(Note, if you didn't see, I did a Q&A on MSU football recruiting over at Black Show Diaries. Check it out.)
Michigan Football Recruiting had some really interesting data from this year's NFL Draft. In rounds 1-3, there were seven players drafted who were given five stars out of high school, compared to 16 players given two stars or fewer. Yes, there are fewer five stars than two stars, but the point is that there really are a ton of "diamonds in the rough." We know how five of MSU's six draft picks were given three stars or fewer.
Of course you want to bring in the best players. But if you can't, finding those lower-ranked players who can develop is extremely important. That's what MSU has done under Mark Dantonio. That's why MSU is not going away despite Michigan's dominance in Midwest recruiting (see the Q&A). It's not luck that Trenton Robinson went from a two-star prospect to an NFL Draft pick. It's coaching, and it's recruiting the right type of player. There are plenty of good football players to be had, and there always have been.
Not a ton of news regarding MSU targets over the last week. However, some players who have already committed to MSU are racking up some honors prior to their senior seasons.
QB commit Damion Terry participated in the Elite 11 tryout in Columbus over the weekend and was impressive, by all accounts. He probably won't get invited to the Elite 11 camp, but he showed a lot of upside and showed why bigger schools came calling not long after his commitment to MSU.
@SpartansOrDie He did very well. Very consistent and accurate. Maybe not a huge arm, but he's going to fill out a lot more and get stronger.— Allen Trieu (@AllenTrieu) May 5, 2012
Here is a Scout rundown of each player at the tryout. Scout also has a video interview with Terry. Rivals has one as well. In the videos, Terry says other schools have expressed interest in him, but his school emphasizes loyalty and his commitment to MSU will not change. He also continues to recruit his high school teammate, safety/athlete Delton Williams, to come to MSU (more on that below).
Shane Jones and Jon Reschke nominated for U.S. Army All-American Bowl (MLive) - The headline kind of explains the whole thing (Hooray for SEO!). The linebacking pair were nominated because they were rated among the top 400 rising high school seniors.
NFTC Columbus: Defensive recap (Scout) - At the Nike Football Training Camp last weekend, Reschke was one of the top performers at linebacker.
Michigan State commit Jon Reschke did very well. He's added muscle and is actually moving even better with the added weight. He did a nice job in the pass rush drill too, and as a former defensive end, that is his forte.
OL commit Caleb Benenoch has received a lot of interest some some big SEC and Big 12 schools, leading some to question how strong his commitment is to MSU. Spartan Tailgate reports that Texas Tech promised Benenoch he would start as a freshman. One thing MSU has that many of those other schools don't is winter.
This dang heat is reminding me why I picked #MSU— Caleb Benenoch (@CalebBenenoch79) May 7, 2012
Benenoch said he was visited by MSU OL coach Mark Staten and WR coach Terrance Samuel on Monday.
Ready to put on a show for coach Statem and coach Samuel today at practice #leggo— Caleb Benenoch (@CalebBenenoch79) May 7, 2012
It's gonna be a little Awk with coach Sam and coach Staten there with all those other coaches lol— Caleb Benenoch (@CalebBenenoch79) May 7, 2012
I wasn't sure what to make of this. Possible he meant the other coaches recruiting him? That would, indeed, be awkward.
Williams: Will Spartans' lead hold? (24/7) - As mentioned above, Damion Terry continues to recruit his friend Delton Williams. But now there is a new team involved. Ohio State expressed interest in Williams, who called the Buckeyes his "dream school" growing up. Williams admitted that MSU is at the top of his list, but an OSU offer "could change things." He still is set to visit Nebraska and possibly Penn State. MSU thought it could get a talented player before his stock rose, but now things will be very difficult.
'I love their defense' (24/7) - Needing to add some defensive tackles to the 2013 class, MSU is sitting well with four-star Massachusets DT Maurice Hurst Jr. Pat Narduzzi visited Hurst last month and the tackle said MSU is one of the schools recruiting him the hardest. He wouldn't visit MSU until the summer at the earliest, but this is a key player to watch.
Three-star Ohio LB Christopher Worley also performed at the Nike camp. Worley was recently offered by MSU. From Scout:
"My two newest offers are from Pittsburgh and Michigan State," he explained. "I like Michigan State and think a lot of that program, from the academics to the football part. Their coaches are all good guys, and that's a school I'm interested in. I've never been there yet, but plan on visiting there."
Robbins talks Spartan visit (Rivals) - Looking back to the Spring Game, three-star Maryland defensive end Kevin Robbins continues to have high interest in MSU. Robbins' father played at MSU, so he has been very familiar with the Green and White. Robbins will likely visit again in the summer, as he doesn't appear to be close to a decision any time soon.
MSU offers Bellamy - MSU continues to recruit Georgia hard, becoming the 17th offer for three-star defensive end Davin Bellamy. Other notable teams to offer include Georgia Tech, Virginia and Arkansas.
Chamblee (Ga) DE Davin Bellamy got offered by MichiganSt— Michael Carvell (@RecruitingAJC) May 8, 2012
2014 offensive lineman George Panos knows where he's going, and he won't let anyone change his mind.
#MichiganState & #Northwestern dropped in on #Wisconsin commit George Panos & #Alabama invited him to camp but he says he's all #Badger— Allen Trieu (@AllenTrieu) May 1, 2012
Hayes picks up second offer (Scout) - 2014 Traverse City offensive lineman Connor Hayes recently picked up an offer from Western Michigan, joining Central Michigan as his current offers. In June, Hayes says he will camp at MSU and Michigan, among others.
Arizona first to offer Michigan lineman (Rivals) - 2013 Detroit Catholic Central offensive guard Derek Edwards picked up his first BCS offer, coming from former U-M coach Rich Rodriguez. Edwards has been working out with former U-M strength coach Mike Barwis, which is why Arizona is so involved. He also has MAC offers. Outside of the four offers, Edwards says MSU is one of the most-interested teams. He plans to attend an MSU camp in the summer, hoping to earn an offer.