After roughly a three-month long drought, Michigan State Spartans football recruiting seems to be picking up steam once again. Saturday evening, the Spartans picked up a verbal commitment from Composite four-star offensive lineman, Geno VanDeMark. This marks MSU’s second commitment in the last seven days, following last weekend’s pledge from Nashville defensive lineman Alex Okelo. VanDeMark announced his commitment via Twitter:
110% COMMITTED TO MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY!!! Extremely thankful for everyone who has helped me get here!! #GoGreen pic.twitter.com/XQEcxsC3cQ— Geno VanDeMark (@GenoVanDeMark) August 22, 2020
VanDeMark hails from Montvale, New Jersey where he attends St Joseph Regional High School. At 6-foot-4-inches and 305 pounds, VanDeMark projects to be an offensive guard at the next level, but he may also be able to slide over and cover the tackle position as well. His offers list is strong, as he picked the Spartans over schools such as Nebraska, Arizona State, Ole Miss, Minnesota, Tennessee, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Miami (FL.), and the home-state Rutgers Scarlet Knights, amongst others
The commitment of VanDeMark also gives MSU its highest-ranked player to date in the 2021 class. 247sports.com lists VanDeMark as a consensus four-star prospect, MSU’s first for the 2021 class, and Mel Tucker’s first Composite four-star recruit as head coach of the Spartans. 247Sports has VanDeMark as the 317th best prospect overall in the nation, the 18th best offensive guard, and the fourth best prospect in New Jersey. Rivals.com is even higher on VanDeMark, listing him as a 5.8-rated, four-star recruit who is ranked 160th overall.
The addition of VanDeMark as the 13th member of the Spartan’s 2021 class is certain to make an impact on MSU’s overall ranking. MSU’s ranking on 247Sports stood at No. 73 overall prior to the commitment, but has since moved up seven spots to No. 66 overall. On Rivals, MSU’s ranking was No. 70, but moved to No. 57 with today’s commitment. The Spartans are certainly on an upward trajectory with today’s news.
VanDeMark joins East Lansing native Ethan Boyd (5.6-rated, three-star) and fellow New Jersey native Kevin Wigenton (5.5-rated, three star) as the third offensive lineman to commit to the Spartans. Michigan State is expected to bring in four offensive linemen total in the 2021 class.
It is rumored that Wigenton may have played a big role in attracting VanDeMark to join him in East Lansing. Last weekend, Wigenton visited MSU’s campus, along with VanDemark and another of MSU’s top recruiting targets from New Jersey, four-star and Top 400 running back Audric Estime.
In addition, it is rumored that a fourth New Jersey target, three-star linebacker Mikai Gbayor, was originally planing to visit on the 15th as well, but had to postpone until later in the month. Could VanDeMark’s commitment mark the start of a new Spartan pipeline to The Garden State? Various recruiting experts have recently submitted crystal balls projecting Estime to soon join the 2021 MSU class. Stay tuned.
The Spartans had an additional advantage in VanDeMark’s recruitment. VanDeMark’s grandfather, Allan VanDeMark played at Michigan State in the 1960s. In addition, MSU’s new offensive line coach, Chris Kapilovic, has recruited other St. Joseph alumni over the years, so he has an established relationship with Geno’s high school coaching staff.
While the current status of the 2020 Big Ten and overall college football season remains very much in flux due to the continuing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, MSU football recruiting appears to be trending in a positive direction. Hopefully, the rest of the world will soon follow,
For a look at Geno VanDeMark in action, check out his Hudl film below: