Fact or Fiction: Illinois should feel confident about Malik Elzy
Rivals national recruiting analyst Clint Cosgrove along with Doug Bucshon from OrangeAndBlueNews.com, Jason Killop from SpartanMag.com and Kyle Kelly from InsideNDSports.com tackle three topics and determine whether they believe each statement is FACT or FICTION.
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1. Illinois should feel confident about landing Malik Elzy.
Cosgrove's take: FACT. Let me start out by saying that Malik Elzy was phenomenal at the Rivals Camp Series in Indianapolis, and when the film of his performance makes its way to the college coaches, there is a good chance we see additional suitors enter the mix. As things stand today, however, I do feel that Illinois should be confident about its chances of landing Elzy. Illinois has made Elzy a priority and he has a close relationship with wide receiver coach George McDonald. McDonald played at Illinois himself, has coached in the NFL and has a track record of producing NFL talent. Illinois is in dire need of a difference maker at receiver and Elzy would have a chance to be that guy right off the bat. While Elzy is far from an Illinois lock, I believe the coaching staff has done enough to feel confident about its chances.
Bucshon's take: FICTION. Signs point to Illinois being in good position with Elzy and it should be cautiously optimistic, but I’m not ready to make the leap to “confident.” Elzy does have an official visit to Illinois locked in for early June, and he’s been on campus in Champaign multiple times. That’s a great sign, as is the moderate success Bret Bielema has had with in-state talent. The Illini recently picked up a commitment from four-star athlete Kaden Feagin and would love to keep that momentum going. Still, it’s never easy for Illinois to go head-to-head with the likes of Michigan, Notre Dame and some of the other top programs on the long list of offers for Elzy. He also has an official visit lined up to Cincinnati. There’s still work to do and the Illini will need to convince Elzy that staying home, where he’s a top priority, is the right move. So far so good.
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2. Michigan State receiver target Fredrick Moore was the most underrated prospect at RCS Indianapolis.
Cosgrove's take: FACT. I considered Justin Taylor, Rocco Marcelino and a handful of other players for most underrated at the camp, but at the end of the day we have Fredrick Moore rated criminally low. The St. Louis (Mo.) Cardinal Ritter standout has become one of the hottest prospects in the Midwest and his camp performance left little question as to why his recruitment has blown up as much as it has. Moore runs phenomenal routes and was a matchup nightmare for nearly every defensive back that he faced on the day. With a Rivals Rating of 5.5, he is currently a low three-star prospect, but the reality is that he is at minimum a low four-star prospect. We knew he was underrated heading into the camp, but his performance proved to be even better than I could have imagined.
Killop's take: FACT. Moore was impressive Sunday and exceeded my expectations. The St. Louis receiver ran solid routes all afternoon and was able to create separation. He also utilized his speed blowing by would-be defenders with ease during 1-on-1 reps. He used his 6-foot-1 frame and long arms as leverage, along with showing off solid ball skills against a wide range of defensive backs. Moore deservingly earned runner-up honors to four-star WR Malik Elzy, who walked away with the MVP award.
3. Brandon Davis-Swain's performance at RCS Indianapolis shows that he has the potential to become an All-American at Notre Dame.
Cosgrove's take: FACT. As long as he continues to develop at his current rate, there is little question in my mind that Brandon Davis-Swain can become an All-American caliber player at Notre Dame. He is only a sophomore in high school and already has the skill-set and frame to become a lethal pass-rusher at the next level. Notre Dame plays on national television weekly and when you combine that level of exposure with the sack numbers Davis-Swain can potentially put up, the sky's the limit as to the number of awards he is capable of winning once he gets on campus in South Bend
Kelly's take: FACT. After seeing Davis-Swain at the Indianapolis Rivals Camp Series and Columbus Under Armour Next camp, I see five-star potential. Davis-Swain dominated the competition and was named defensive line MVP runner-up at the RCS. He is already 6-foot-4, 240 pounds, and his size and length are off the charts. As a sophomore, Davis-Swain had 18 sacks, and he’s only getting better. A lot goes into being an FBS All-American, but his potential makes it an easy prediction.