College football recruiting, like the rest of life, works on a calendar. Right now, we are the middle of what the NCAA calls a "quiet period."
During this time (Feb. 8- April 14), coaches may call players or send them mail, but may not visit with them anywhere but on campus.
So, coaches are working hard to get players to MSU for unofficial visits and basketball games provide the perfect opportunity.
For last night's Wisconsin game, the staff hosted several in-state prospects.
Going to the MSU game tonight!!!!!!!!— Lawrence Marshall Jr (@ESPN_Lo) March 7, 2013
On my way to MSU for the game #excited— Tyler Wiegers (@TylerWiegers) March 7, 2013
Go State!!!! #SpartanDawgs instagr.am/p/WlC9Jctl83/— Nick Padla (@npadla) March 8, 2013
2014 Michigan WR Maurice Ways is visiting #MichiganState tonight.Ways has plans to visit #OhioState March 30th— Charles Doss (@CDoss_LGHL) March 7, 2013
Of those players in attendance last night, only Marshall has an offer, while the others are working for MSU offers and likely will have to come to camps this summer to have a shot at earning one.
Watkins narrows to five (247) - One of MSU's top targets in 2014, Galion (Ohio) athlete Dareian Watkins listed his final five, and MSU made the list. He had the most positive things to say about MSU. Watkins will take visits to his final five schools and wants to make a decision by May 1.
Spencer shines at Raw Talent (Scout) - Cleveland Shaker Heights wide receiver Odell Spencer doesn't have many offers (two MAC schools), but after his performance at a recent combine, he is gaining more interest. He says MSU coaches have said they are close to offering.
Jones lays out a timetable (Rivals) - One of the nation's top offensive tackles, Chicago De La Salle's Jamarco Jones, will visit MSU for the spring game on April 20. He also says he wants to get to East Lansing for a practice. MSU faces an uphill battle to try to land Jones, but such visits are obviously a positive.
LaRubbio holds interest in State (Scout) - Middletown Lakota East offensive lineman Jarrett LaRubbio holds an impressive offer list, and MSU could be added to that list soon. He wants to take a visit to East Lansing and has been in contact with the coaching staff and says he has always been interested in the MSU program.
Detroit DB is getting major attention (Rivals) - Detroit King routinely puts out good talent, and 2014 is no exception. Defensive back Jalen Embry leads the list of the players the Spartans are interested and he could earn an offer down the road. He currently has a handful of MAC offers.
All-state lineman hearing from MSU (Rivals) - Alma offensive tackle Curtis Doyle is a big prospect and holds offers from WMU and CMU. He is someone MSU ultimately could offer, and based on what Doyle says, MSU could be hard to beat.
Spartans talking to 2013 RB/FB (247) - MSU added a few late recruits in 2012 and is looking to add Genoa running back Kyle Nutter this year as a preferred walk-on. He has the same offer from U-M, and scholarship offers from D-2 schools.
Q & A
Do you think we will recruit in more quantity nationally this year? The offer sheet is broad, do you think this will happen? - @Colling_Stauder
The offer list clearly indicates the staff wants to make its presence felt more nationally -- specifically in the southeast.
In the past few years, the staff has pulled between four and seven players from outside the Midwest annually (2013-4, 2012-5, 2011-7, 2010-4). The majority of those have come from Florida and Georgia, and I expect MSU to pull at least one from Florida this year. T.J. Harrell would be a good guess at this point.
New Jersey also is a place the staff is hitting hard, with Pat Narduzzi heading up the efforts. MSU sits well with defensive back Shamir Bearfield and athlete Kiy Hester.
Beyond those few, MSU would be a longshot for many prospects they have offered outside the Midwest to date, as most have impressive offer lists.
Who do you think will be states 2014 QB verbal? - @Crazynick15
Yikes. That is a great question. Chris Durkin, Caleb Henderson, DeShone Kizer and Michael O'Connor all are viable options. It really might come down to who visits first and commits. Durkin is visiting in late March, while Kizer-- who just was offered by LSU and Alabama -- is looking to make a visit soon, too.
O'Connor, reports say, has been close to calling Mark Dantonio and committing, but those close to him want him to wait longer. Not much has been heard from Henderson lately, but I get the feeling he is waiting for more offers.
If I had to guess today, I would say it will be Durkin or Kizer, with Durkin being more likely. That said, O'Connor is my favorite prospect of the bunch.
Can O Connor, Allen and Watkins just commit already?!?!?!? - @TracktheBet
New Offers (3/1/13-3/7/13)
Running back Jonathan Hilliman, Jersey City, NJ (St. Peters Prep)
Wide receiver Jalen Brown, Phoenix, Ariz. (Mountain Pointe)