NCF On The Trail: Boise State Broncos

A rival recruiter believes Kevin Sumlin’s not-so-subtle message to former Texas A&M pledge DaMarkus Lodge could come back to haunt the Aggies. Plus, one of Florida’s top defensive commitments appears to be looking around.

States of strength: Texas RBs 

May, 15, 2014
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When it comes to running backs, the state of Texas is loaded. Ten running backs represent the Lone Star State in the ESPN 300. Of those 10, five are committed. A total of seven running backs in the state have reported FBS commitments.

ESPN 300 RBs from the state:

No. 50 Ronald Jones II: Ranked the nation’s No. 3 running back, Jones is an explosive, game-changing back who -- as scary as it might sound -- will only get better. Jones committed to Oklahoma State on April 6 and finished his junior season with more than 2,400 rushing yards and 39 touchdowns.


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The quarterback dominoes continue to fall out West, as Brett Rypien, the nation's No. 132 overall prospect and No. 6 pocket passer in the 2015 ESPN Junior 300, announced his commitment to Boise State over the weekend.

It marks an important commitment for Boise State and new head coach Bryan Harsin, who made a strong run for Kyle Carta-Samuels late in the 2014 recruiting cycle but eventually lost him to Washington. Now, Harsin grabs a commitment from the No. 1 prospect in Washington and is able to make a significant dent in the Pac-12's attempt to run the table in West region quarterback recruiting.

Already the Pac-12 holds commitments from the nation's No. 1 (Josh Rosen, UCLA), No. 2 (Ricky Town, USC) and No. 7 (Jake Browning, Washington) pocket passers in the 2015 class, and Rypien looked destined for Washington State after Washington landed a commitment from Browning. Rypien's uncle, Mark Rypien, was a star for the Cougars before beginning a successful NFL career.

The younger Rypien also held offers from Arizona State, Mississippi State, Oregon State and Washington State, but the 6-foot-2, 176-pound quarterback was swayed by the new coaching staff at Boise State, which has already shown it won't hesitate to go after the top recruits in Pac-12 states, as well as Texas.

Rypien set the Washington state record with 613 yards passing in a game last season. He is commitment No. 4 for Boise State and will now turn his attention to recruiting other prospects from Washington. With his commitment to Boise State, Washington and Washington State could have a fight on their hands for in-state prospects, as Rypien has already reached out to recruits such as Chico McClatcher in an effort to bring more talent to Boise State.

Five of the top six quarterbacks in the West region have made their commitments in what is a stellar year for quarterback recruiting in the area. Brady White is the top pocket passer left on the board in the West. Dual-threat quarterback Sheriron Jones and pocket passer Kyle Kearns join White as the West region ESPN Junior 300 quarterbacks still uncommitted.
The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Monday’s offerings: After a few weeks to recover from the holiday that was signing day, it’s always interesting to analyze the data to get a better understanding of what really happened. This past Friday, I took a look at the teams that saw the biggest gains from 2013 to 2014. But what were some of the teams that were on the other end of the spectrum?

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ESPN 300 DB talks flip to Boise State 

January, 4, 2014
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When Marcel Yates left Texas A&M to take the defensive coordinator position at Boise State, there was immediate chatter.

Would Dylan Sumner-Gardner (Mesquite, Texas/West Mesquite) follow Yates?


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Flowers says no to BSU, yes to Sooners 

November, 6, 2013
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Dimitri Flowers (San Antonio/Churchill) needed about as much time as it takes to microwave a cup of coffee to find a new home following his decommitment from Boise State early Wednesday evening.


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WR Fields commits to USC

October, 24, 2013
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The white sleeves three-star receiver Shay Fields Jr. (Bellflower, Calif./St. John Bosco) wore on his arms throughout the spring and summer were not only a fashion statement, but they were also indicative of where his heart was.

The sleeves, with a USC Trojans logo plastered front and center, were a visible representation of his goal. Yet, for Fields, heading to USC was not a possibility until he landed the coveted scholarship offer earlier this month.

It did not take long for Fields to jump on the offer, as he announced his commitment to the Trojans on Thursday.

"I feel great now," Fields said.

The process developed quickly. Shortly after the firing of Lane Kiffin, USC coaches Tee Martin and Ed Orgeron attended a St. John Bosco game in which Fields caught four touchdowns. A couple days later, Fields had the offer he had hoped for. He visited the Coliseum for USC's game against Arizona on Oct. 10 and came away impressed by the newfound intensity.

Fields visited Boise State this past weekend and announced his decommitment from the Broncos upon returning home. His sights were clearly set on USC.

For the Trojans, who signed only one receiver in the 2013 class in four-star prospect Steven Mitchell (Pasadena, Calif./Bishop Alemany), it's an important step following recent decommitments.

Fields became the eighth member of the 2014 class and second from St. John Bosco, joining four-star defensive end Malik Dorton.

Early Offer: Starks back in action 

October, 16, 2013
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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: After transferring to Cherry Creek in Colorado, four-star running back Nathan Starks was finally able to get back on the field last Friday night, and that could help his recruiting stock; USC continues to make a strong local push; and the battle for one of the nation’s top defensive backs is getting heated.


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The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's latest feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: the LSU-TCU game this weekend in the Metroplex has major recruiting implications for both the Tigers and Horned Frogs; Florida State QB commit J.J. Cosentino is working to bring even more Pennsylvania talent to Tallahassee; and Washington will unveil the new Husky Stadium to a host of impressive visitors.

LSU, TCU have chance to make Lone Star statement
On Monday, I wrote about the top college football games recruits will watch closely each week, and one game that I had a tough time leaving off the list was the LSU-TCU tilt Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. LSU has always recruited well in the Lone Star State, and a victory against a quality team in front of a lot of Texas recruits surely will give the Tigers even more fuel for future efforts. For the Horned Frogs, it’s the perfect opportunity to make a major statement to recruits that they’re ready for prime time. Gary Patterson is one of the best recruiters in the nation, and the way he can find under-recruited kids in Texas is something to marvel at. But since arriving in the Big 12, Patterson has won some bigger recruiting battles against the upper-echelon Big 12 programs. A win against LSU will make it easier to win more of those battles.

videoThe Early Offer is RecruitingNation's latest feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings. Today's offerings: Florida pulled off a trifecta Monday that established Travaris Robinson as a leading candidate for recruiter of the year, Baylor landing K.D. Cannon is not a small thing, and who has the respect of recruiters in the Mountain West.

Big Monday for Gators


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ESPN 300 DT Poona Ford commits

August, 7, 2013
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Highly-coveted defensive tackle Poona Ford (Hilton Head, S.C./Hilton Head) pledged to sign with Louisville Tuesday, according to multiple sources.

"I guess I just had a feeling. The feeling you get when you know you're welcome," he told The State. "I went up there for a visit, and they talked to me about coming in my freshman year and playing my very first game at home against Miami."

Ford selected the Cardinals over scholarship offers from Arizona, Arkansas, Boise State, Charlotte, Florida Atlantic, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Kansas State, Marshall, Massachusetts, Missouri, North Carolina State, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, Purdue, South Carolina, Tennessee, Toledo, UCF and Utah State.

Last fall, the 6-foot, 285-pound four-star terrorized opponents to the tune of 154 total tackles, 44 tackles for loss and 10 sacks.

Ford, ranked No. 275 nationally, is now Louisville's highest-rated defensive pledge. The Cardinals have 24 verbals for 2014.

Busy Saturday for Arizona

July, 28, 2013
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The Wildcats picked up four pledges on Saturday. According to multiple reports, Darrell Cloy Jr. (La Habra, Calif./La Habra), J.R. Hunt (Chandler, Ariz./Chandler), Kwesi Mashack (Norco, Calif./Norco) and Trevor Wood (Scottsdale, Ariz./Chaparral) committed.

Cloy is a 6-foot-3, 226-pound tight end-H, rated as a three-star prospect and the 14th-best player at his position in this class. Colorado and Colorado State were his other scholarship offers. Michigan, Nebraska, Oregon, UCLA and Washington expressed some interest.

Hunt, a 6-3, 199-pound safety, selected Arizona over offers from rival Arizona State and Montana. ESPN RecruitingNation rates Hunt as a three-star.

Mashack also carries a three-star grade. Hawaii was his other offer, while California, San Diego State and UCLA showed interest in the 5-9, 182-pound athlete.

Following his evaluation, Wood might end up as the highest-rated prospect of the group. The 6-6, 240-pound rising senior tight end was also offered by Alabama, Arizona State, Boise State, Kansas State, Michigan State, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oregon, Oregon State, UCLA, Utah and Washington.

Arizona's class has grown to 18 following the flurry over commitments this weekend.

Broncos pull Lone Star State lineman

July, 27, 2013
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Class of 2014 offensive tackle Ryan Griswold (Pearland, Texas/Pearland) is on board with Boise State, according to multiple reports.

Air Force, Houston, Louisiana Tech and Louisiana-Lafayette also extended scholarship offers to the 6-foot-4, 255-pound prospect. Arkansas showed interest.

Griswold is pledge No. 10 for the Broncos.
Four-star outside linebacker Jordan Perez (Carlsbad, Calif./Carlsbad) holds nine scholarship offers. His 10th could finish his recruitment.


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Connor Humphreys (Portland, Ore./Central Catholic) has been busy this offseason. The ESPN 300 defensive end has taken unofficial visits to Arizona State, Boise State, Cal, Stanford, Tennessee, UCLA, USC and Washington, and he will be on the road again next month, with trips planned to Arizona, Arizona State and Wisconsin.

The 6-foot-3, 268-pound Humphreys put an emphasis on early trips, as he would like to make a commitment before the start of his senior season.


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