We all know that Purdue signed its smallest football recruiting class ever today, but here are some interesting notes:
-Purdue picked up a late commit from JuCo LB Kaulana Judd. I don't know much about this kid other than he's already 22, so he should be strong enough to play right away, I can't find any info on offers, he's from Hawaii and played his JuCo ball at Fullerton C.C.
-Danny Hope has been widely-vilified by media outlets ranging from EsPN's Urban Meyer to local Florida papers. All sources universally seem to think Hope lands some place between Hitler and Stalin following taking the scholarship offer to A.J. King off the table weeks ago.
The one thing that no one seems to be talking about is that, from what I understand, King was offered a Grayshirt from Purdue, which he rejected before the first of the new year. Let's keep in mind, Dwayne Beckford was once a grayshirt...so it's not a career killer.
Regardless of anything else, the pulling of King's scholarship for the '11-'12 season has turned out to be a bad PR move. I haven't yet heard where King will land.
-One of the guys that there's been a lot of talk about in this year's class is Fishers, Indiana product, Randy Gregory. He's a very good athlete. If you've gone to see Gary Harris play basketball this season, you've seen Randy Gregory play along side him. Gregory plays center currently. And by many accounts can be dominant on the hardwood when he sets his mind to it. While 6'6" is too small to play in the BT, his size and feet should make him a player that can do big things on the gridiron...if he gets the chance at Purdue. Regardless, his 210-pound frame needs a year or two to bulk up.
There are a few academic concerns swirling around Gregory...hopefully he makes it to campus.
An interesting sidebar about Gregory's signing is that it was late due to the fact that his school was closed today and administrators had to make a special trip in just so he could get his letter faxed to Purdue this morning.
-Even though Bellomy won't be at Purdue, Hope foresees using multiple quarterbacks on the field at the same time in the fall...let's hope some of the formations/plays are a bit better thought out than some of what we saw when Robinson was on the field.
You can check out this year's full class here.
Here are some guys that stand out to me:
-Brandon Cottom had a ton of solid offers. He hails from Pennsylvania, which is a good start, and has good size- 6'3" 235. I'm not sure where he'll be playing by the end of his career, but I think he might see the field next season on special teams because of his combination of solid speed and size. Hope says there's a possibility for him as a Fullback or H-Back.
-Akeem Hunt, Frankie Williams & Raheem Mostert are all very quick and have breakaway speed. Hunt & Willias were RBs in high school, Mostert a WR. On paper they're all very similar, but you don't know how that translates to a kid in uniform. I think they might all be able to be used on special teams, specifically returning kicks, right away. I really like Williams ability to break tackles and change direction in traffic. Mostert probably has the best break-away speed. Hunt can make people miss, but will either need to get bigger or change positions to see the field offensively next fall.
-Robert Kugler has decent size, good speed and good hands. And if Purdue plans on running two-tight end sets, he might be forced on the field right away. Remember, Purdue lost three tight ends last season including Adams and Lindsay.
-Shane Mikesky is a guy that I'm really excited to see play. Based on his highlight reels, he seems to be cut from the same mold as John Standeford- Deceptively-fast, long strides, good size and great body control. I honestly hope he doesn't have to play and can redshirt- that'd probably mean some of Purdue's young WRs have come along.
-Armstead Williams might end up being the jewel of the class by the time his time on campus is over. He had offeres from Iowa, Michigan, Wisconsin and others and chose Purdue. After watching some of Williams film, I think he might be very-well suited as a DE eventually...kind of like Cliff Avril came in lean to Purdue and grew into the role, Williams has a frame that should be able to pack on good weight.
There's a lot of talk around about this class being the last-rated recruiting class in the B1G. Here are some other things to think about before ruling this group out:
-Purdue's recruiting class of 1997 was also last in the conference...they did OK.
-As Rivals ratings go, this class average rating places it in the top-3 for Purdue classes in the last decade. Not sure if that's an indictment of Purdue's recruiting or that builds up this year's class.
-Once again, there's a lot of speed in this class...not much bulk. I'm not sure if I like this year-in, year-out.
-The late losses of a couple players sting, but it happens. If you study this group as I have, you can see there are some gems that were pursued hard by some big time programs. I'd rather have a solid kid who can develop, who really wants to be a Boiler, than any player who really doesn't want to play for Purdue...that's just me.