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Tag:Tom Lemming
Posted on: March 5, 2012 1:03 pm
 

Stanford picks up QB of the future in Ryan Burns

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Stanford has had a national recruiting reach for some time so it's not too surprising to see the Cardinal reach into Ashburn (Va.) and pull a commitment out of quarterback Ryan Burns over the weekend.

"It's a great school academically. It's a great football program with a great coaching staff," Burns told Rivals. "Everything about Stanford is the perfect fit for me."

The 6-foot-5, 220-pounder held offers from Penn State, Tennessee and West Virginia among others. Expected to be one of the top signal-callers in the country, Burns was sold on Stanford after taking another unofficial visit to Palo Alto.

"This is my second trip out here and I fell in love with it the first time I was here last summer," he said. "This time really cemented it in my mind as the place for me."

Burns is the Cardinal's second class of 2013 commitment, joining fellow Virginian and linebacker Doug Randolph. The pair give Stanford, a school that has become a Pac-12 recruiting power, two top players on each side of the ball.

"(Burns) has impressed everyone at camps with his height, arm strength, and overall athletic ability," analyst Tom Lemming said. "Very accurate in short to intermediate passes, he reads defense and shows a coolness under pressure."

Posted on: February 22, 2012 9:20 pm
 

UCLA reaches into Georgia for RB Keyante Green

Posted by Bryan Fischer

UCLA hasn't been shy about looking at talent from the state of Georgia under new head coach Jim Mora and the Bruins returned to the area for their latest pledge in McDonough (Ga.) running back Keyante Green, who committed to the program Wednesday night.

"I was talking to Coach Mora about everything at UCLA and it is there," Green told BruinBlitz.com. "He told me that he can see me playing running back at UCLA and that he can see me being a big part of this football team and be able to help out UCLA, so he offered me a scholarship."

The 5-foot-9, 190-pound back was a top performer during last December's Rising Seniors Bowl and held offers from schools such as Florida State, South Carolina and Tennessee. Green's close friend, quarterback Eddie Printz, committed to UCLA last month and can be credited for turning the coaching staff on to him.

"I called Coach Jim Mora on Sunday," Green said. "I told him that my friend Eddie Printz is already committed to UCLA and he put in a couple of words for me and they saw my highlight."

The second commit from the Peach state, Green becomes UCLA's third overall in the class of 2013. The Bruins only signed one running back last month with the 2012 class.

"He has great vision, balance, surprising strength, moves, and instincts," analyst Tom Lemming said of Green. "He follows his blockers well, can always make the first defender miss, uses the stiff arm to his advantage, and gets a good amount of yardage after initial contact."

Posted on: February 21, 2012 3:43 pm
Edited on: February 21, 2012 5:18 pm
 

Davonte Neal ends the drama, commits to ND

Posted by Bryan Fischer

You can finally close the book on the class of 2012.

The country's lone remaining uncommitted top 100 recruit, Scottsdale (Ariz.) athlete Davonte Neal, ended all of the late drama and committed to Notre Dame after a no-show to a ceremony Tuesday morning.

“Deciding on a college is one of the toughest decisions a young player makes in his life, so we are very pleased with Davonte’s decision to attend Notre Dame,” Brian Kelly said in a school release confirming Neal had faxed in his letter of intent. “Davonte was an electric playmaker in high school and was capable of making the big play any time he had the ball in his hands. He excelled as a receiver, as a running back and as a returner for Coach (Charlie) Ragle at Chaparral High School. I imagine we’ll use him in a similar fashion here.”

The 5-foot-10, 170-pound Neal can play either cornerback or slot receiver but will likely wind up taking snaps on the offensive side of the ball at the next level. His recruitment was kept under the radar for most of 2011 before heating up with late official visits and multiple suitors coming in late to make their pitch. In the end, he delayed his decision 20 days after Signing Day to pick Notre Dame over his other finalists Arizona, Arkansas and North Carolina.

Neal was named a MaxPreps first-team All-American as a defensive back while topping the 1,000-yard mark in total offense to go with 35 touchdowns last season as a senior. Many believed he would stay close to home because of numerous ties to Arizona, including the fact that his high school coach, Rangel, was hired by new head coach Rich Rodriguez before Signing Day and several of his teammates are committed to the program.

Bottom line however, the Irish are getting a great player who is ranked as the number four wingback and 67th overall player in the country.

"He is a receiver who must be double-teamed at all times," analyst Tom Lemming said of Neal. "He comes off the ball quickly with speed and strength, gets in and out of his cuts quickly, catches the ball, and then turns up field in a flash. He always takes what the defense gives him, can catch the ball at its highest points, and once he has secured the ball that's when the fun starts. He can out run almost every back he goes up against and shows excellent open field moves."

Neal's pledge gives Notre Dame 17 commitments for the class of 2012.


Posted on: February 10, 2012 7:34 pm
Edited on: February 10, 2012 7:36 pm
 

Diggs stays home and commits to Maryland

Posted by Bryan Fischer

High profile recruits have increasingly waited until after Signing Day to commit to a school in recent years and with the class of 2012 it was Olney (Md.) athlete Stefon Diggs who kept coaches, fans and recruits wondering which program he would wind up at.

The answer finally came Friday night as the five-star athlete put on a Maryland cap at a local restaurant and committed to the hometown Terps.

Diggs took official visits to California, Florida, Auburn and Ohio State but saved his final trip to Maryland for after Signing Day. The 6-foot-1, 190-pounder is the nation's No. 14 overall recruit according to MaxPreps and ranked as the third-best athlete in the class.

One of the fastest players in the country, Diggs runs in the 4.4 range in the 40-yard dash and can play on either side of the ball as a wide receiver or defensive back. The five-star will likely end up on offense in college after accounting for 1,443 all-purpose yards and 13 touchdowns as a senior, leading Our Lady of Good Counsel to a Washington Catholic Athletic Conference title last season.

Much of the credit in Maryland landing Diggs goes to new offensive coordinator Mike Locksley. The former head coach at New Mexico and offensive coordinator at Illinois is well-known for his connections in the Washington, D.C. area as a recruiter. In addition to Diggs, teammate and the country's 10th-ranked running back Wes Brown signed with the program. Though the commitment is not enough to put Maryland in the top 25 class rankings, it does give head coach Randy Edsall and the program a marquee recruit in 2012.

"On the field he's one of the nation's most exciting ball players, an elite prospect and a difference maker," analyst Tom Lemming said of Diggs. "Exceptional with the ball in his hands, he's a high school superstar be it running with the ball, catching the ball, or picking off a pass. He seems to do everything with ease and is a natural, all around athlete."

The Maxpreps All-American gives Maryland 23 commitments in the class of 2012.
Photo by Jim Stout



Posted on: February 3, 2012 11:37 pm
 

Auburn lands 2nd top 100 OT with Diamond

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

The (arguably) biggest win for Auburn on National Signing Day was landing Maxpreps top 100 offensive tackle Avery Young. But as it turned out, the Tigers had a win just as big waiting for them --and at the same position -- after National Signing Day.

That's thanks to Jordan Diamond, the 6'6", 310-pound four-star tackle from Chicago's Simeon High School who signed with Auburn Friday night. Diamond picked the Tigers over offers from Michigan, Notre Dame, Arkansas and others.

Diamond ranked as the nation's No. 67 overall prospect at Maxpreps and the No. 9 offensive tackle in the class, giving Auburn five members of the Maxpreps top 100, tying them for third-most in the conference behind Alabama and Georgia.

"Auburn is getting a hard, dedicated player with great character," Simeon head coach Dante Culbreath told the Chicago Tribune. "Jordan felt comfortable with the Auburn coaching staff, like here at Simeon. It was a matter of that relationship and how he felt."

From Tom Lemming's scouting report on Diamond:

The No. 1 prospect in the state of Illinois is the prototypical LT. Blessed with long arms and quick feet, he can effectively block on the second level and eliminate linebackers ... He has a take no prisoners' attitude, never lets up, shows good hand/punch in pass protection, can seal and sustain blocks, and he's exceptionally strong at the point of attack. He anchors well and he uses his outstanding athletic ability to slide and mirror and cut off fast edge rushers. One of the most dominating LT's in the country.

Auburn is now poised to make a major post-Signing Day impact, with No. 14 overall athlete Stefon Diggs -- the nation's top remaining unsigned recruit -- also seriously considering the Tigers. Diggs is scheduled to sign Feb. 10.

Relive all the highlights from National Signing Day at CBSSports.com's NSD Central.

Posted on: February 2, 2012 11:31 am
 

VIDEO: Nick Saban on Alabama's recruiting class

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Alabama football head coach Nick Saban joins Tom Lemming, Ron Zook, and Rick Neuheisel to talk about having the top recruiting class and also discuss Alabama's success in recruiting nationally.


Posted on: February 1, 2012 4:27 pm
Edited on: February 1, 2012 5:26 pm
 

Florida State wins big on National Signing Day



Posted by Chip Patterson


Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher injected new life into the Seminoles' football program a year ago, grabbing top recruits at nearly every position on the field and finishing with a top three class. After a few 2012 verbal commits decided to look elsewhere, it appeared as though Fisher and his staff might not be able to recreate the top ranking of 2011 National Signing Day. Even worse, the Seminoles might fall behind Miami in the ACC.

Note to self: never doubt Jimbo Fisher and his staff on the recruiting trail.

Florida State arguably was the biggest winner in the ACC on National Signing Day, securing commitments from six players in Tom Lemming's Top 100 and moving above Miami to No. 6 in the CBS Sports National Signing Day Top 25. Only Alabama and Ohio State have as many top players in their 2012 recruiting class as the Seminoles.

The day began at 9 a.m. when Florida State's staff got to watch defensive end Mario Edwards (No. 4 overall prospect) physically sign his letter-of-intent on national television. Edwards, along with defensive end Chris Casher, were going to be the backbone of a strong group of defensive prospects. With just Casher and Edwards on board to join star quarterback Jameis Winston, the Seminoles already had a Top 10 class.

Then things began to start falling Florida State's way when defensive tackle Eddie Goldman (No. 17 overall prospect) announced his decision to join the Seminoles, giving the camera a big smile and tomahawk chop. Around the same time, Miami verbal commit Reggie Northrup, the No. 14 inside linebacker in the class of 2012, flipped his commitment to Florida State. For the second year in a row, National Signing Day surprises were favoring Florida State.

Then with the bases loaded, Florida State hit a grand slam with the commitment of Notre Dame decommit Ronald Darby. The two-sport athlete from Potomac, M.D. gave credit to the Florida state coaching staff for making Tallahassee feel like home. Darby will have the opportunity to run track at Florida State, where he said he hoped to improve "as an athlete and an as a person."

With Goldman, Northrup, and Darby all joining an already highly ranked class - and only losing defensive end Dante Fowler - Florida State avoided a let down from the memorable 2011 National Signing Day. Once again, Jimbo Fisher and his staff were able to put in the work to secure the big names at the last minute. All that is left for the good folks in Tallahassee to do is receive that letter from Jameis Winston. Winston told ESPN, "I'm a 'Nole," and said he planned to send his letter in when he returned home.  The quarterback also said he had worked hard to recruit Ronald Darby to join him at Florida State.

After watching Darby's announcement later in the day, Florida State fans already feel like the pieces are in place for something special in 2012.

For more on Florida State check out Seminoles RapidReports. Keep up with all the latest announcements around the nation throughout the day at Signing Day Central.

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Posted on: February 1, 2012 1:48 pm
Edited on: February 1, 2012 1:48 pm
 

Stanford lands top ten tackle Andrus Peat

Posted by Tom Fornelli

David Shaw and Stanford picked up a big commit on Wednesday, literally and figuratively, when offensive tackle Andrus Peat announced he'd be attending Stanford.

Peat is ranked as the #8 overall player by MaxPreps in the 2012 class, and is ranked second amongst offensive tackles, trailing only Georgia's John Theus.

The Arizona product stands at 6-foot-6 and weighs 310 pounds. He's the younger brother of Todd Peat Jr., who committed to play at Nebraska last season and just finished his freshman season with the Cornhuskers. Nebraska had been in the running for Andrus, as was USC, but it seems the appeal of attending school at Stanford was too great to reunite the brothers once again.

Tom Lemming says Peat is "as nimble-footed as they come" and could be "a college All-American and future All-Pro."

Keep up with all the latest from National Signing Day at CBSSports.com's National Signing Day Central.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com