Mark A. Cunningham
Florida defensive back becomes 16th commitment in the class of 2013.
Defensive back Justin Williams, Treasure Coast (Port St. Lucie, Fla.) - (6-foot-1, 180 pounds)
Ratings: Rivals (3 stars), Scout (3 stars), 247sports (2 stars), ESPN (unranked)
Other notable offers: South Carolina, Cincinnati, Purdue, West Virginia
This weekend, Michigan State hosted all of its 2013 commits, and a couple of uncommitted prospects, too.
One of them, Justin Williams, committed to MSU during his official visit to East Lansing.
Apparently, the Izzone and crowd at the basketball game against Ohio State made an impact on the Floridian.
Ha I was weak at my boy Justin. After he saw how turnt Msu got against OState he committed right there!— Trey Kilgore (@Tk_Kilgore7) January 20, 2013
Williams received an MSU offer last April and was recruited by Pat Narduzzi and Harlon Barnett. He joins Jalyn Powell, Darian Hicks and Delton Williams as defensive back recruits -- although Williams could end up at RB or LB.
While he is listed as a safety on all recruiting sites, Williams fills a variety of spots on high school team, from cornerback to kick returner to running back -- and he makes plays at all of them.
According to Scout.com, the staff sees him being able to fill a variety of spots for the Spartans, too.
"The coaches feel I can play both safety and corner," explained Williams. "Wherever they stick me on the field will be fine with me. I could play some special teams next season and may even get some reps on offense."
He has been clocked at 10.5 in the 100-meter dash, and the speed is clear no matter where he is playing on the field.
As a cornerback, he shows pretty good ball awareness and cover skills, but is raw. His speed is on a different level, which allows him to recover quickly and make good plays on the ball, but the technique needs improvement. He does make the tackle and, many times, a big hit when the ball is thrown to his side of the field.
He also shows pretty good pursuit in run defense -- again, no surprise given his speed.
He certainly has the size to matchup against bigger wide receivers on the edge -- something MSU craves in its cornerbacks.
As a kick returner, Williams displays his phenomenal speed and great burst. He gets to his top speed quickly and gets separation as he gets downfield. He also has good shake and eludes defenders well.
The same speed and shiftiness is clear as a running back, where he easily gets to the edge and is all but gone when he does.
All in all, Williams is a prototypical player that MSU recruits to play in the secondary., just a little bit raw. He is a phenomenal athlete, but unrefined as a football player, at this point.
With the depth in the secondary, Williams is a great fit at MSU. He has time to grow and mature on the field as he learns more of the necessary technique.
He has all the makings of a redshirt candidate as a bit of a project player, but if the coaches decide he can make an impact as a kick returner and on specials teams immediately, Williams will be on the field.
He is one of three Florida natives in the class, joining defensive tackles Devyn Salmon and Noah Jones.