How is the new recruiting class looking?

I don’t know much about the new class of recruits except that most of them are from Utah. I know there are some good teams and players in the beehive state and I know Sitake is supposed to be a great recruiter.

Is this going to help BYU down the road? Are the Cougars extending themselves to find that diamond of a player like Jamal Williams? Where are the players from Texas? One? and California has 5, but half the players are from Utah?

I think if you want to play football at BYU, the best thing to do is move to Utah. Oh well, we will see.

Just because they are Utah does not mean they are not good… Utah has some outstanding high school football programs. Several has national rankings and have beaten a lot of teams from around the country,. Utah is becoming a recruiting site for many top level D1 Schools

One thing recruit Ellis (?Corner Back) out of California sounds interesting… they say he hits as hard as Dewey Gray… That would be a nice change of pace.

Yes, I know and understand that. But a full half from one, relatively low population state? I know there are some really good players that come from Utah and I know they have some good teams.

In fact, I think it was the season before last, East high school from SLC came out and played Corona Centennial and they only lost like 42-13. I have an old friend who is an equipment manager for East and he was confident they would win. Oh well…

Seriously though, I know they have good teams and players in Utah but there are a lot of good teams and players in other states too.

Besides that, we already know they have the best basketball players in Utah, just ask the LP3 and Rose… :smile:

Watch the Hudl highlights on D’Angelo Gunter. He is a corner and looks big on the field, gets in press coverage and literally runs guys right off their routes, and levels anyone in his area. Against HS receivers he looks the way the Michigan DBs looked against us two seasons ago–physical and totally dominating. I like it.

BYU’s class this year ranks 66 nationally. That’s going in the wrong direction from last year. Last year, BYU finished at 51 with only a month of recruiting to work with. We were all expecting recruiting to improve over last year. A lot of the recruits from last year were Bronco’s so now we have a better look at Sitake’s staff and their success. Frankly, I was expecting a little better class. Had we not lost Jay Tufele to USC and Jordan Lolohea to Washington, we would have improved our ranking this year. Tufele was a long-shot but BYU thought it had Lolohea committed. Still, BYU signed two four star players which is comparable to teams ranked around 35. What killed our ranking is the number of 2 star players (11).

According to Sitake, the focus for this recruitment was to build-up the defensive and offensive lines and add depth to certain positions (hence 2 star players). They didn’t go hard after receivers because they had some red-shirt players they felt confident would step up this year. Ed Lamb reiterated what Bronco used to say about the number of stars a player has. The stars don’t necessarily tell the whole story. This staff likes going after high school players because they feel they can develop players to be great players. They go after players that can play multiple positions. Having players that are good at different positons allows the staff to move players around and get the best players on the field. We saw that with Harvey Langi this last year. They will go after some players with few stars if they have good size and speed and are athletic. They will develop these recruits into what they need.

The short answer is that this class isn’t a huge leap forward from the Bronco era but we will know in about 3 years how good this class is by how well they develop.

New Zealander Motekiai Langi’s should be done with his missionary soon. Any idea if he is going to be part of BYU Football? He never did played any football but he is a 400+ solid frame.
We can’t worry about how we did in ranking with signing day when we are still Independent and departing missionaries (some).

While I think that it is important to get 4 and 5 star athletes and to have as high of recruiting ranking as you can, I think that it is more important what actually hits the field. Early in the Crowton era, I think we hit about 35, if I remember correctly, We had several out of state recruits from Texas etc. that were like 4 star recruits. There was like some off campus crazy party that these guys were at. Several of them got kicked out of school and many of the others never made it to the field. 35 turned into 85. If we can take advantage of our talent, and have the best athletes be able to hit the field, that will matter more in the end. We also have some great transfers and mission returnees. I’m excited to see what happens from here forward.

Mo Langi finished his mission in Arizona on January 28th. Sitake said he hasn’t lost any weight since leaving on his mission. But, BYU has a good conditioning program. They think they will try him on the defensive line and see how he progresses. At 6’7" and around 410lbs, you would think he could plug some holes. My guess is that they would like to get him down to 340-360 and see how he moves. The other part of the equation is whether he has the mentality to be a lineman. If he turns out to be a 410lb cupcake, he may not help us out much.

Regarding the number of stars, you typically find the teams that say the number of stars a recruit has doesn’t matter are the teams that can’t get the 4-5 star athletes. There are always exceptions. Notre Dame almost always gets a top 20 recruiting class but BYU was better than they were last year. It goes without saying that coaching and team chemistry and scheme are all important too but you if you get all of that part right and still consistently get recruiting classes in the 60s and 70s, your chances of beating the teams consistently getting recruiting classes ranked in the top 20 are less.

I remember on KSL that Bronco M. has said his 410 lbs was mostly solid like a rock. 340-360 lbs might be hard to get to. Steve Kaufusi was not happy when he heard that he was at around 450. We shall see.

Glenn: I like your post and agree 100% that teams with top 20 classes will, bottom line, normally have better teams than teams with top 60 classes. That said, let me make a point that I think is very relevant and unique to BYU, and my hope is I can make it intelligently without taking up too much time: Recruiting services have limited resources; they make their money by selling recruiting information to D1 programs. Oregon wound up on NCAA probation a couple years ago for paying a guy for fake “recruiting evaluation data” in exchange for the guy recruiting kids close to him to attend UofO. That is old news, but it’s a dirty business. Resources being limited, these companies have to balance between hyping kids (creating demand), being accurate (maintaining a good reputation), and how to allocate their resources. This balance creates a phenomenon that is very, very unique to BYU: when an LDS kid, particularly one who is mission bound, commits to BYU, especially if he commits early, the ranking services will drop him. Why? Because they KNOW that LDS kids are far more likely not to flip to another school. The service (Scout, Rivals, 247, ESPN, etc) will not spend time following and scouting the kid, creating data for sale to other schools, when those other schools won’t pay for it, knowing the kid is going to BYU. There is no other major D1 program who has this type of brand loyalty within its sponsoring religious organization. Example: I and my family are very close friends with BYU MLB Will Sedgwick (coming home NEXT MONDAY from an incredibly well served mission to Barcelona). Will was a THREE TIME FIRST TEAM CIF (California Interscholastic Federation). As a sophomore, he was the only sophomore to make the first team. Will had D1 size and speed by his sophomore year. ESPN rated him 3 stars right out of the gate, and he was aggressively recruited right away by Oregon, Stanford, USC and Washington. Some of those schools sent him mail almost every day for months on end. Following his sophomore season Will went to BYU football camp. A coach told him Bronco wanted to talk to him and sent him up to Bronco’s office. Bronco offered him and Will accepted on the spot. Will grew up dreaming of playing for BYU, and once he had the official offer, that was that. Guess what? A year (and another first team All CIF) later, ESPN DIDN’T EVEN LIST HIM AS being tracked. Had Will held out on his decision, I’m very confident those 3 stars would have been 4 (to “sell” him to as many schools as possible)–he went from 210 to 225 while actually getting FASTER, with a weightlifter’s upper body. He had something like 200 tackles per season, in a very good league with lots of D1 talent (Orange County), on an average team with everyone scheming how to stop him. I flew down for a few games, and in one they must have thrown 15 one step drop swing passes just to get the ballcarrier away from Will as fast as they could, because he could not be blocked. So I say our recruiting class ranking is flawed for two reasons: 1) rankings don’t consider RMs, and 2) they drop LDS BYU early commits. A kid like Will adds a 4 star MLB to our class and probably moves us from 65 to 45, and there are 9 other RMs to factor in as well–some of whom were similarly highly regarded out of HS. I am NOT saying my theory equates our talent to Michigan or USC etc., only that we should take the “ranking” as being somewhat diluted.

Sorry guys, I exceeded my time allotment. Look for a MLB coming to you soon whose size and athleticism reminds me way too much of U’oni Unga. I’m absolutely, positively, completely biased but Will is a really, really good player.

Thanks for the excellent post! That’s the kind of perspective that passes most of us by without a second thought. There are also the stories of a “diamond in the rough” that is just a walk-on and develops into a 3-5 star player (ie. Dennis Pitta, Chad Lewis, etc). Yes, the number of stars don’t tell the whole story and the rating system is far from perfect. One of the under-rated skills of a coaching staff is the ability to evaluate talent and know how a player would fit into a program. They may not get the highest ranked recruiting class but they may evaluate talent better than the recruiting agencies. I really like hearing our coaches describe what they see in a player and why they like them…even if its a 2 star player. Jim Harbaugh likes to ask HS coaches about players that have great leadership skills. He’ll ask guys to walk-on just to tap into their leadership skills to help build the locker-room. It will be 3-4 years before we really know how good a class we got in 2017 and how good our coaches are at evaluating and developing talent.

Jay Drew brought up a good point. BYU had a few other transfers that weren’t counted in the class ranking. Had they been counted, BYU would be ranked around 40 nationally.

Your explanation required the detail you gave it. I know you have special interest in the kid but thanks for the legitimate comments. It is helpful to know these kinds of things.

Tom, I defer my allotted time to the gentlemen from Washington. Good to see you when you were in town. Next time we take the wives out, my treat.

Excellent points to be made. At BYU we have other issues to consider and I like that!

I guess I’ll have to open up more while we watch the games and explain more to you from a coaches point of view :wink:

Me likey Au You very much. A Nacua type guy.

My best bud in the world has a son, Hunter Greer, from Timponogos HS. 6-5, 220, played both ways since a fr. and the darn coach had him on the line because the program is so weak but Hunter has lead the team in tackles in D and would dominate from a DE or Linebacker position. Very fast, strong and long. Coach Sitake knows about him but BYU has not offered. Utah has had him up to their summer camp 2 straight years. He just finished up this Jr year.

One of my assistant coaches is a former D1 guy and his son Kolby Barker, who was our all state DE and is a very cut and athletic 6’5"/235, just signed to play DE at Air Force (due to the appointment process, AFA doesn’t release the names of signees until they actually enroll, but I was at the signing event). Kolby had several other D1 offers, and also had legit interest from Oregon and Washington State. He is not LDS, but is a 4.0 student and a dynamite kid who would have no problem with the HC. I put BYU onto him early in his senior year, but when they got back to me they said they liked his film, and love his body and athleticism, but they were not going to even recruit him because they already had more offers out to DEs than they needed. I was disappointed, but when I saw our recruiting class full of total stud DEs, that made total sense. I imagine I am one of hundreds of well meaning boosters who send them tips on players, and BYU just can’t follow every lead. I’m sure we miss on good players every year. That said, I think Sitake will cast a much wider and shallower net than Bronco, and work hard to follow up on every nibble by a kid on his list.

I know BYU wanted to shore-up the D-line. But, if you know of a good receiver still looking for a home, I think BYU could use one. Unfortunately, BYU missed out on Ty Jones, a 4 star recruit out of Provo High. Part of the reason Mangum did so well as a freshman was because of excellent senior receivers like Mich Matthews, Blackmon, and Houk. Maybe some of the redshirt guys will fill the need. I hear they are considering a move for Moroni from WR to TE.

I think Moroni is tough and has good hands. He makes spectacular catches, but also drops some easy ones. I think he is too slow to get consistent separation vs good corners, but too small to block DE and good OLB as a traditional TE. Slot receivers in the west coast offense need to be really quick to run all the inside short routes–Amendola and James White, who is technically a RB but often lined up as a slot receiver, put on a clinic for inside receivers on Sunday–and I’m not sure Moroni is that guy. But as a flex TE on passing downs I could see him being a really good player.

I had a chance to go back and look at the highlight reels of a number of our 2017 recruits…The kid, Hanna, out of Az that Max Hall coached…is a man child, played TE and DE as well as PUNTED. He is a Manamal, could play for anyone.

Isaac Rex, TE from Caly, Played LB and TE, state Champ, copy of Hanna, great hands.

Seth Willis, 315, good footwork, would make a great blindside Tackle to protect the QB. all are serving missions out of HS>

Love the new recruits, love our coaches. Just remember that BYU was 8 points from a undefeated season with Bronco’s recruits, imagine where we will be in 3 years.