June 24, 2008

Football Recruiting Snapshot

Football recruiting is massive and hard to keep track of. For those of you who don't pay attention to recruiting on a daily basis I want to give you a quick snapshot.

We are about in the same spot we were a year ago. At this point in 2007 we had 4-star locked up, a handful of 3-star kids mostly from Minnesota and many athletes from around the country putting the Gophers on their short lists. To date in 2008 we have a 4-star locked up, a handful of 3-star in state kids and many studs from around the country mentioning the Gophers along with Ohio State, Florida, Michigan, Georgia, etc.

I sense some anxiousness and eagerness to get more commitments this summer, but as I looked back the bulk of our commitments came in September thru November. So the hope is to just get on the radar of kids and stay in the hunt.

For Tim Brewster to land a second consecutive top 25 recruiting class winning will be an absolute necessity. You can sell kids on playing time and building for future championships while you generate a 1 win season for a little bit but eventually they'll tune you out for teams who are actually winning. Brewster doesn't have to win the Big Ten, but showing improvement and demonstrating that you actually are building something will go a LONG way towards winning recruiting battles with the traditional big dogs.

With that said here is a brief snapshot of who we have, who we are after and who this guy desperately wants to see wearing a Gopher hat come signing day.

Pos. SizeStarsHometownAlso Offered
Hasan Lipscomb RB 5'11", 201 4 Houston, TX (Cypress Ridge) Nebraska, TexA&M, Baylor, ISU
Moses Alipate QB 6'5", 235 3 Bloomington, MN (Jefferson) Wash St, Colorado
Josh Campion OL 6'5", 265 3 Fergus Falls, MN interest from Wis, Notre Dame, Michigan
Victor Keise WR 6'1", 160 3 Coral Springs, FL (N. Broward) interest from NC St, Miami, Conn
Ed Olson OL 6'6", 270 3 Mahtomedi, MN N. Ill, interest from PennSt, Mich, Col, Ill
Nick Rengel TE/WR 6'3", 225 none Sartell, MN Buffalo, UCF, N Ill, NDSU

Lipscomb and Alipate highlight the recruiting class thus far.

ESPN Insider has Lipscomb on their top 150 watch list and had this to say...
Follows his blocks well and runs with good vision. Shows good lateral quickness and outside speed stretching the zone run and turning the corner. Can be shifty through the initial traffic flashing good stop-start skill and body control making defenders miss. Shows a burst and sneaky extra gear when he finds an open seam. Not a burner, but displays good speed in the second level to separate.
As a junior Lipscomb rushed for 26 TDs on 1,625 yards. He is originally from New Orleans but was displaced because of Hurricane Katrina. Because of his New Orleans roots, LSU pursued but never offered.

Alipate is the flagbearing Minnesota kid of 2009. The QB from Jefferson is kind of an intriguing recruit. His high school team was not very successful and he didn't put up great numbers. But when at camps and other opportunities to show his skills he usually does very well. As a junior he was invited to the Under Armor Junior Combine in January, which says a lot about his talent and upside. Scout has him as a 4-star recruit and ESPN can't say enough good things about him.
For a pocket passer with the great size that Alipate possesses, he is a really good athlete with some footwork and movement skills you don't see from a dropback passer. He is very competitive, shows solid overall natural tools and a strong arm.

Overall, Alipate's competitiveness is evident and he has the measurables, arm and athleticism to become an excellent player at the next level. He could play in the spread and could also play as a pure drop back guy which gives him some real versatility and value.
It should be fun to see him compete with 2008's QB recruit, MarQueis Gray, to lead the Dunbar Spread into the Rose Bowl.

Gopher Nation Wish List...

Pos Size Stars Hometown OFFERS NOTES
1 Michael Carter CB 5'11", 154 4 Pompano Beach, FL FL, Clem, Georgia, Miami, Aub and others cousin to Tyrone Carter
2 Ra'Shede Hageman TE 6'6", 252 3 Mpls (Washburn) FL, OSU, Neb, Wis, Ill, Iowa, Mich St a must have for Brewster
3 Ronnie Wingo Jr Ath 6-3, 210 4 St. Louis, MO Bama, Mizz, Tenn, OK, Neb, Kan, Ill, Iowa, Ark planning to visit, would be a great get, maybe RB
4 Chris Davenport DT 6-4, 318 5 Mansfield, LA FL, LSU, USC, Tenn, Tex, Mich, Bama, everybody I'm not holding my breath
5 Craig Drummong DE 6-5, 260 4 Chicago LSU, FL, OSU, USC, Tenn Top 5 DE - We have our work cut out for us here
6 Bryce McNeal WR 6-2, 170 4 Mpls (Breck) committed to Michigan We win, Mich loses things might change here
7 David Gilbert DE 6-4, 215 4 Oakland Park, FL Wis, L'ville, Pur, Scar, UCF, Mich St, etc. As of 4/30 had 3 offers, now has 12+
8 TyQuan Hammock ILB 6'1", 220 3 Fort Wayne, IN L'ville, Mich St., Ind, MAC schools 13 sacks, 164 tackles as JR, cousin to brother to ast coach Thomas Hammock
9 Chris Williams CB 5-11, 185 4 Cincinnati, OH WV, Ind, Cincy (has academic hurdles) "The thing that shocked me was I didn't follow Minnesota football and they told me they went 1-11. I was like 'wow.' I mean if a I believe a school can really turn things around, and they want me to help I, would be interested in that."
10 Nosa Equae DE 6'4", 235 3 Mansfield, TX KU, Col, Iowa, Pur, L'ville Kan and Col are top 2, is planning to visit
11 Rodney Smith WR 6-6, 202 4 Miami, FL Aub, FSU, OleMiss, Mizz, Tenn, many others 3.0 GPA, but kind of a longshot imo
12 Nat Berhe S 5-11, 160 3 Colton, CA New Mex, SDSU 2.9 GPA
13 Matt Garin DE 6-4, 220 3 Apple Valley, MN AZ St, Ore St, Stan, Wash St, AirForce, MACs plenty of Pac 10 schools but no other BCS schools, interesting
14 Anthony Jones OLB 6-2, 200 3 Chandler, AZ AZ, ASU, OreSt, Wash St
15 Dan Orseske P 6-3, 195
Chicago Northwestern We need him and I think we'll get him
16 Artice Kellam S 5'11", 180 NR Miami, FL OleMiss, SoCar
17 Dwayne Difton WR 5-11, 166 4 Ft. Lauderdale, FL BC, Pur, Sflor, S Miss, Syracuse seems high on Auburn if offered
18 Jaz Reynolds WR 6-3, 180 3 Aldine, TX Col, Kan, Neb, NW, Virg, SMU, Bay, Vir his HS QB is heading to Kansas, not likely but who knows

This list is very fluid and I gave preference to guys I thought we had a remote chance at landing. But I am far from knowing anything. As I prefaced this is just a snapshot and wanted to keep people informed (if you want greater detail I suggest you pay the subscription fees to something like Rivals, Scout or ESPN Insider).

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