On the banks of the Red Cedar, recruiting never stops. We’re here every step of the way to keep you moving along with it through our daily notebook. Any recruiting questions? Comment below or direct them to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll do our best to get them answered.
The offers just keep rolling out
Michigan State finds itself in good position with four commits to its 2018 class, ranking the Spartans 23rd nationally (and sixth in the Big Ten) per the 247Sports Composite. Though it’s been a quiet last few weeks on the trail, coach Mark Dantonio and his staff are nonetheless off to an impressive start. At this point in the last cycle, MSU only had one verbal commitment.
But the Spartans continue to make moves. In the past week, they have extended nine offers, eight to 2018 prospects. And the most recent two have gone to juniors from the most fruitful state for Michigan State recruiting: Ohio.
On Sunday, Michigan State offered 3-star LB Brian Asamoah of St. Francis DeSales (Columbus). The Spartans had recruited two of his teammates in the 2017 class, Alonzo Booth and Derrius Mullins, though neither pulled in an offer. Additionally, St. Francis DeSales alumnus Austin Andrews plays cornerback for Michigan State and just redshirted in 2016.
Michigan State added another Ohio prospect to the offer list on Tuesday, as 4-star Lakota West (West Chester) LB Xavier Peters announced that the Spartans had offered. Though he called it “The University of Michigan State,” MSU fans will surely forgive.
— xavier peters#1 (@xavierpeters22) March 21, 2017
The 6-foot-4, 220-pound Peters has been on an absolute tear lately, picking up offers from Florida, Indiana, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rutgers, South Carolina, Tennessee and Wisconsin in the last month. Now the Spartans have joined the mix, as well.
Ohio State has not, however. The Buckeyes haven’t offered Asamoah, either. Coach Urban Meyer’s program typically has a monopoly on in-state prospects … when it actually offers them. As long as it doesn’t, Michigan State can feel good about its chances.
The Spartans already hold commitments from 4-star Pickerington Central prospects Trenton Gillison and Xavier Henderson, who attend school about 20 miles from Ohio State. Michigan State also had a commitment from 4-star Dayton Dunbar WR Joseph Scates before the junior reopened his recruitment two days after picking up an Alabama offer.
Michigan State has now offered the top 10 uncommitted prospects in Ohio’s 2018 recruiting class, and 15 of the top 17. Peters comes in at No. 8 and Asamoah at No. 20 among those not currently pledged to a school.
The offers show that Michigan State intends to land an outside linebacker in the 2018 class. It has been in heavy pursuit of 4-star Ohio prospects Dallas Gant and Christopher Oats, as well, but Ohio State has offered and is favored to land both.
Top in-state targets check out ‘Bama
But that all the Ohio work doesn’t mean Michigan State has ignored in-state recruiting. Particularly in the 2019 class.
Michigan State has offered a pair of Belleville sophomores in WR/DB Julian Barnett and offensive tackle Devontae Dobbs. The Spartans, per Belleville coach Jermain Crowell, have recruited the two as hard, if not harder, than any other program.
But they’ll have plenty of competition. The two of them traveled down south to check out Alabama, per a post from Barnett on Tuesday.
— Julian Barnett (@_OfficialJB1) March 21, 2017
And later Tuesday, Crowell shared that Barnett picked up an offer from Auburn. The Tigers (as well as Alabama) had already offered Dobbs, the top-rated sophomore OT according to 247Sports.
Michigan State will continue to be in good position with both players as long as it continues to show the same level of interest. But Barnett, like Dobbs already is, looks headed toward becoming a big-time national recruiting entity.