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Tag:National Signing Day
Posted on: January 30, 2012 6:59 pm
 

DE Junior Gnonkonde picks UNC after visit

Posted by Chip Patterson

Former Georgia Tech commit Junior Gnonkonde verbally committed to North Carolina on Sunday, and is expected to sign with the Tar Heels on Wednesday.

The 6-foot-5, 225 pound weakside defensive end was committed to the Yellow Jackets before head coach Paul Johnson withdrew the offer for academic reasons. The Lanier County (Ga.) High School standout was one of the earliest commits in Johnson's 2012 class, but the head coach informed the family on Jan. 20 that Gnonkonde's test scores were too low.

Gnonkonde visited North Carolina this past weekend, meeting with North Carolina's athletic director and director of admissions in addition to head coach Larry Fedora. After the visit, Gnonkonde selected the Tar Heels.

“He met with the head coach before the basketball game and said ‘I’m comfortable; I don’t need to look anywhere else,’” said Lanier County athletics director John White, who is also Junior’s legal guardian.

“I tried to get him to wait and Junior said that he didn’t need to wait, so he went ahead and committed.”

White informed the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that North Carolina will not require Gnonkonde to retake any tests, but the defensive end will do so anyway.

Gnonkonde picked North Carolina after receiving offers from South Carolina, Wake Forest, Central Florida, Syracuse, and Louisiana Tech.

For more on the Tar Heels' 2012 recruiting class, check out the ACC Signing Day Overview.

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Posted on: January 30, 2012 1:19 pm
Edited on: January 30, 2012 1:21 pm
 

Florida DB flips from Georgia Tech to Miami

Posted by Chip Patterson

Defensive back Antonio Crawford, from Tampa, Fla., has flipped his commitment from Georgia Tech to Miami.

“It was a pretty hard decision because I’ve been committed to Georgia Tech for a long time.” Crawford told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I got to know the coaches and I got to know some of the other recruits. It was pretty tough to do it, but they respected my decision and I respected them for that.”

Crawford had been committed to the Yellow Jackets since last summer, but received a last-minute offer from the Hurricanes last week and took a recruiting trip over the weekend. After a weekend in Coral Gables, Crawford returned home with a change of heart.

Georgia Tech assistant Charles Kelly hoped that Crawford would remain committed to the Yellow Jackets after the visit, but apparently took the news of the de-commit well on Sunday.

"No, I'm not surprised [by Georgia Tech's reaction]," Crawford said. "The Georgia Tech people are real classy. They are respectable people, and I know they wouldn't do anything like be angry and mad at me."

For Miami head coach Al Golden, Crawford's commitment is another payoff from an aggressive recruiting effort that began in early December. When the school made themselves ineligible for postseason play due to the ongoing NCAA investigation, Golden and his staff hit the recruiting trail hard in an effort to build for the future.

Miami's 2012 class, currently with 31 verbal commitments, is ranked No. 6 nationally by MaxPreps. For more on the Hurricanes, check out the ACC Signing Day Overview.

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Posted on: January 27, 2012 10:54 am
Edited on: January 27, 2012 11:19 am
 

Non-BCS Signing Day Overview



Posted by Chip Patterson


National Signing Day is almost here and recruits across the country are gearing up for plenty of last-minute pitches and school visits as head coaches look to shape their program for years to come. For a snapshot of the Non-BCS recruiting scene, we will take a close look at independents Notre Dame and BYU, as well as the five schools headed to the Big East in 2013: Boise State, Houston, San Diego State, SMU, and UCF.


MaxPreps.com Top 25 Team Rankings, Non-BCS
College Commits Top 100 Moving
14. Notre Dame 17 4

Top storylines

1. How quickly will Gunner Kiel see the field at Notre Dame?

One of the storylines of Gunner Kiel's recruitment was the star quarterback's inability to make up his mind. Some have suggested that playing time is a big concern for Kiel, and there is no guarantee on when he may take the starting position. The first-string quarterback spot is there for the taking, but head coach Brian Kelly has already shown a happy trigger finger when it comes to switching signal-callers. How is Kiel, who seemed to be always eyeing greener grass, going take it if and/or when he is sent to the pine.

2. Will there be an effect from the assistant coach changeover at Boise State?

2012 kicked off with Chris Petersen losing two valuable members of his coaching staff to BCS schools. Will Muschamp tapped offensive coordinator Brent Pease to join his staff in Florida, then special teams coach Jeff Choate left to join Mike Leach's staff at Washington State just a week later. Both coaches played a big role in recruiting the 2012 class, and there was some concern that the staff shakeup could have an effect in recruiting. A firm commitment from QB Nick Patti after Pease's move to Florida was a good sign for Boise State. This class still stacks up well against previous groups, but you wonder if/when we will start seeing an on-field effect of this assistant exodus.

3. Schools on the move

Navy recently added themselves to the group of schools headed towards the Big East, leaving Army, BYU, and Notre Dame as the last FBS independents after 2015. The Black Knights have been fairly grounded in their independent status, but both the Irish and Cougars have flirted with the notions of joining one of the power conferences. In announcing their move to the Big East, Navy school officials mentioned the scheduling difficulties associated with being an independent. As more schools hold future dates for conference play, it had become increasingly difficult to assemble a competitive schedule without that built-in slate of opponents. If the Big 12 comes calling again to BYU, Navy's move might have the Cougars reconsidering their options.


Top Players to Watch
Name Pos Committed
2. Gunner Kiel QB Notre Dame
13. Nelson Agholor ATH Uncommitted
16. Arik Armstead OL/DL Uncommitted
22. Jarron Jones OL/DL Notre Dame
27. Ron Darby ATH Uncommitted
30. D.J. Foster RB/DB Uncommitted
39. Tee Shepard CB Notre Dame
45. Deontay Greenberry WR Notre Dame
116. Ronnie Stanley OL Notre Dame
119. Sheldon Day DL Notre Dame
123. Troy Hinds DE BYU
148. Elijah Shumate RB/S Notre Dame
164. Tanner Mangum QB BYU
175. Justin Ferguson WR Notre Dame
 

Assistant recruiters of note:

Bob Diaco and Mike Denbrock, Notre Dame
Sean Beckton, UCF
Carlton Hall, Houston
Tony White, San Diego State
Jeff Reinebold, SMU

Non-BCS school-by-school
School Commits Top Players Notes
- Team page
- Commitment list
16 QB Nick Patti
LB Ben Weaver
OL Travis Averill
The Broncos have been able to hold on to most of their prized prospects, despite the changeover of assistants.  CB Anthony Standifer is still on the radar, and could strengthen the secondary for the Class of 2012.
- Team page
- Commitment list
15 DE Troy Hinds
QB Tanner Mangum
LB Butch Pauu
The Elite 11 MVP Tanner Mangum headlines a solid class for Bronco Mendenhall.  Hinds is a tall, athletic pass rush specialist and was considered by many the best prospect in the state of Utah.
- Team page
- Commitment list
20 DT Donald Hopkins
DT Tomme Mark
RB Terrence Taylor
Not a lot of star power, but still one of the best classes in Conference USA.  The strength of the group is along the offensive and defensive lines.  Left on the board for Tony Levine is Oklahoma State de-commit OL Tim Hines.
- Team page
- Commitment list
16 QB Gunner Kiel
OL/DL Jarron Jones
CB Tee Shepard
WR Deontay Greenberry
It was already a nationally ranked class, and then Kiel flipped from LSU to make it one of the best in the land.  Lots of talent at the skill positions and at 6-foot-6, 295 pounds; Jones is one of the most impressive linemen in the class.
- Team page
- Commitment list
17 DB Kendrick Mathis
OL Kwayde Miller
OL Austin Maass
 It's a good thing the Aztecs are welcoming some new transfers, because head coach Rocky Long's class is looking a little thin compared to last year's class.  Mathis is a dynamic in-state prospect (Ventura, CA), who also spent time playing quarterback in high school.
- Team page
- Commitment list
23 DB Daniel Roundtree
OL Seaver Myers
LB Damien Neroes
LB Prescott Line
JUCO prospect Daniel Roundtree has enrolled and will be ready to contribute almost immediately, while June Jones' primary goal is to keep Myers from flipping to Kevin Sumlin and Texas A&M at the final hour.
- Team page
- Commitment list
15 QB Jonathan Wallace
WR Taylor Oldham
TE Blake Davis
Wallace, a 6-foot-2, 203 pound dual-threat quarterback from Alabama is the prized recruit in George O'Leary's class.  Wallace will be joined by a host of talented in-state prospects, including a pair (Davis and OL Kelly Parfitt) from the same school in Delray Beach.




Posted on: January 10, 2012 11:59 am
 

Live Chat: Bryan Fischer talks Recruiting

Join recruiting blogger Bryan Fischer for a live chat at 1 p.m. ET to talk about the Top 25 Recruiting Rankings, which has Alabama at No. 1.

Can Alabama and Nick Saban dominate the college football world for the next few seasons? How are USC and Oregon doing recruiting wise? What should we expect on National Signing Day on Feb. 1? Join us to answer these questions and more.


Posted on: March 2, 2011 12:37 pm
 

Kouandijo's view of Iowa changed with rhabdo case

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Last month on National Signing Day, Cyrus Kouandijo became a bit of a household name in the college football world. The offensive lineman out of Maryland high school football powerhouse Dematha originally committed to Auburn on signing day. He then quickly changed his mind, and over the next week there was plenty of speculation as to why Kouandijo had changed his mind, and where he'd end up.

Eventually Cyrus would choose Alabama, where his older brother Arie Kouandijo had spent the 2010 season as a redshirt lineman. Just another chapter in the Alabama-Auburn rivalry. Of course, there was a third school that had been in the running for Kouandijo's services, and that school was Iowa. In fact, in a recent interview with The Sporting News, Kouandijo says that Iowa was the front-runner pretty early, but it turns out that the outbreak of rhabdomyolysis amongst 13 iowa football players after an offseason workout swayed his decision.

"At first I really, really, really wanted to go to Iowa," Kouandijo answered when asked where he was leaning in the fall. "I even told my best friend that I was going to Iowa. But when everything went down with them with the workouts and all, that was different. I had a bad vibe when I went there. Alabama may be far from home, but Iowa—living-style wise—it’s just out there and just not me. I wouldn’t have been able to thrive in that environment. I love their coaches and I love their team, but it was really just out for me."

I must admit that I do find it odd that Kouandijo's view of Iowa City itself changed. After all, the school was located in the same place before so many football players had to be hospitalized. So it seems that Kouandijo began looking at the school through a different lense following the rhabdomyoysis outbreak. After all, it's not like Tuscaloosa or Auburn are in the middle of giant metropolitan areas themselves.
Posted on: February 3, 2011 12:18 am
 

MaxPreps Final Signing Day Team Rankings

The College Team Recruiting Rankings are assigned by a formula created by CBS College Sports Researcher Brian Raab.

College   Ranking Commits Top 100 Movement Highest Recruit
1 Notre Dame 23 8 - Aaron Lynch (#22)
2 Florida State 24 7 James Wilder (#2)
3 Alabama 19 8 Hasean Clinton-Dix (#24)
4 Auburn 25 5 Cyrus Kouandjio (#3)
5 LSU 22 7 La'El Collins (#7)
6 Clemson 26 6 Stephone Anthony (#4)
7 Georgia 25 5 Ray Drew (#18)
8 Southern California 26 6 George Farmer (#20)
9 Ohio State 24 4 Braxton Miller (#8)
10 Texas 22 4 Malcolm Brown (#10)
11 Tennessee 23 4 Antonio Richardson (#40)
12 South Carolina 30 1 Brandon Shell (#17)
13 Oregon 21 2 De'Anthony Thomas (#15)
14 Illinois 32 1 Reilly O'Toole (#99)
15 Florida 18 4 Jeff Driskel (#14)
16 Washington 25 2 Austin Seferian-Jenkins (#27)
17 Virginia 25 1 Darius Jennings (#71)
18 Iowa 24 1 Rodney Coe (#73)
19 North Carolina 22 2 Marquise Williams (#80)
20 California 18 2 Viliami Moala (#34)
21 Arkansas 25 1 Brey Cook (#29)
22 Mississippi 19 1 C.J. Johnson (#37)
23 Michigan State 21 1 Lawrence Thomas (#21)
24 Wisconsin 21 1 Melvin Gordon (#89)
25 Stanford 19 1 Wayne Lyons (#45)
Posted on: February 2, 2011 10:45 pm
Edited on: February 2, 2011 10:46 pm
 

Video: Big East Stumbles On Signing Day

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Why did the Big East perform so badly on signing day? CBS College Sports analyst Tom Lemming has the answers.

More Recruiting Coverage  can be found here at CBSSports.com
Posted on: February 2, 2011 9:31 pm
Edited on: February 2, 2011 10:29 pm
 

Big Ten Signing Day: Winners/Losers

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Overview: Overall it was a pretty good recruiting season for the Big Ten. There weren't a whole lot of shocking decisions on National Signing Day, though both Ohio State and Iowa were able to pick up some key members of their 2011 class.

Winners

Ohio State - Ohio State generally leads the Big Ten in recruiting every season, and 2011's class doesn't seem to be any different. While the Buckeyes had a strong class coming into Wednesday's festivities, getting Curtis Grant to commit during the day put this class over the edge. Grant joins what should be a strong class on defense, where the Buckeyes will look to replace Cam Heyward with guys like Kenny Hayes, Chase Farris and Steve Miller in a few years. Of course, Jim Tressel didn't concentrate solely on defense, as the Bucks picked up quarterback Braxton Miller as the possible successor to Terrelle Pryor in 2012.

Iowa - The Hawkeyes and Kirk Ferentz never seem to put together a jaw-dropping class, yet every year they tend to find themselves ranked in the top 25 classes. This year is no different, as MaxPreps has Iowa at 17, and the Hawkeyes signed 23 players. The final player was DT Darian Cooper, who chose Iowa on Wednesday, and comes from the same school Iowa landed RB Marcus Coker from last season. Kirk Ferentz generally doesn't go for flash as much as he finds players he can mold and fit into his system at Iowa, but you should expect to grow more familiar with names like Rodney Coe, Ray Hamilton, Austin Blythe and Jordan Walsh in the next few seasons.

Nebraska - Welcome to the Big Ten, Nebraska. The Cornhuskers had a good class coming into National Signing Day, but added the crown jewel on Wednesday with running back Aaron Green. Green combined with all the beef Bo Pelini is bringing in on the offensive and defensive lines should have his team ready for its new home. Of course, the wild card in all of this is quarterback Bubba Starling. He's the type of player that could make this a great class, but a lot of people seem convinced that Starling will never play a down in Lincoln, as he's expected to be a first round draft pick in the MLB draft this summer.

Losers

Penn State - There are plenty of talented players coming to Happy Valley next season. Defensive ends Deion Barnes, Shawn Oakman and QB/DB Bill Belton are strong, athletic players. The problem with Penn State's class this season is its just not up to snuff for Penn State. A 16-member class just isn't what the Nittany Lions are accustomed to, and you really have to wonder how much longer Penn State can afford to stand by Joe Paterno. When two of your best recruiters, Larry Johnson Sr and Tom Bradley, are spending time looking for new jobs instead of working recruits -- which may have cost Penn State Ishaq Williams -- then things need to be fixed. This may be Joe Paterno's last Signing Day at Penn State.

Michigan - Don't get me wrong, Michigan has a nice class. A class that got even better on Wednesday with tight end Chris Barnett, but I'm putting them in the losers section based on what this class could have been. The Wolverines lost a lot of talent after firing Rich Rodriguez, and Brady Hoke just didn't have a chance to keep guys like Dee Hart in Ann Arbor. As a result, a potentially great class can only be considered solid at this point.

Purdue - Listen, nobody was expecting Danny Hope and Purdue to blow the doors off of this class, but while they put together a nice class, it's certainly not the type that will help propel Purdue up from the bottom half of the Big Ten. Plus, anytime you're a school that needs as many athletes as it can get, getting banned from a high school in Florida is probably the worst thing you can do.



More Recruiting Coverage can be found here at CBSSports.com
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com