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4-star RB setting up Spartans visit
Ronnie Walker didn’t need a visit to know what he likes about Michigan State.
The Hopewell (Va.) running back, rated a 4-star 2018 prospect by the 247Sports composite, has seen several Michigan State standouts at his position selected in the NFL Draft. Two recent picks, Le’Veon Bell and Jeremy Langford, immediately stood out.
“[I like] their pro-style offense,” Walker said. “You have the pro-style offense, the school and the coaching staff, and who they’ve been putting in the draft.”
The Spartans offered on Jan. 26, but there hadn’t been much action since. No highly anticipated in-school visit, no announcement of the Spartans’ inclusion in his favorites and no visit planned. Until Monday, when Walker put out a top-10 list with Michigan State included.
— RonnieWalker (@RonnieWalker32) June 5, 2017
In the four-plus months that followed the initial offer, Walker’s rapport with Michigan State defensive line coach Ron Burton has grown.
“He’s a great coach,” Walker said. “I’m building a strong relationship with him, and I’m hoping to get up there soon in June when I make my Midwest trip.”
That proposed trip will include stops at Indiana, Northwestern and Purdue as well, all of which have offered. He hopes to go “probably in a week or two” for that tour.
The two big in-state schools that have offered, Virginia and Virginia Tech, have welcomed Walker in for visits and grown close to the nation’s No. 16 running back. Heading west will allow other schools on his list the chance to catch up.
Academics will play a massive part in his decision because of his dreams of a business or engineering major. Aerospace engineering has caught his eye as a possible post-football endeavor. Walker pointed out another crucial factor, as well.
“How often do they start true freshmen?” he asked. “I want to play as a true freshman, and schools are offering me that — even a chance to start.”
He hasn’t yet had that conversation with Burton, but he plans to. It will have to happen pretty soon. After his tentative visit, Walker hopes to make a decision before the start of his senior season, or by midseason at the latest.
The aforementioned schools, as well as Duke, North Carolina, North Carolina State and Rutgers, will continue their pursuit. The first team All-State running back, in his own words, can do it all.
“I’m an all-down back that can catch, run … and be able to block, which is important to the game.”
2018 class snapshot
Michigan State’s 2018 class has started to take shape. Now, every week leading up to National Signing Day, we’ll give you an update on where it stands and any changes in the last week.
Where it ranks
Michigan State’s 2018 class is No. 38 in the nation and No. 9 in the Big Ten, according to the 247Sports composite rankings.
Michigan State has two pledges from 4-star recruits who happen to be teammates at Pickerington (Ohio) Central.
Trenton Gillison: 4-star TE (Pickerington, Ohio)
Xavier Henderson: 4-star ATH (Pickerington, Ohio)
Michigan State landed its most recent commitment May 29 when 3-star defensive back Michael Dowell announced his plans to join his older brothers, Andrew and David, in East Lansing upon his graduation.
Michigan State’s top uncommitted targets
The following players would be massive commits, if the Spartans could land them.
- DeAndre Square, 3-star OLB (Detroit) — Michigan State has long been among Square’s favorites, in part because his former teammate, Spartans signee Jordan Reid, has been aggressively recruiting him.
- Jacob Isaia, 3-star OG (Las Vegas, Nev.) — Isaia wouldn’t surprise anyone if he chose the Spartans. In fact, he’s starting to look like a must-get.
- Kalon Gervin, 4-star CB (Detroit) — Square’s teammate at Cass Tech, Gervin has been hearing from Michigan State as long as anyone. And since his de-commitment from Notre Dame, the interest has risen.
Breakdown by position
Ohio (4): Michael Dowell, Trenton Gillison, Xavier Henderson, Edward Warinner
Michigan (1): Theo Day
Georgia (1): Chris Jackson