Tag:California
Posted on: December 12, 2011 1:30 pm
 

Productive weekend for Cal with commit of WR Powe

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Jeff Tedford has hosted big recruiting weekends in Berkeley before but this past weekend's list of official and unofficial visitors might have been one of the more impressive collection of recruits at Cal in some time. The success of the weekend will be measured with commitments though and the Bears grabbed at least one in Lakewood (Calif.) wide receiver Darius Powe.

"It's the education, the location, the fans, the players and trust in the coaches," Powe told BearTerritory.net.

The 6-foot-2, 185-pound wide out held offers from Arizona, Nebraska, Oregon and UCLA but saw interest by Cal coaches pick up in the past few weeks. Visiting the school with commits such as Bryce Treggs and, especially, quarterback Zach Kline helped convince Powe to join the class as much as the coaches did.

"Oh yeah, we'll get closer," Powe said of playing with Kline. "It's really big to have a big QB there with me."

Powe becomes the fourth player at his position in the Bears' class of 2012 as the staff looks to replace several departing seniors. He wrapped up his senior season with 33 catches for 516 yards and eight touchdowns. California recently added a commitment from Freddie Tagaloa the week before Powe's as they look to pick up the momentum in the class of 2012.
Posted on: December 8, 2011 1:54 am
Edited on: December 8, 2011 1:54 am
 

Sooners add California receiver Derrick Woods

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Oklahoma has built quite a successful pipeline from the state of California to Norman and it paid off once again with their latest pledge. Inglewood (Calif.) wide receiver Derrick Woods made things official Tuesday and committed to the Sooners.

“I have been thinking about it for a minute now,” Woods told 247sports. “I just felt it was the right place for me. I felt I had connected well with the coaches and the players and it was just about that time.

The 6-foot, 180-pounder has been coveted by the offensive staff for Oklahoma for some time. Woods also held offers from Alabama, California, Florida, Oregon and USC but felt the heart of the country was the right place for him primarily due to his relationship with his future position coach.

“Coach (Jay) Norvell and I have a great relationship and we pretty much just talk about the things that Oklahoma has and the things that I will bring to the offense," he said. "Once we got that across, and I talked it over with my parents and my coaches and they felt OU was a good place for me and so did I, so that is how it came together. They also have a good quarterback."

Woods is the 17th commitment for Oklahoma's class of 2012 and 11th on offense. He is rated as the 9th-best wide receiver in the country this year by MaxPreps.

Posted on: December 6, 2011 9:56 am
 

12/6 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

  Top quarterback Gunner Kiel will take an official visit to Notre Dame this weekend.

  Several Oklahoma State commits are upset at the Cowboys missing out on the title game.

  N.C. State commit Charlie Hedegus has some interest in South Florida.

  Steve Fairchild's firing has left Colorado State's recruiting in limbo.

  What happens if top running back Keith Marshall does not pick Georgia?

  Defensive end Dalvin Tomlinson rated his visit to Georgia Tech as a '8 or 9.'

  Carl Pelini was hired in part to fix FAU's recruiting problems.

  Rice fired recruiting coordinator/running backs coach Rick LaFavers.

Commitments

  Quarterback Tyler Cameron switched his commitment from USF to Wake Forest. The Bulls added a JUCO offensive lineman however.

  Wide receiver Chris Harper became the latest in a Southern California to SMU pipeline.

  Former Texas Tech pledge Christian Okafor has committed to Cal.

  Washington added North Torrance (Calif.) athlete Ryan McDaniel.

  Another commit for UCLA despite the coaching change as running back Paul Perkins pledged to be a Bruin.

Posted on: December 5, 2011 11:31 pm
Edited on: December 5, 2011 11:36 pm
 

National Notes: Top assistants to keep an eye on

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.

West

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.

South

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.

Midwest

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



Posted on: November 29, 2011 10:00 am
Edited on: November 29, 2011 10:01 am
 

11/29 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Ohio State recruits, no surprise, like the idea of Urban Meyer as their head coach.

Only recruiting can help turn around Florida after a disappointing season.

 Colorado coaches are ready to burn up the recruiting trail now that the season is over.

 Maryland is becoming a serious player for D'vario Montgomery.

 Nick Saban was dressed up and ready to go recruiting after Alabama's regular season is over.

 Missouri will widen the area they recruit but won't make a huge change in how they recruit with their move to the SEC.

 Nebraska has turned their attention to recruiting.

 California has much more to sell to recruits when Jeff Tedford and company head out.

 Georgia has won 10 straight on the field, can they get hot off it?


Posted on: November 16, 2011 2:01 pm
Edited on: November 16, 2011 2:05 pm
 

Five-star tailback Marshall commits to Oregon

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Oregon's recruiting for the class of 2012 hasn't received the boost many thought it would with an appearance in the BCS national championship game and back-to-back Pac-10 titles. Wednesday morning however, it did get a big bump with the commitment of San Jose (Calif.) running back Byron Marshall.

"Yes I committed to Oregon last night," Marshall told 247sports.

The 5-foot-10, 190-pound senior selected the Ducks over Arizona State, California, Notre Dame and Washington. He is regarded as the top tailback on the West Coast and is ranked as the fourth-best in the country.

"He runs low to the ground with great speed, vision and balance," Maxpreps analyst Tom Lemming said of Marshall. "A physical runner, he will not go down with arm tackles, shows good cutback ability and is even effective between the tackles. He shows the good vision to find an open space in the defense and exploits it for big gains."

The five-star is easily Chip Kelly's top recruit for the class of 2012 and was a priority for his staff with needs to fill at the position. Marshall's father told 247sports that the speedy running back will take his official visit to Eugene for the Civil War game against Oregon State.

Marshall is the younger brother of Arizona State running back Cameron Marshall.





Posted on: November 14, 2011 8:19 pm
Edited on: November 14, 2011 8:28 pm
 

National Notes: Houston, Hutchings & De La Salle

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Had a chance to go out to see San Francisco Bay Area powerhouse De La Salle play California High last Friday. The Spartans have been one of the most successful programs in the country this decade and have sent plenty of players to Division I schools and eventually the NFL.

This year's squad has three seniors already committed to FBS schools and two juniors drawing plenty of attention as well. The headliner is four-star quarterback and Wisconsin commitment Bart Houston, who is every bit of his 6-foot-4, 215-pound frame. Houston had a very good summer on the camp circuit and parlayed that into a solid season with the Spartans, leading them to a 9-1 record heading into the playoffs. If there's one thing you'll hear about him, it's that he's the perfect fit for the Badgers offensive system with a quick release, some mobility, good decision-making and the arm to get the ball downfield on post and fade routes.

Houston ended up 13-of-20 for 220 yards against California in a 24-3 win that didn't have the De La Salle ground game looking as sharp as it normally is. The signal-caller showed flashes of what makes him a top 100 player according to Maxpreps however, displaying nice touch on intermediate routes and spinning the ball well on short routes. There was only one or two decisions Houston would have liked back but was efficient the entire night and even added a short touchdown run. In short, you can understand why the Badgers went out of their normal recruiting areas to heavily recruit Houston because he certainly fits the mold of their previous quarterbacks to a T.

"Bart really impressed me with his accuracy, poise, leadership skills, pocket presence, and arm strength," analyst Tom Lemming says of Houston. "His accuracy is uncanny and he seems to put the ball on the money just about every time even when under pressure."

The best player on the field however was junior linebacker Michael Hutchings, who is also the top defensive player in the Bay Area and top underclass linebacker on the West Coast. At 6-foot-2, 210-pounds or so, Hutchings moves well in space and covers a whole lot of ground in the passing game. He likely will end up as an outside linebacker but it's not hard to see him bulking up and being able to play inside in a 3-4 scheme. Physically he has a big upper body and reminds some of former USC linebacker Keith Rivers. He got lost on a few plays but for the most part read his keys very well and you can tell he'll head to college with a plenty of experience.

"Last year we had a tough game against Cal High when I was on the field as a sophomore," Hutchings said. "It was definitely a grind, something we wanted to come back and get. I still say it was a sub par performance this game but they're a heck of a team."

The De La Salle linebacking corps is one of the best units in the country and also features California commit Michael Barton. The pair is close on and off the field and continue to develop into better players with the senior mentoring the younger linebacker.

"Barton is such a hard worker," Hutchings said. "Him and (Boise State commit Blake) Renaud guided me last year and now Barton has taken over this year. I just want to follow in their footsteps and keep the tradition going."

Hutchings is approaching the 15 offer mark and figures to see plenty more college coaches contact him in the coming months as the recruiting cycle shifts over to the class of 2013 on a full-time basis. Most of the Pac-12 has been in touch or extended an offer but even with plenty of time until Signing Day, Hutchings is already starting to develop a short list of schools.

"I have a group of favorites, USC, Cal, UCLA, Washington," he said. "And Oklahoma also.

"I was at Cal last week for the Washington State game. I looked at AT&T Park a little bit and got to be around the team. I probably won't take any other visits in the next couple of weeks but after the season in December I will."

Don't be surprised if this comes down to a USC/Cal battle with Hutchings committing some time over the summer following visits to both schools. Academics seem to be a big part of each school's pitch and the Bears have De La Salle alum and ace recruiter Tosh Lupoi assigned to the impressive linebacker. Though he's already successfully recruited Barton, it might be a little tougher for Lupoi to land Hutchings as USC is just one of several schools who are also making the future top 100 player a priority.

For now though, recruiting is being pushed aside as the Spartans turn their attention to the playoffs. With a title in hand thanks to a perfect 7-0 mark in the East Bay Athletic League and likely number one seed headed into the North Coast Section playoffs, another state championship is out there for the taking.

"We don't want to have any regrets," Hutchings said. "We want to go into every game, hit hard, don't make mistakes and have no regrets. We want to go into the playoffs and finish the season off right. As a junior, I just want to lead the junior and help the seniors win their state championship just like they did last year."

Georgia adds versatile quarterback

There weren't a ton of commitments this weekend but the most notable was Palm Beach (Fla.) quarterback Faton Bauta. A transfer from New York, he came in and won the quarterback spot at one of the big local programs - Palm Beach Dwyer - and has been dead set at playing the position in college, which Georgia appeared to recruit him at.

"My goal is set on being a quarterback at the next level and beyond. I am going to do whatever it takes and work hard every day like I do to get that goal I have set," he told UGASports.com. "My goal is still growing, to be an elite quarterback. I am going to keep working hard on my skills to do everything to make myself a better quarterback."

The 6-foot-4, 225-pounder is a versatile athlete and could play multiple positions in college such as linebacker or an H-back type. Bauta does have a strong-arm and is a hard-nosed runner who has passed for 1,006 yards on the season with 13 touchdowns and just four interceptions. Though he still has to learn some of the subtleties of being a quarterback, that's the position he'll start off at in college.

"What Aaron Murray does, I know he's a dual threat as well; he runs the ball well, and throws the ball well. For me, I'm going to strive to be the best quarterback I can be. And in my eyes, I know I can be Aaron Murray and more," Bauta said.

Georgia now has 14 commitments for the class of 2012 and though it is not as stacked as last year's 'Dream Team' was, adds the talented Bauta to a group that includes five-star offensive tackle John Theus and impressive defensive tackle Jonathan Taylor. The Bulldogs did take a quarterback with last year's class and have also received a pledge from 2013 signal-caller Brice Ramsey.

Video of the week

This week was a big one for Belle Glade (Fla.) running back Kelvin Taylor, who broke Emmitt Smith's (yes, that Emmitt Smith) all-time rushing record in the state of Florida on a 388 yard, six touchdown night Friday. The 5-foot-11, 210-pounder now has 8,975 yards and 141 touchdowns for his career and amazingly he's just a junior. He is the son of former NFL and Florida Gators running back Fred Taylor. It appears to be a Florida-Alabama battle for his commitment at this point with the Gators having a bit of an edge obviously.

Below is video of Taylor's run to break the record, a 34 yard scamper for a touchdown followed by him giving his mother the ball. He briefly discussed the record-setting performance here.



Recruiting Roundup

  Pitt commit Rushel Shell also set a record over the weekend, rushing for more than 100 yards in his 39th consecutive game.

  Auburn commit Zeke Pike will enroll early.

  A few notes and some analysis of Oregon recruiting.

  Texas commit Johnathan Gray is getting close to some very impressive records himself.

  Adolphus Washington's visit to Cincinnati went very well.

  Georgia is gaining ground with defensive end Jordan Jenkins after he visited for the Auburn game. The program also recently offered DeVondre Seymour, son of former All-Pro defensive tackle Richard Seymour.



Posted on: November 4, 2011 10:47 am
Edited on: November 4, 2011 10:48 am
 

11/4 Recruiting Roundup

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Some commitments on the Nebraska visitor list this weekend.

Alabama has recruited Louisiana with mixed results.

Maryland, Alabama, Auburn, California, Clemson, Florida State and Miami are finalists for DT Eddie Goldman.

Chris Moody is down to South Carolina, Mississippi State, N.C. State and Memphis but has to decide what position he wants to play first.

 Ohio State's recruiting woes are not as bad as first thought.

 Tennessee commit Dalton Santos will take visits to Arkansas and Texas A&M.

 Georgia is keeping tabs on N.C. State commit Niles Clark.


 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com