football

Around the Southeast: FSU plays with fire

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EachMondaythroughoutthefall,Rivals.comisbreakingdowntheSoutheastRegionrecruitingscenewithnews,notesandanalysis.HereisthelatestfromRivals.comSoutheastanalystWoodyWommack.
Underclassmenwatch
SHunterDaleClickHerearesometopunderclassmentokeepaneyeonfromaroundtheregion:HeretoviewthisLink.,RiverRidge(La.)JohnCurtis(2015)
DaleburstonthescenewithhisperformanceatArizonaState'scampearlierthissummerandisquicklygainingtractionwithschoolsaroundthecountry.Despitejustenteringhissophomoreseason,Dalealreadyhasthreeoffers,afterpickinguponefromFloridalastweek.He'salready6-foot,170poundsanddependingonhisgrowthcoulddevelopintoaneliteprospectateithersafetyorlinebacker.MosteliteplayersfromtheBayouendupstayingclosetohome,butDaletoldRivals.comheplanstolookatschoolsfarfromhome.
"Idon'tseeLSUbeinginthereatalleveniftheydidofferme,"DaletoldRivals.com."Ijustwanttogosomewhereelse,butIwanttostayintheSouthandplayintheSEC."
RB/LB Elijah HoodClick Here to view this Link. Charlotte (N.C.) Catholic (2014)
Hood is starting his junior season, but he's already trimming schools from his list. The running back/linebacker recently named his top five schools, with South Carolina, Clemson, North Carolina, Notre Dame and Virginia Tech making the cut. Hood stood out during the summer because of his terrific physique and fluid motion.
Most schools like him as a running back and he possesses good enough hands to be a threat catching the ball out of the backfield as well. During his sophomore season, Hood rushed for nearly 2,000 yards and scored 35 touchdowns. He's already 6-foot and 215 pounds, and if his growth continues, he could end being a top-level prospect on the defensive side of the ball.
"Linebacker seems to be an easier position for me," Hood told Rivals.com. "My athleticism would set me apart at that position."
Tide snags Walker: AlabamaClick News and Notes Here to view this Link. picked up a big commitment on Friday, as four-star defensive end Demarcus WalkerClick News and Notes Here to view this Link. committed to the Tide on national television. Walker was being pursued by a number of schools, including Florida, LSU and USCClick News and Notes Here to view this Link.. In the end, it came down Alabama's coaching staff and its ability to help turn top high school prospects into NFL talent.
"They have a great coaching staff and you can't not like their record of putting players in the NFL," Walker told Rivals.com about Alabama. "My goal is to play in the league, and they get their players there."
Latest on Gaines: Loganville (Ga.) Grayson defensive back Kasey GainesClick Depending on the weight he plays at in college, Walker could be used as a drop-end, capable of getting after the quarterback or helping in coverage when needed. Walker also occasionally plays receiver for his high school team. Here to view this Link. picked up his first BCS offer last week, courtesy of Penn StateClick Depending on the weight he plays at in college, Walker could be used as a drop-end, capable of getting after the quarterback or helping in coverage when needed. Walker also occasionally plays receiver for his high school team. Here to view this Link.. A high school teammate of Rivals100 No. 1 player Robert NkemdicheClick Depending on the weight he plays at in college, Walker could be used as a drop-end, capable of getting after the quarterback or helping in coverage when needed. Walker also occasionally plays receiver for his high school team. Here to view this Link., Gaines hasn't received much attention from major schools during his career. But while on campus in the spring to look at Grayson prospects, Penn State defensive coordinator Ted RoofClick Depending on the weight he plays at in college, Walker could be used as a drop-end, capable of getting after the quarterback or helping in coverage when needed. Walker also occasionally plays receiver for his high school team. Here to view this Link. liked what he saw in Gaines and invited him to the Nittany Lions' camp in July. Gaines performed well at the camp and Roof informed him of the offer last week. Now the accomplished student must decide between a football career at Penn State, or an academic career at Harvard.
"My biggest decision is going to be whether I want to go to Harvard and get that degree, or play big-time Division I football," Gaines said. "I just have to sit down and discuss it with my family and see."
Because of the recent NCAA sanctions levied against the program, it's clear the Penn State coaching staff has to be even more diligent in identifying prospects to help the program through its four-year probationary period. Gaines said he's honored that the coaches want him to be a part of the process.
Weaver to Vandy: VanderbiltClick "People are saying it's a rebuilding process and I feel honored that they want me to be a part of it and that they chose me," he said.Here to view this Link. continued to add to its impressive 2013 class with the addition of Memphis (Tenn.) Harding County tight end Mack WeaverClick "People are saying it's a rebuilding process and I feel honored that they want me to be a part of it and that they chose me," he said.Here to view this Link. on Wednesday. At 6-foot-5 and 250 pounds, Weaver's size and athletic ability made him one of the Commodores' top targets of the 2013 class. While most schools were recruiting him as a tight end, it's believed that he'll begin his career at Vanderbilt as a defensive end.
JUCO gets Tennessee offer: With in-state rival Vanderbilt going head-to-head for in-state talent, TennesseeClick Weaver had offers from more than 20 schools across the country, but is an accomplished student, and has been high on Vanderbilt for academic reasons. Reeling in Weaver, along with several other big-name prospects this summer, shows that head coach James Franklin and his staff are well on their way to building a successful program at Vanderbilt. Here to view this Link. is reaching to the junior college ranks in an attempt to find a diamond in the rough. Four-star JUCO tight end Beau SandlandClick Weaver had offers from more than 20 schools across the country, but is an accomplished student, and has been high on Vanderbilt for academic reasons. Reeling in Weaver, along with several other big-name prospects this summer, shows that head coach James Franklin and his staff are well on their way to building a successful program at Vanderbilt. Here to view this Link. picked up an offer from the Vols early last week. Sandland is 6-foot-6 and 250 pounds, but he wasn't recruited by any top-tier programs out of high school. That has changed after a solid career at Pierce Community College in Woodland Hills, Calif. Sandland has offers from NebraskaClick Weaver had offers from more than 20 schools across the country, but is an accomplished student, and has been high on Vanderbilt for academic reasons. Reeling in Weaver, along with several other big-name prospects this summer, shows that head coach James Franklin and his staff are well on their way to building a successful program at Vanderbilt. Here to view this Link., OklahomaClick Weaver had offers from more than 20 schools across the country, but is an accomplished student, and has been high on Vanderbilt for academic reasons. Reeling in Weaver, along with several other big-name prospects this summer, shows that head coach James Franklin and his staff are well on their way to building a successful program at Vanderbilt. Here to view this Link., CaliforniaClick Weaver had offers from more than 20 schools across the country, but is an accomplished student, and has been high on Vanderbilt for academic reasons. Reeling in Weaver, along with several other big-name prospects this summer, shows that head coach James Franklin and his staff are well on their way to building a successful program at Vanderbilt. Here to view this Link., Ole MissClick Weaver had offers from more than 20 schools across the country, but is an accomplished student, and has been high on Vanderbilt for academic reasons. Reeling in Weaver, along with several other big-name prospects this summer, shows that head coach James Franklin and his staff are well on their way to building a successful program at Vanderbilt. Here to view this Link. and Florida, among others.
Tight end is a position of need for Tennessee during this year's recruiting cycle, and because he's a December graduate, Sandland would be on campus for spring practice next year. He's already taken official visits to Nebraska and Oklahoma and plans to visit Ole Miss and Florida later this fall.
What I'm thinking …
After originally accepting a commitment from Immokalee (Fla.) safety Mackenro Alexander, the Florida State Seminoles have backed off on the three-star prospect, prompting Rivals.com to remove him from the team's commitment list.
Because of concerns about academics, the 'Noles are not counting Alexander for this year's class, but still plan to accept him if he qualifies, according to sources within the program.
What makes things more complicated is the fact that Alexander's twin brother, Mackensie Alexander, is one of top cornerback prospects in the nation. When Mackenro Alexander committed, he said he didn't expect his decision to affect his brother's college choice. But with the Seminoles backing off Mackenro after he made a public commitment, Florida State could be playing with fire.
The Seminoles are also considered the favorites for four-star defensive tackle Deadrin Senat, who is a high school teammate and friend of the Alexander brothers.
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