Midwest Recruiting Notebook

What Does Offer List Mean?

After Minnesota‘s win over Nebraska on Saturday, one which put the Gophers at 8-3 with the possibility of a Big Ten title still out there pending a big matchup with Wisconsin this weekend, director of recruiting operations Billy Glasscock tweeted that 30 of the 44 players on the Gopher two-deep had only one power-five offer: Minnesota.

Fans often say they like to look at offer lists as an indication of a player’s talent and how they may fare in college. The Gopher formula for success creates direct opposition to the notion that an offer list is any type of predictor for future success.

In the Midwest, you have some classic power type schools like Ohio State, Notre Dame, Michigan, which serve, for some fans, parents and recruits as a benchmark type offer. However, two of the Midwest’s biggest success stories this season, Melvin Gordon and Tevin Coleman, did not have offers from any of the three schools. 

An SEC offer to a Midwest kid is another milestone type offer, but neither Gordon nor Coleman had any SEC offers either. 

Once I thought about it, Glasscock’s statistic made sense and became less surprising once I broke it down. Offers snowball. Kids get one offer, other schools jump on, then others jump on, a lot of them time without really seeing the kid in person, and the kid’s profile blows up.

On the other hand, these guys with the one or two offers are kids that might be a little more hidden from view or under the radar. In those cases, they get more thoroughly evaluated and vetted before being offered as coaches are trying to figure out if there are any red flags which have kept them from being offered. That’s why players with just one or two "big" offers have a pretty good success rate. They were offered more on merit than some of the guys who have 50 offers because everyone piled on.

That’s not to say there aren’t guys out there who deserve their extensive offer lists. There certainly are many every year. But as recruiting moves earlier, and access to highlight tapes becomes easier through HUDL and YouTube, it also becomes easier to offer kids quickly. And as Minnesota has shown, that is not always the best method.

There is more than one way to skin a cat and Minnesota’s formula would not work for everyone and there are top programs out there whose methods would not work for the Gophers. But what Jerry Kill and company have shown that fans should fret not the next time their favorite school receives a commitment from a lower ranked kid with no other offers.

Weber Decommits from Michigan

In a move that had been building for a few weeks now, Detroit Cass Tech’s Mike Weber made his decommitment from Michigan official. Weber will now, according to Scout’s Anna Hickey, officially visit Ohio State, USC, Georgia, Michigan State and Notre Dame, who recently offered.

Recent Commitments

– Stanford picked up a commitment from Lake Forest (Ill.) Academy defensive tackleWes Annan last week. Annan is a disruptive player with a good motor. He’s not quite as tall as his listed 6-foot-5, but that actually helps him in his position. Still learning technique, but a hard worker and a player who plays hard consistently, he should end up contributing for the Cardinal.

News and Notes 

– Pittsburgh lost a commitment this week in DaVon Hamilton as the Pickerington (Ohio) Central defensive tackle will now visit Ohio State and is also considering Kentucky.

– Ohio State extended an offer to Tuf Borland, a four-star junior linebacker from Bolingbrook (Ill.). Borland is a little undersized (6-1, 220) but still has room to grow and he is a fantastic football player with good speed, instincts and toughness (no pun intended). The Buckeyes now challenge Wisconsin, where his father played, and other offers are likely this offseason.

– Northwestern offered Brother Rice (Mich.) receiver Grant Perry, an outstanding player with great hands, route-running skills and all around football ability. This is his first Big Ten offer, as some questioned his size and speed, but he answered those questions and then-some this season. Perry, who showed increased run after the catch ability this Fall, continues to have contact with Indiana, Minnesota, Michigan and Temple, and the Wildcats may not be his last power five offer. He visits Evanston this weekend.

– Minneapolis North (Minn.) junior Tyler Johnson had a big week, adding his first offer from Iowa and then one from Minnesota. An athletic 6-foot-2, 190-pound high school quarterback, Johnson can project to quarterback, safety or wide receiver at the next level.

Underclassman of the Week

Minneapolis (Minn.) Washburn sophomore D’Angelo Moore (6-2, 170) may be the next D1 prospect from the school. He played safety and wide receiver last season and has the length and athleticism to develop into a kid colleges will come after in the next few years.

Sleeper of the Week

I liked Mount Horeb (Wisc.) quarterback Max Meylor on his sophomore film and his junior film continues to show an accurate passer with solid athleticism. He may not have a howitzer for an arm, but he throws on time and has enough on his passes and is accurate enough to get them into windows. As he fills out and gets stronger, the velocity will continue to improve. Wisconsin, Minnesota, Northwestern and others are interested and I believe he will end up with some D1 offers.