February 9, 2009
Rating the Big Ten Recruits: QB and RB
SpartanMag.com take a look at how the entire Big Ten conference did address the needs at specific position. See how the Spartans stack up against the rest of the conference. Today we look at the quarterback and running back spots. Where do Andrew Maxwell, Edwin Baker and Larry Caper rank? See insideQUARTERBACK:
Top Ranked: Andrew Maxwell of Michigan State
Maxwell is the Big Ten's highest rated quarterback in the Rivals 250 at #142. Maxwell was flying under the radar of many national recruitg sites duie to making such an early commitment to Michigan State. He answered his skeptics about his ability, buyt not only being name dot the Elite 11 Camp, but having a strong perocvnacne agausnt the nations best.
Instant Impact: Tate Forcier of Michigan
Forcier will be given every opportunity to succeed or fail in Rich Rodriguezs's offense. Forcier is already on campus and that give shim a step up on some of the other athletes that could get a look at quarterback for the Wolverines. Michigan ranked dead last in total offense last fall in the Big Ten and needs a quarterback that has the ability to make something out of nothing.
Future Star: Kevin Newsome of Penn State
Newsome may not be the best passer, but neither was Michael Robinson when he was at Penn State. The Nittany Lions have bought into having an athletic quarterback running the show. Pro-style passer Pat Devlin transferred away which should open the path for Newsome to be a 3-year contributor at QB, if he doesn't end up at linebacker.
Sleeper to watch: Evan Watkins of Northwestern
At 3-stars it might be a little difficult top classify Watkins as a sleeper, but the Wildcat quarterback probably did not get the recognition he deserve for a variety of reasons. Making an early commitment and committing to Northwestern usually don't help a player's stock. Watkins is big, mobile and has a chance to be a good one for Coach Fitzgerald.
Top Ranked: Jaamal Berry of Ohio State
Berry is a dynamic open-field runner and the Buckeyes getting him out of Florida was a huge recruiting coup for Coach Tressel. If we were not sold on Boom Herron's ability, we would have put Berry down as the player that could make an instant impact. Berry will be a great change of pace option for Ohio State and could be theior big-play threat from the running back spot.
Instant Impact: Larry Caper of Michigan State
The loss of Javon Ringer means Michigan State will have to replace 400-carries. The job will be wide open for the fall and Caper has as good a shot as anyone of winning the job. Fellow 4-star running back Edwin Baker is coming off a knee injury and that could slow his development a bit. Caper was a workhorse in high school carrying the ball 276 times a for over 1700 yards, so he knows the routine.
Future Star: Fitzgerald Toussaint of Michigan
Coach Rich Rodriguez was hoping that Sam McGuffie would be the perfect scat-back for his offense, but he has hurdled back to Texas. Toussaint might be the perfect fit for the read-option spread that Michigan wants to employ. Toussaint put up incredible number this fall (over 2200-yards and 28 touchdowns) while being named Ohio Co-Offensive Player of the Year
Sleeper to watch: Brad Rogers of Iowa
Iowa loves to pound the ball and Rogers is a big back that can run between the tackles. The loss of Shonn Greene mean that Coach Ferentz and the Hawkeyes will be looking for someone to step up and assume the feature back role. Rogers may not be ready to do that, but he could be the short yardage-goal like option as a true freshmen.
Next Up : WR's and TE's
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