Posted on: April 28, 2011 11:26 am

Top recruits will be tuning in to the NFL Draft

By MaxPreps' Stephen Spiewak

The fact that it will be televised during primetime tonight is both indicative of, and responsible for, the surge in popularity of the NFL Draft.

While professional football fans watch to see which top college players their favorite team will land, there's another segment of the football population paying close attention to the draft: top high school recruits.

Many of the nation's most coveted high school players pay close attention to the draft for reasons most fans watching never have to consider: Are the colleges recruiting them successful at producing NFL draft picks?

Schools with top projected draft picks often know how to leverage that status with recruits.

"Colleges assume that most recruits want to play in the league, and I think that's true for a majority of recruits," said Mullen (Denver) quarterback Cyler Miles, the nation's No. 70 recruit, with offers from Colorado, Washington, Clemson, Notre Dame and others.

The NFL Draft provides tremendous free advertising for colleges, as it is impossible to pay for the groundswell of hype and attention that a school receives when one of its players is expected to be a top pick. It's not fleeting, either; schools often refer back to their track record of producing draft picks through the years.

With the first round of the draft set to get underway tonight, MaxPreps contacted several top recruits to find out how closely they'd be paying attention to the NFL Draft and what kind of factor it has been in their recruitment.

Read more on MaxPreps...

Posted on: April 11, 2011 11:51 am
Edited on: April 11, 2011 11:52 am

South Carolina nabs linebacker for commit #2

Posted by Bryan Fischer

A busy weekend at South Carolina was capped off with the commitment of Atlanta (Ga.) linebacker T.J. Holloman Sunday night. The Gamecocks' annual Spring Game was Saturday and Holloman was on hand to take in the exhibition as part of an unofficial visit to the school. 

"I came back from the visit and talked with my family about it all day (Sunday)," Holloman told TheBigSpur.com. "They told me they were in love with it and they liked everything that (USC head coach) Steve Spurrier and his program had to give. I was in love with it. I just felt like a decision was made already and why not do it today."

The 6-foot-3, 220 pound linebacker also had scholarship offers from Louisville, Illinois and N.C. State with several others showing interest. However there were several factors that ultimately led Holloman to choose the Gamecocks and end his recruitment early.

"The graduation rates at South Carolina are real high," he said. "They get players to the NFL. I really like Spurrier's focus. His first focus is on schoolwork. They won a lot of games last year, were 6-1 at home and won the SEC East. I think they are an up and coming program and I want to be part of a good program both on and off the field."

Holloman is the second commit for South Carolina's class of 2012. He is also a high school teammate of five-star cornerback Geno Smith.

Posted on: March 23, 2011 12:40 pm

Simmons gets release from North Carolina

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Class of 2011 defensive tackle Delvon Simmons has received his release from North Carolina, his high school coach Jim Ward confirmed to RedRaiderSports.com.

Simmons, who surprisingly signed with the Tar Heels on Signing Day despite not taking an official visit to the school, asked for his release following the departure of line coach Brian Baker. Baker was on staff for only a month before returning to the NFL to become an assistant coach with the Dallas Cowboys.

Though it is not known if Simmons was given an unconditional release or released to a specific set of schools, sources told CBSSports.com that Texas Tech and USC would pursue the talented defensive tackle and are considered the favorites to land him.

Simmons was MaxPreps' eighth-ranked defensive tackle for the class of 2011.

Posted on: January 24, 2011 7:16 pm
Edited on: January 24, 2011 7:40 pm

NFL All-Pro players were a hodgepodge as recruits

Posted by Bryan Fischer

The NFL's 2010 All-Pro team was released this morning and like we did yesterday with the NFC Championship game, looking over this list of players as recruits shows the long and winding road that some took to the top of the NFL mountain top. Of those on the list, only Haloti Ngata was listed as a five-star player coming out of high school (several, like Julius Peppers and Ed Reed entered college slightly before the star rankings became especially popular). Some, like Jahri Evans or Clay Matthews, didn't even pick up a Division-I offer. Quite the list and an interesting mix of stories from high school to the All-Pro team.

QB Tom Brady – Lettering in two sports in high school, he headed out of state to play football at Michigan out of San Mateo (CA). Brady’s career path has been well documented ever since, being picked by the Patriots in the 6th round of the 2000 draft and grabbing three Super Bowl trophies after getting the starting job.

RB Arian Foster – A three-star running back from San Diego (CA), Foster held only a handful of offers out of high school. He headed to Tennessee after strongly considering Oregon and West Virginia.

RB Jamaal Charles – Highly recruited out of south Texas, he committed to the Longhorns in 2005 as part of a highly regarded class that won a championship that season. He was a four-star recruit according to Rivals.

WR Roddy White – A two-time all-state receiver from South Carolina, White was one of the top receivers in the South coming out of high school and headed to UAB for college. He proceeded to set several school records for the Dragons.

TE Jason Witten – A Tennessee native who played with the Vols, Witten was part of some incredibly talented teams that consistently challenged for SEC championships.

OL Jake Long – A top five player in the state of Michigan, Long was a four-star tackle that became the cornerstone on Wolverine teams that headed to Rose Bowls, not Gator Bowls.

OL Joe Thomas – One of the top tackles in the country and a four-star recruit according to Rivals, Thomas had his pick of just about every school in the country. He considered Notre Dame, USC, Georgia Tech and Nebraska before settling on the Wisconsin Badgers.

OL Logan Mankins – An all-league player coming out of Catheys Valley (CA), Mankins was lightly recruited out of high school but turned into a dependable starter in college before moving on to the NFL.

Jahri Evans – Evans has had a very roundabout path to the NFL. After suffering from a broken leg that took away most of his scholarship opportunities coming out of high school, Evans attended Bloomsburg University on an academic scholarship. He eventually was drafted in the 4th round by the Saints and has started every game since.

OL Nick Mangold – A Rivals four-star and third-ranked center in the class of 2002, he went to Ohio State before moving on to become the leader of the Jets’ powerful rushing attack.

DE John Abraham – He only played high school football for one season but his explosiveness earned him a scholarship to South Carolina. He wrapped up his college career second on the Gamecock’s career sack list and was a first round pick by the Jets in 2000.

DE Julius Peppers – Recruited heavily in both football and basketball, Peppers turned down playing basketball at Duke to play both sports at North Carolina. A Parade All-American in high school, Peppers has been heavily pursued at every level he’s played at.

DT Haloti Ngata – Perhaps the biggest recruit to ever attend Oregon (literally and figuratively), Ngata was ranked behind only Vince Young in the class of 2002 coming out of high school by Rivals.

DT Ndamukong Suh – The Gatorade Player of the Year in Oregon, Suh wound up at Nebraska despite just about every Pac-10 program making a run at him. A tough loss for in-state program Oregon but he wound up making everybody regret not landing him when all was said and done.

LB Clay Matthews - An unranked linebacker in the class of 2004 coming out of high school, he was able to walk-on at USC mainly because of his last name. By using the weight room to transform himself, Matthews eventually received a scholarship in 2006 from the Trojans.

LB James Harrison – Due to discipline problems, Harrison ended up at Kent State instead of a local power like Ohio State. He was overlooked by the NFL as well, going undrafted before finally latching on with the Steelers.

LB Patrick Willis – Recruited by David Cutcliffe and Mike McIntrye at Ole Miss, Willis didn’t really bloom until Ed Orgeron took over and brought out the best in him. A three-star out of high school, Willis’ talent is now evident anytime you watch football on Sundays.

LB Jerrod Mayo – One of the top players to come out of Virginia in 2004, Mayo signed with Tennessee as part of a top ten class that failed to pan out. Mayo did turn out, eventually becoming a first round pick by the Patriots.

CB Nnamdi Asomugha – Highly recruited out of Los Angeles, Asomugha was one of the top corners in the country after grabbing seven interceptions his senior year in high school.

CB Darrelle Revis – A two-sport athlete in football and basketball in high school, Revis was a three-star defensive back that selected nearby Pitt in 2004. A few years later and Revis Island is now a five-star resort where wide receivers go to get shut down.

S Ed Reed – An all-state player out of Louisiana, Miami stole both Reed and Reggie Wayne from LSU and Gerry DiNardo’s backyard. Reed headed to ‘The U’ to win a national championship and become one of the great safeties in the game.

S Troy Polamalu – Almost wasn’t recruited by USC were it not for his uncle, a former USC player and eventually a coach on the Trojans staff, Kennedy Pola. Polamalu played special teams early his freshman year and by the time he became a starter his sophomore season, Polamalu was known for his play as much as his hair.

Category: NCAAF
Tags: NFL
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