Posted on: December 8, 2011 7:11 pm
Edited on: December 8, 2011 7:27 pm
Posted by Bryan Fischer
Shockingly, Kansas made the most interesting (or bad depending on your point of view) hire of the offseason in former Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis. The reaction seems to be the Jayhawks hired him?
Weis went 35-27 over five seasons with the Irish, taking them to two BCS bowls. His teams trailed off after the high-water mark in 2006 and though they never realized his "decided schematic advantage" claim, the offenses weren't terrible and he certainly recruited some talent to South Bend. Most notably he was able to beat Pete Carroll head-to-head for prospects like Jimmy Clausen and Manti Te'o.
That said, Weis recruiting to South Bend and to Gainesville this year (where's done well) is much, much different from recruiting to Lawrence, Kansas and a basketball school. He might understand the difficulties but he's never had the deck stacked against him like this. Former head coach Turner Gill didn't do too much during his time with the Jayhawks in terms of recruiting and while the new hire designed "to put Kansas on the map" will certainly grab some recruits attention, the record over the past few years will probably matter more.
It's not an impossible job but somebody has to do it. There's no talent base like there is at Florida or draw like there is with Notre Dame's national reputation and NBC contract. He can make some connections in Texas and maybe hire a top-notch defensive coordinator but it's an uphill battle from the get-go. Mark Mangino took the program to a BCS bowl but given the state of things right now, you wonder if Weis realizes what he's gotten himself in for.
Posted on: December 8, 2011 6:58 pm
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Posted on: December 8, 2011 6:58 pm
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Posted on: December 5, 2011 11:31 pm
Edited on: December 5, 2011 11:36 pm
Posted by Bryan Fischer
Welcome to December, otherwise known as closing time. Bowl practices and holidays make things a little more complicated for some coaches but others enjoy the grind as they hit the home stretch two months out from Signing Day. Here's a list of four recruiters in each part of the country to keep an eye on in each part of the country.
Ed Orgeron, USC
Does any recruiter have a better reputation than Ed Orgeron? Probably not. The Trojans defensive line coach has been relentless in the recruiting trail and instrumental in helping manage the program's numbers situation with limited scholarships to hand out. He's hit SoCal hard and been a big reason why plenty of offensive (Max Tuerk, Jordan Simmons) and defensive (Ellis McCarthy, Noah Spence) are committed to, or looking at, USC. Also note that linebackers coach Joe Barry has done a great job with his position group, Orange County (Calif.) and Arizona during his time in LA.
Tosh Lupoi, California
It's been pretty amazing to see Lupoi's rise as a recruiter and coach at Cal but you can see why when looking at his handiwork. He's a younger Orgeron but is quickly becoming his equal after landing players such as Brennan Scarlett and Viliami Moala last year. As a Bay Area-native, he's done a great job of getting talent close to home while also going national and bringing players in. Though the Bears class is somewhat small, expect it to grow in a cover as Lupoi enters the home stretch. His top target right now is five-star Arik Armstead.
Demetrice Martin, Washington
The Huskies staff has lots of Southern California connections but Martin has been a great closer down the stretch with kids. He's relatable as a young guy and knows many of the high school coaches in the area. Don't be surprised if he lands some skill position talent for UW's class this year from the LA area.
John Neal, Oregon
One of the Ducks' ace recruiters, Neal has hit other areas of the country with success and does well in the cities. He landed nearby athlete Oshay Dunmore and had a hand in defensive backs Eric and Stephen Amoako committing from the Dallas-area. Several athletes from the East and Southern California are in contact with him and don't be shocked to hear his name come up some more.
Dameyune Craig, Florida State
Not sure anybody has gone into another powerhouse's backyard and raided it like Craig has Alabama's. The big star was quarterback Jameis Winston but he's also been instrumental in landing Chris Casher and Justin Shanks. There's a few more targets on the Seminoles board and don't be surprised if Craig is the one helping get them to Tallahassee.
Mike Bobo, Georgia
It's funny but Bobo's on the field duties have caused a few Georgia fans to want him out of the program but his time spent in recruits' homes and on the trail has been a big asset to the Bulldogs. He was one of the people behind last year's 'Dream Team' and has managed to sell stability at a program that only got it with 10 straight wins during the regular season. This year appears to be another time for him to shine with in-state recruits once again.
Tee Martin, Kentucky
That Martin has done a good job as a recruiter should surprise no one but given that he the former Tennessee star has done it at Kentucky is a little bit. He managed to get a huge surprise last Signing Day in wide out Daryl Collins and might be able to pull off the same magic again this year. Martin has done a great job in Alabama in particular and the only question seems to be if he can resist heading back to Knoxville with a staff opening there.
Frank Wilson, LSU
Last year he was a machine, with a hand in landing offensive tackle La'El Collins, defensive tackle Anthony Johnson and running back Kenny Hilliard among others (all three saw plenty of playing time in LSU's run to New Orleans). Easily the Tigers' best recruiter, Wilson has been one reason why there's a figurative fence around the state of Louisiana. Linebacker Trey Granier was one of his big gets with the 2012 group and don't be surprised if he gets a few others as well.
Tony Alford, Notre Dame
Don't be surprised if Alford can snag a big fish for Notre Dame late in the process. He got a commitment from Justin Ferguson out of Florida and appears to be focusing his time on the state to land a few others. With some issues at Florida, he could be one person to take advantage given his ties in the northern part of the state.
Fred Jackson, Michigan
The Wolverines have put together the best class of 2012 in the country and Jackson is a big part of it. He's mainly an in-state guy and lucky for him he's got a great group coming out and done an even better job of keeping them home. He's plucked two out of Farmington Hills (Mich.) in Devin Funchess and Mario Ojemudia and played a role in Royce Jenkins-Stone's pledge. He's been at the school a long time and knows how to sell Michigan to players.
Adrian Klemm, SMU
Klemm is not a household name by any means but should be based on what he's done this year. Though SMU isn't exactly a powerhouse, June Jones has engineered a turnaround in Dallas and Klemm has been a big part as recruiting coordinator. Though the school is located in a talent-rich area of a talent-rich state, the former New England Patriot has done a great job getting talented Los Angeles-area players to come East. Six SoCal natives are committed to the Mustangs class of 2012 at the moment and more could be coming. With rumors of Jones taking the Arizona State job, expect Klemm to come along to really ramp up the LA ties.
Urban Meyer/Luke Fickell, Ohio State
Yes, Meyer's not an assistant coach. But he hasn't really assembled his staff at this point and thus is going a significant share of the recruiting himself. He has certainly been active and because Fickell is remaining on staff, we'll count these two as one super-recruiter. Though recruiting hasn't been up to Ohio State standards with the 2012 group, that was to be expected given the turnover at head coach and NCAA violations in Columbus. Fickell landed Curtis Grant and Ryan Shazier last year and did a good job with Adolphus Washington this year. The two are going to be a very good asset despite what amounts to a false start with the upcoming class. Things have already paid off dividends and the Buckeyes are in the running for defensive end Noah Spence.
Davis decommits from Florida
Been a wild few days down in the South. Stone Mountain (Ga.) running back Mike Davis was one of the recent invites to the Army All-American Bowl and had the jersey ceremony for himself and fellow teammate Raphael Kirby on Thursday. At the time, rumors started to surface that he was having issues with the staff and would soon decommit.
Over the weekend he went on an official visit to Tennessee and finally on Sunday night, he made the new official that he was no longer a Florida pledge.
"My mind right now is open," Davis told Rivals. "My recruitment has opened back up. I've talked to my parents, my mom, my brother, all my family. Right now it's Florida State, South Carolina, Alabama and Miami. But things can change."
From the sounds of things, the 5-foot-9, 190-pounder is completely wide open and will not be considering the Gators despite being in their 2012 class since February and one of their biggest supporters.
"I can't really talk about it," he said cryptically. "Some things happened that I don't want to comment on between me and the coaches. All I'll say is that it was a miscommunication between them, me and my brother. Some things that weren't supposed to happen."
Ranked as the 10th-best running back in the country by Maxpreps, losing Davis is big blow to Florida as the new staff tries to remake the team using more of a pro-style offense. One of the central pieces of the class and expected to compete early on for some playing time as a change of pace guy, Charlie Weis is now down to just Matt Jones at running back in 2012. With their top 2013 target off the board to Georgia in Derrick Henry, Florida now has to scramble to get another player back into the fold at the position.
Busy week for Armstead
After decommitting from USC, the recruitment of Pleasant Grove (Calif.) lineman Arik Armstead has steadily picked up. He's been going on several official visits the past few weeks and has kept his phone close by.
USC and Notre Dame are among the schools that have already stopped by for an in-home and several more are lined up over the next few days. Among the scheduled ones this week are Washington, Oregon and Auburn. He'll be making the short trip to Cal at some point during the weekend. Also keep in mind that Armstead wants to play basketball and that will be a factor in his decision.
Video of the week
Tags: Adolphus Washington, Adrian Klemm, Alabama, Anthony Johnson, Arik Armstead, Arizona State, Army All-American Bowl, Auburn, Brennan Scarlett, Cal, California, Charlie Weis, Chris Casher, Curtis Grant, Dameyune Craig, Daryl Collins, Demetrice Martin, Derrick Henry, Devin Funchess, Ed Orgeron, Ellis McCarthy, Eric Amoako, Florida, Florida State, Frank Wilson, Fred Jackson, Georgia, Jameis Winston, Joe Barry, John Neal, Jordan Simmons, June Jones, Justin Ferguson, Justin Shanks, Kenny Hilliard, Kentucky, La'El Collins, LSU, Luke Fickell, mario Ojemudia, Matt Jones, Max Tuerk, Miami, Michigan, Mike Bobo, Mike Davis, New England Patriots, Noah Spence, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oregon, Oshay Dunmore, Raphael Kirby, Royce Jenkins-Stone, Ryan Shazier, SMU, South Carolina, Stephen Amoako, Tee Martin, Tennessee, Tony Alford, Tosh Lupoi, Trey Granier, Urban Meyer, USC, Viliami Moala, Washington
Posted on: October 27, 2011 1:55 pm
Edited on: October 27, 2011 1:55 pm
Posted by Bryan Fischer
The country's top tight end has made a decision about where he's playing college football and is staying close to home. Land O'Lakes (Fla.) tight end Kent Taylor committed to Florida Thursday afternoon during a ceremony in which he received his jersey for the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.
“I’m really excited for the opportunity I have to play for Florida,” Taylor said, according to GatorCountry.com. “I’m going to go there and try and win a national championship at Florida.”
The 6-foot-5, 220-pound Taylor selected the Gators over Penn State, Florida State and Georgia among others. He should be a good fit in Charlie Weis' offense, which features the tight end more as a receiver than a blocker on the line. Taylor has the frame to add weight but has speed and will likely play early as more of a pass catcher given the school's lack of depth at the position.
Ranked 34th overall in the country this year, the five-star pushes Florida to second overall in the MaxPreps team rankings as the fifth top 100 recruit for new head coach Will Muschamp. Taylor has 18 catches for 322 yards and three touchdowns this season and becomes the 17th commitment for the Gator's class of 2012 and second at the tight end position.
Posted on: August 9, 2011 10:10 am
Posted by Bryan Fischer
1. Florida (#3 overall according to MaxPreps)
Three top 100 players and a solid foundation on the offensive line give Florida the top spot at the moment in the SEC. Plenty can change but this class brings a mix of players who fit Will Muschamp and Charlie Weis' style and who are terrific athletes.
2. Alabama (#7)
This class also has three top 100 players and it would be no surprise to see the Crimson Tide end up in the top spot come Signing Day. They lost out on in-state quarterback Jameis Winston but picked up a good replacement signal-caller in Alec Morris and this class features a lot of really good athletes who could play multiple positions.
3. LSU (#9)
The Tigers have two top 100 commits but one of them, Avery Johnson, is on shaky ground and is still pretty open with his recruitment. That said, this class is full of talented athletes that can play on either side of the ball and, though it might take a year or two in the program, could have some impact defensive players.
4. Auburn (#10)
Auburn has certainly seen a championship bounce in their recruiting, grabbing three top 100 recruits for 2012. Tight end Darrion Hutcherson can come in and play right away, as can several others out of this group.
5. South Carolina (#12)
The Old Ball Coach Steve Spurrier has mopped up in-state talent as of late and is doing so again with this class. Shaq Roland is the lone top 100 recruit but this class fills needs and brings in several talented skill position players.
6. Georgia (#20)
Despite Mark Richt being on the hot seat, he certainly can recruit. They have two top 100 players on either side of the line in Jonathan Taylor and John Theus and they've added several other quality players on defense so far.
7. Vanderbilt (#23)
This class is headlined by top 100 recruit Brian Kimbrow but there's also a lot of other talented recruits that Commodores fans have been unaccustomed to landing. James Franklin and company have particularly gone after the defensive line and have hit Georgia and Tennessee hard for recruits.
There's no big name for the Razorbacks in this class but it's a solid group of athletes with a lot of potential. The wide receivers in particular could take some time to develop but have the physical tools to be very good in Bobby Petrino's system.
Loaded with Blaylocks (three players with the last name) and linemen, this class has done a good job honing in on a few diamonds in the rough. Quarterback Patrick Towles is an Elite 11-level quarterback and could play early in his career.
This class has some momentum after being one of the smaller classes at the beginning of July. At the linebacker position in particular they've done a great job of landing talented recruits but have to address other areas to rise up this list.
11. Ole Miss
It's a solid but not spectacular effort so far for Houston Nutt. They are bringing in several good running backs but need to continue their course if they want to move up the pecking order.
12. Mississippi State
The Bulldogs have mined the in-state talent and gotten several above average athletes but there is no big name you would expect after having a big season.
Tags: Alabama, Alec Morris, Arkansas, Auburn, Avery Johnson, Bobby Petrino, Brian Kimbrow, Charlie Weis, Darrion Hutcherson, Elite 11, Florida, Georgia, Houston Nutt, Jameis Winston, James Franklin, John Theus, Jonathan Taylor, Kentucky, LSU, Mark Richt, Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Patrick Towles, SEC, Shaq Roland, South Carolina, Steve Spurrier, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Will Muschamp
Posted on: May 9, 2011 11:09 am
Edited on: May 9, 2011 11:16 am
Posted by Bryan Fischer
CBSSports.com senior writer Dennis Dodd rolls out an updated Post-Spring Top 25 today and while he names an MVP for each team, we figure every team is going to need an incoming freshman to step up if they want to keep their spot in the top 25 throughout the season. Here's each team's impact freshman out of their class of 2011:
1. Oklahoma: Dodd notes that the class of 2010 has turned out very well for the Sooners but they'll need a few guys from the class of 2011 to help fill out the depth chart. Running back Brandon Williams is a talented running back out of the state of Texas who is expected to play right away with DeMarco Murrary gone and the offense needing another player in their "diamond" formation with three running backs.
2. Alabama: Alabama's defense is expected to be one of the best Nick Saban has ever had but that doesn't mean a freshman can't be a contributor on special teams and with spot play on defense. Linebacker Trey DePriest enrolled early and seemed to make an impression on the coaching staff. Junior college transfer Aaron Douglas, a freshman All-American at Tennessee, could also end up being a starting tackle too.
3. LSU: Anthony Johnson was one of the top defensive tackles coming out of high school and he looked like he would be the next great LSU man in the middle after a very good spring for an early enrollee. He has the size and quickness to play right away and could make an impact as a pass rusher on third down as he gets acclimated to the speed of college football.
4. Oregon: The Ducks don't have to replace much on offense but they are looking for a few pass catching threats to step up for quarterback Darron Thomas. Another early enrollee and one of the highest rated recruits Oregon has brought in, Colt Lyerla could be one of the answers at tight end, receiver and running back. In short, he's a great athlete and Chip Kelly will find a way to get the ball in his hands.
5. Stanford: The Cardinal are pretty set on offense with Andrew Luck back and running the show but there are a few spots on defense where some freshmen could come in. The new staff must find two new linebackers for this upcoming season and it wouldn't be surprising if James Vaughters ends up making a push for one of them.
6. Oklahoma State: Already expected to have an explosive offense this year to possibly propel them to a BCS game, the Cowboys have high hopes for incoming running back Herschel Sims. Defenses will have to make sure they are ready for the passing game first and Sims might be able to take advantage of some daylight.
7. Texas A&M: Defensive leader Von Miller is off to the NFL (if there is an NFL next year) and while it will be hard for any freshman to replace that kind of production in College Station, look for linebacker Shaun Ward to at least be in the mix to play once he gets on campus.
8. Florida State: The Seminoles are going to have high expectations for the first time in awhile and there are high expectations being placed on incoming tight end Nick O'Leary. While most people talk about him as being the grandson of golfer Jack Nicklaus, the talented O'Leary is also quite a pass catcher who should play right away.
9. Ohio State: There could be two impact players for the Buckeyes depending on how things shake out in fall camp. Quarterback Braxton Miller is certainly in the race to be the starter with Terrelle Pryor suspended for five games and showed flashes during the spring. Linebacker Curtis Grant was one of the top players coming out of high school and should be able to fill in right away on defense.
10. Nebraska: The Huskers have their sights on a Big Ten title in their first year in the league and if they're going to take some pressure off quarterback Taylor Martinez, running back Aaron Green could be a big part of the offense.
11. Michigan State: Mark Dantonio fought off some big time programs for in-state linebacker Lawrence Thomas and one of the reasons why is Thomas is expected to come in right away and play well for the Spartans.
12. Wisconsin: The Badgers typically don't play many freshmen but tight end Austin Traylor could help break in a new quarterback as both a blocker and receiver.
13. Arkansas: Brey Cook knew the Razorbacks would need to replace both tackles and he enrolled early and ended up at the top of the depth chart coming out of spring ball. Anytime you can get a young freshmen start at tackle, you know you have a good one on your hands.
14. Boise State: Most of the freshmen for Boise State are expected to redshirt and develop but kicker Jake van Ginkel could end up the starter with a good fall camp because he has quite a leg.
15. Auburn: Where to start? The Tigers lose a lot of players to either graduation or the draft and several from this class are expected to compete for playing time. Don't be surprised if Kris Frost is a starter at linebacker and able to leave his mark on the Plains early on.
16. TCU: Gary Patterson expereinced a Rose Bowl bounce on the recruiting trail and landed a very good athlete in LaDarius Brown, who will be able to contribute right away on offense and special teams.
17. Virginia Tech: The Hokies need to replace a lot of their secondary and the incoming class is loaded with defensive backs as a result. Ronny Vandyke might be the one to step up based on his size and speed and help out right away.
18. South Carolina: This happens to be the easiest choice on the list since Jadeveon Clowney was the number player in the class of 2011. He should provide an instant pass rush threat to a team that didn't generate much from the front four last year.
19. Notre Dame: Irish fans came out of the spring singing the praises of Aaron Lynch and the early enrollee defensive end certainly put on a show to give them a reason for it.
20. Mississippi State: Defensive tackle P.J. Jones was one of the top guys in the incoming class and Bulldog fans hope he can be a factor early on under a new defensive coordinator.
21. Arizona State: There's very few spots avaliable for the incoming Sun Devils with so much of the starting lineup set with upperclassmen but Mo Latu should be able to provide some depth along the offensive line.
22. Utah: The Utes brought in a very good class and you could tell they sold the opportunity to be the first to play in the Pac-12 their entire careers at Utah. Running back Harvey Langi is a load with the football and junior college safety Keith McGill is a big body who can come in play right away.
23. Georgia: The "Dream Team" recruiting class will come into Athens with high expectations but top running back Isaiah Crowell should boost a rushing attack that was in the bottom three in the SEC last year.
24. West Virginia: New offensive coordinator/future head coach Dana Holgorsen should have an explosive offense led by Geno Smith and incoming running back Andrew Buie could be another speedy player to get the ball in his hands.
25. Florida: The Gators will transition to more of a pro-style offense under Charlie Weis so it's to be determined how everyone fits in but look out for tight end A.C. Leonard. He looks the part and could be a nice weapon for quarterback John Brantley.
Tags: A.C. Leonard, Aaron Douglas, Aaron Green, Aaron Lynch, Alabama, Andrew Buie, Anthony Johnson, Arizona State, Arkansas, Auburn, Austin Traylor, Big Ten, Boise State, Brandon Williams, Braxton Miller, Brey Cook, Charlie Weis, Chip Kelly, Colt Lyerla, Curtis Grant, Dana Holgorsen, Florida, Florida State, Gary Patterson, Georgia, Harvey Langi, Herschel Sims, Isaiah Crowell, Jadeveon Clowney, Jake van Ginkel, James Vaughters, Keith McGill, Kris Frost, LaDarius Brown, Lawrence Thomas, LSU, Michigan State, Mississippi State, Mo Latu, Nebraska, Nick O'Leary, Nick Saban, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Oregon, P.J. Jones, Ronny Vandyke, Shaun Ward, South Carolina, Stanford, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Top 25, Trey DePriest, Utah, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Wisconsin
Posted on: May 5, 2011 6:27 pm
Edited on: May 5, 2011 6:27 pm
Posted by Bryan Fischer
Florida reached the double digit plateau of commitments Thursday with the pledge of Warminister (Pa.) tight end Colin Thompson.
The Gators have not had to go outside of the state too often for recruits but they've done well in targeting players north of the Mason-Dixon Line under new head coach Will Muschamp lately and Thompson is the latest to head south to play some SEC football.
"It was a place where I could feel comfortable with the coaches, players and the school," Thompson told Rivals. "All three fit and I just liked the school overall, the players, the kids, the teammates. A few of my new teammates texted me so I'm definitely excited about that."
One big factor in Thompson's decision to pick Florida was the presence of former NFL offensive coordinator and Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weis.
"I want to start a regime at tight end there," he said. "It's something they really haven't had. So that's something new there that Aaron Hernandez started off and now will continue with Charlie Weis. I think coach Muschamp picked the right guy to coach my position.
"Him being in the NFL is a big deal for me. He coached in the NFL and cultivated guys in the NFL. That's definitely big for me and his offense is tailored to my skills."
The 6-foot-5, 250 pound Thompson selected Florida over Wisconsin and Boston College. He was also recruited by assistant Derrick Lewis and becomes the fifth offensive commitment for the class of 2012.