BigRedReport.com (Nebraska Cornhuskers)
Over the past week the Nebraska Cornhuskers have really beefed up their recruiting coffers by adding four verbal commitments.
The first player to make the call was four-star linebacker Will Compton, a 6-foot-2, 220-pound linebacker from North County High in Mo.
Compton originally made a commitment to sign with the Huskers, but after the coaching shake-up he took another hard look at Illinois and Missouri. In then end he remained all Nebraska.
"I am going to Nebraska," Compton said. "I just got done talking with Nebraska to say that I am staying committed.
"I called Bo Pelini and Mike Ekeler and they thought I might be going somewhere else. Ekeler was stuttering and didn't know what to say to me.
New head coach Bo Pelini and his staff kept it hot through the weekend as well, and racked up three more players who made their verbal commitments after seeing the campus first-hand on an official visit.
Courtney and Steven Osborne a pair of brothers from South Garland High will add some much needed depth and size to the wide receiver and safety positions.
Courtney Osborne, a 6-foot-2, 175-pound safety said that there were a few things that stood out to him the most about the trip to Nebraska this weekend.
"I liked the academics, facilities and the coaches the most," Courtney explained.
Courtney also said that he was a bit surprised about the success of the academic program at Nebraska.
"The academics that Nebraska has surprised me a little bit."
Courtney is being looked at to play on the defensive side of the ball while his brother Steven, a 6-foot-4, 190-pound receiver will be on the offensive side.
"Nebraska is looking at me to play the strong safety position. My brother is a wide receiver."
The Cornhuskers did not stop there as the next player to make the call was three-star prospect Antonio Bell, a 6-foot-2, 180-pound receiver from Mainland High in Daytona Beach, Fla.
It’s something for a Florida kid to commit to a school in the Midwest , especially since this is his first official visit of the recruiting season. Bell said that from everything he experienced, be it his talks with the coaches or his former prep-teammate offensive lineman Cruz Barrett, any hesitation Bell might have had from simply not knowing the place or the people, was gone almost the instant off the plane.
“The coaches were great. The facilities were like nothing I have ever seen and Cruz, he just said it was great there, that I’d love the coaches and that things were going to be a lot better around here than before,” Bell said.
“It’s kind of what I wanted to see and feel, but you don’t know that is going to work out. It did, though. I’m glad to say I’m a Husker.”
Keep an Eye On: WR Khiry Cooper
It looks like Cooper, 6-foot-2, 175-pound receiver from Calvary Baptist in La., has already narrowed his list down to two schools and Nebraska is one of them despite the fact he has never set foot on campus for an official visit. It will be a battle of new coaching staffs as Bobby Petrino’s Razorbacks are the other school at the top of Cooper’s list.
KStateFans.com (Kansas State Wildcats)
Kansas State has already compiled a terrific class of junior college athletes that will be able to come in right away and add some depth to team that is hungry to be instantly competitive in the Big 12 North race, and they added two more JUCO names to the commitment list this week.
The first junior college player to pull the trigger was four-star wide receiver Attrail Snipes, a 6-foot-1, 180-pounder from Bakersfield Community College in California. Joining him on the commitment lost was three-star defensive tackle Daniel Calvin, a 6-foot-4, 315-pounder who selected the Wildcats over Texas Tech.
The “cats” also added two more prep commitments from the “Sooner State” in East Central running back Kenny Session and Jenks defensive tackle Tony Gillespie.
Session, a 5-foot-9, 190-pund running back from East Central High is an interesting story as he claims that he made a commitment to KSU over a month ago, but chose to keep the news out of circulation to the recruiting services.
“I have made a commitment to Kansas State,” Session reported. “Actually I have been committed for about a month now, but it was something that we decided to keep on the down low.”
“Really Kansas State has been the most loyal to me throughout the whole process. They have been holding out for me this whole time since I came up there last summer for camp. They are trying to make sure I had a way to get up there and play.”
The Wildcats kept the hot streak going in Oklahoma when they added a commitment from the area’s most dominant defender, Tony Gillespie, a 6-foot-0, 300-pound three-star defensive tackle from Jenks High.
Gillespie earned the nickname “The Beast” after Scout.com got a hold of his film earlier this year and he definitely played like a beast in the state playoffs. In the playoff run he racked up 50 tackles to help lead a stiff defense and the Trojans on to a State Championship.
“(At KSU) What you get is real, down-to-earth, tell it like it is, and it's what makes them unique and the right program for me," Gillespie informed.
Keep an Eye On: DT Simi Kuli
The man, the myth, the legend….. Kuli, a 6-foot-4, 270-pound five-star defensive tackle from El Camino Junior College has not had a lot to say since his de-commitment from Nebraska, but a strong JUCO presence and an early opportunity for playing time put KSU in position to make a strong play.
HawkeyeNation.com (Iowa Hawkeyes)
The Iowa Hawkeyes pulled down three commitments this week as well. In the past they have dome a great job recruiting Ohio and they kept that streak alive when they added a commitment from Glenville athlete William Lowe.
Lowe, 5-foot-9, 170-pound athlete is an explosive player who could come in and compete for a number of spots on the offensive side of the ball or in the defensive backfield. He will also be the type of player that will be a great asset on special teams.
Lowe says that he prefers the cornerback position to safety, but he will do what Iowa asks of him. The 5-foot-10, 170-pound prospect said that he ran a 4.38 forty yard dash time at Akron’s football camp this past summer.
”I can play physically but I also have the speed to hang with the fast receivers. And Iowa said that I could come in early and compete for time. That was important to me.”
The next player to pull the trigger was Jake Reisen from Keokuk High in Iowa, who received a grey-shirt offer from the Hawkeyes. Instead of counting towards this class Reisen will count towards the 2009 scholarship count and begin his scholarship career next January.
“It’s hard, but I can still apply for the fall semester, live in Hillcrest, be around the guys for the most part,” Reisen said. “I just won’t be able to work out, be a part of the team in the fall semester.”
Two years ago, Julian Vandervelde made a similar commitment. Just days before fall camp began, Julian received word there was an open scholarship, and immediately joined the team. Reisen said that it may work out in the same way for him.
“If a couple guys de-commit, I could definitely be scholarship come fall,” he said. Coming off a season with approximately 140 tackles, 90 solo, and four interceptions, Reisen was seeing grayshirt interest from both Iowa State and Iowa, as well as a full and immediate scholarship offer from Northern Iowa. In the end, he chose to stick with the hometown team.
The big news literally came when Montana big man Casey McMillan, a 6-foot-4, 275-pound defensive tackle made his decision to become a part of Kirk Ferentz’s football program.
Many schools were trying desperately keep McMillan off of the radar, and the fact he was in Montana helped, but it was the Hawkeyes made a huge impression on him when they stepped to the plate with a scholarship.
”So once I met with Coach Ferentz, he extended the offer and I committed on the spot. He was pretty excited,” McMillan explained.
”He said that I was just the kind of guy they were looking for; my toughness and work ethic is what they look for in recruits.”
However it was not all good news for Iowa as they lost one from their commitment list to the Missouri Tigers when Texas defensive end Marcus Malbrough, a 6-foot-5, 230-pounder made a switch.
“I was committed to Iowa and I really didn’t see myself going there. Plus I wanted to stay in the Big 12 and I thought Missouri would be a great place for me to do that. I’m a Texas boy and there are a lot of Texas teams in the Big 12,” Malbrough explained of his thought process.
Keep an Eye On: WR Derek Winter
Winter, a 6-foot-0, 190-pound receiver from Plant High in Fla., had a great trip to Iowa City last weekend for an official visit. It may be hard to lure one out of the South when schools like Auburn and Georgia Tech have also offered, but the Hawkeyes are definitely strongly in the mix.