Three-Point Stance: Ranking recent commits; Miami, Nebraska keep climbing
Rivals.com National Recruiting Director Mike Farrell’s thought-provoking Three-Point Stance is here as he grades some of the last week’s biggest commits, talks some interesting history for two former super powers and a few surprises in the recruiting world.
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1. The best of a busy week of commits
As I often do after a busy week of commitments, I like to take a look at the big ones and rate them based on their national importance. There were so many this week, I’ll just go with the top 10.
1) DE Ron Tatum, Oklahoma – A flip from Texas to the Sooners leads the list as this recruiting battle between Tom Herman and Lincoln Riley will be epic. Tatum is a very important in-state keep for the Sooners and a little revenge for the flip of quarterback Cameron Rising.
2) CB Al Blades, Miami – Not a surprise at all but still a huge get at a very important position. And a somewhat historic get as well as you can see below. Blades decided to honor his late father with a Father’s Day commitment and his connection to ‘The U’ will make him work harder than most.
3) WR Joshua Moore, Nebraska – Speed, speed and more speed from Texas and perhaps the start of another movement for Nebraska? See below for more about this get.
4) ATH Braden Lenzy, Oregon – Keeping home state speed home is a big deal and the fact that he’s a flip makes it even more important.
5) WR Warren Thompson, Oregon – Behind Lenzy? Only because Lenzy was a flip. This is a huge get from Florida for Willie Taggart.
6) DT Matthew Jones, Ohio State – Whether he ends up playing on offense as now projected or on defense, this yet another talented grab for Ohio State from New York. The Buckeyes have done well in the Empire State.
7) QB Tyler Shough, North Carolina – The next Mitch Trubisky? That’s what Shough and UNC hope, although they’d like to see him impact earlier and I think he will.
8) DT D’Andre Litaker, Tennessee – The Vols have had success recruiting defensive tackles and big linemen in recent years and Litaker has the potential to be a very good one at a position of need.
9) DE Emmit Gooden, Arkansas – An older, more mature and better version of the high school standout we saw in 2016, Gooden should impact right away for the Hawgs.
10) ATH Dakereon Joyner, South Carolina – After his first offer from the Gamecocks in eighth grade, he finally pops and gives South Carolina a future weapon at quarterback.
2. Former superpowers trying to get back to glory days
With Blades and Moore in the top three for commitments in the last week, I thought it would be interesting to see where each stood in our Rivals history at their position for their respective schools. Why? The ‘Canes and Huskers played for the national title in 2002, right around the time Rivals.com online history starts, and both power programs are looking to return to past glory under new coaches who are recruiting well.
Both players rank high historically as Blades (No. 35 in the country) is the third highest cornerback in Rivals history to commit to the ‘Canes behind only Tracy Howard (No. 13 in 2012) and Devin Hester (No. 28 in 2002). This was a bit surprising, although Blades is highly ranked and continually pushing for a fifth star.
What was more surprising was that Moore, who is ranked No. 139 in the nation, ranks third in Rivals history when it comes to Nebraska wide receiver commitments behind 2017 signee Tyjon Lindsey (No. 62) and 2007 signee Niles Paul (No. 73). Interestingly, Manuel Allen, who is also committed to Nebraska, is No. 155 which would put him fourth on the all-time list. This speaks to the recruiting ability of wide receivers coach Keith Williams who has landed three of the top four wide receivers for the Huskers in Rivals.com history in the last two recruiting cycles.
It’s this kind of recruiting for both Miami and Nebraska that will push them back into the national title direction.
3. Another five-star QB back on market and more notes
In addition to so many commitments in the past week, there were also many surprises. Here are a few that stood out.
1) Another five-star QB de-commitment – Matt Corral is the second five-star quarterback de-commitment in as many weeks, joining Justin Fields. This practice is becoming more and more common among five-star signal callers as I wrote last week, but everyone seemed stunned by this one regardless. I’ll do more on Fields and Corral on Thursday.
2) Joshua Moore separates from his twin – There could be a big-time example I’m missing, but even if there is, how often do twin brothers with dozens of offers go to separate schools? Maybe Moore’s brother, Jordan, will flip to Nebraska or maybe Joshua will end up with the Aggies in the end, but right now the twins headed to different schools — a rare occasion indeed.
3) Oregon keeps commitment home – Braden Lenzy’s de-commitment from Notre Dame isn’t stunning with the Irish coming off a 4-8 season and the speedster deciding to stay home, but it surprised me nonetheless. If it was going to go down, I felt it would happen during or after the season depending on how Notre Dame and Oregon did on the field.
4) Former SEC coach turns in a current one – Hal Mumme coached at Kentucky and resigned amid numerous NCAA rules violations, so to hear he’s turning in Ed Orgeron to the NCAA for blocking schools out of Louisiana satellite camps is kind of surprising – and humorous.
5) New camp rule affecting attendance – maybe this shouldn’t be a surprise as the new rule prohibiting people “close to recruits” to get a paycheck working camps has hurt attendance of big-name players. The FSU camp, covered by Florida analyst Rob Cassidy, is an example as it was very light on depth of talent compared to previous years. This rule should probably be looked at.