3 - Do recruits care about JoePa's future?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 4 - How is FSU doing without Bowden?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 5 - Does the loss of Carroll matter at USC?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 6 - Did the rumors about Stoops matter at OU?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 7 - Are Urban's health issues a problem? 
- Recruiting 2009 - The Key Questions