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.
Jaylan Franklin’s visit to Michigan State on Saturday wasn’t particularly groundbreaking or eye-opening. He’s been there almost 20 times now.
But with each trip, the 3-star Carlson (Mich.) junior athlete has his strong opinions about MSU affirmed. The Spartans started recruiting him as a sophomore, before anyone else, and soon moved to the top of his list.
“It’s my favorite,” Franklin told Land of 10. “It’s been my favorite for a long time. Getting to know the people there, the atmosphere, everything is just great. I love everything about Michigan State.”
On visits such as the one Saturday, Franklin doesn’t find himself talking to just one or two coaches. He talks with Curtis Blackwell, the director of college advancement and performance. He talks with quarterbacks coach Brad Salem and running backs coach Dave Warner.
Franklin said he knows everyone on staff.
That makes sense for a prospect who could play a number of different spots. At 6-foot-4, Franklin’s length makes him a desirable recruit. He hears mostly about receiver and outside linebacker from Michigan State, but the Spartans would likely experiment with him at a number of spots.
“I just want to be a playmaker on the field,” Franklin said. “That’s my main goal.”
And of course, another big goal would be to earn an offer from the Spartans. He holds offers from Cincinnati, Eastern Michigan, Kentucky, Minnesota and Toledo. He knows the feeling of getting that news, but he still can’t foresee what kind of reaction an offer from Michigan State would elicit.
“I honestly don’t even know what I would do,” Franklin said. “I would just be in shock. That’s a dream like those things you dream up, and you never really expect that type of stuff to happen to you.”
Franklin doesn’t know where he’s at in his pursuit of an offer but said he thinks he’s “somewhere close to it.” He said the Michigan State staff will evaluate his junior year tape, review his sophomore tape and get back to him.
In the meantime, Franklin’s season is done, so he’ll relax a bit before gearing up for basketball. He’ll also hit the road. He visits Northwestern on Saturday and Kentucky on Nov. 19, when it faces Austin Peay. Franklin’s brother Marvin is a running back for the Governors.
Louisville, Michigan, Notre Dame, Purdue and Virginia have also shown interest. Franklin wants to choose a school he can look back on many years from now and be proud.
“(I want to go) somewhere I could stay for four years and be comfortable for the long term saying that’s where I went to school,” he said. “Having that follow you for the rest of your left, it’s kind of got to be held high.”
Spartans offer 4-star USC commit
Michigan State has some explaining to do to Hunter Echols’ family and friends.
How could any other gift for his 17th birthday top what the Spartans gave him? On Tuesday night, as his day wound down, the 4-star USC defensive end commit picked up an offer.
— HUNTER (@hunter_tyb) November 2, 2016
Echols, a senior at Cathedral (Calif.), is rated the No. 9 weakside defensive end in his class. Michigan State has been putting an emphasis on the position in recent weeks, having offered Texas A&M commit Tyree Johnson and 3-star uncommitted defensive ends Bobby Roundtree and Kofi Wardlow.
Third Spartans commit named to All-American bowl
On Thursday, 3-star West Des Moines (Iowa) Valley quarterback Rocky Lombardi made it a trio of Michigan State commits selected to play in the Blue-Grey All-American Bowl.
— Blue-Grey Football (@BlueGreyFB) November 2, 2016
Lombardi joins 4-star offensive guard Kevin Jarvis and 4-star receiver Hunter Rison. The game will be held on Jan. 14, 2017, at the Jacksonville Jaguars’ EverBank Field.
So far this year, Lombardi has led Valley to a 9-0 record and a No. 1 ranking in Iowa.
On the prep scene
We’re on to the second round of the playoffs in Michigan. If you’re willing to put in the miles, here’s what you should consider watching:
Cass Tech at Dearborn, Friday: On the Cass Tech side, you can see 5-star receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones, 4-star linebacker DeAndre Square and 4-star cornerback Kalon Gervin, all top targets for Michigan State. Dearborn, on the other hand, fields 3-star Spartans offensive line commit Mustafa Khaleefah.
Oak Park at King, Saturday: It’ll be a battle of super sophomores in Oak Park quarterback Dwan Mathis vs. King quarterback Dequan Finn and linebacker Tyrece Woods. Oh, there’s also 4-star lineman Marquan McCall for Oak Park and 4-star cornerback Ambry Thomas for King.
Novi at Detroit Catholic Central, Friday: This is about one player. Austin Brown, a sophomore quarterback for Catholic Central, has led the Shamrocks to a 10-0 record and looks to keep it going in the grind that is the Division I playoffs.
All ratings are from the 247Sports composite rankings unless otherwise noted.