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Fact or Fiction: Coronavirus will disrupt recruiting calendar

National recruiting director Mike Farrell and national recruiting analyst Adam Gorney tackle three topics daily and determine whether they believe the statements or not.

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1. Commitments will slow down because of the coronavirus.  

Farrell’s take: FACT. This is such a non-priority in the world compared to the health and safety of many, but we write about recruiting and this aspect of college football will be affected. March through June is a huge period for many commitments not only for 2021 prospects but 2022. Coaches also hit the road and unofficial and official visits are numerous. But with travel limited for the time being, that should slow things down quite a bit and could make for a busy fall.

Gorney’s take: FACT. Schools across the country are canceling visits to their schools, they’re pulling coaches off the road and that is going to grind recruiting to a halt for everyone. Prospects are not going to go on as many visits, coaches are not going to be at as many schools, offers will slow down and thus commitments will take a pause as well. Once the virus settles out, we could see a huge ramp-up in visits - and especially in pledges - but that won’t be in the short term.


2. Georgia is a real threat for DT Maason Smith.  

Maason Smith
Maason Smith (Nick Lucero/

Farrell’s take: FACT. Smith was thought to be a battle between LSU, which is in his home state, and Alabama. But Georgia has emerged as one of his top two schools, according to sources.

Can the Bulldogs really steal a coveted player from Louisiana? I still say Smith ends up at LSU in the end, but I never count out Kirby Smart and company these days, and the addition of Scott Cochran from Alabama could impact this. How? Just his energy and what he brings to the table, even though he’s not recruiting defensive linemen.

Gorney’s take: FICTION. Georgia could definitely do it because Smart is such a fantastic recruiter, but it would buck history in a huge way and I’m not prepared to say it’s going to happen. Every No. 1 prospect in the state of Louisiana rankings - dating back to 2012 (Landon Collins) - picked LSU. That is a tremendous run for the Tigers, and it’s going to continue with Smith. The Bulldogs have dipped into the state of Louisiana for some defensive backs and some others in recent years but they don’t have a huge footprint there. Alabama is a major threat to LSU, but my bet is Smith stays home.



3. Nico Collins is the best wide receiver returning to the Big Ten.  

Nico Collins
Nico Collins (AP Images)

Farrell’s take: FICTION. Nico Collins is a talent, and if he can get some stable quarterback play he could be amazing. But let’s not forget Rashod Bateman at Minnesota, Chris Olave at Ohio State and Rondale Moore coming back from injury at Purdue. When I put out my top 10 list of returning wide receivers, Michigan fans barraged me about Collins because he was missing, but the Big Ten has a ton of wide receiver talent and these guys could be better.

Gorney’s take: FICTION. There is really no justification other than being a die-hard Michigan fan to make the argument that Collins is the best returning receiver in the Big Ten. Bateman had far better numbers, Olave had an excellent season and is poised for more and we all know what Moore can do in Purdue’s offense when he’s healthy. I would doubt quarterback play for the Wolverines is going to be markedly better this season, so Collins just doesn’t fit this bill.