landing spot. will be interesting to see how he does.
Denard for Offensive Player and Devin Funchess for Freshman of the week.
According to reports, Wisconsin has fired their new O-line coach, and replacing him with an offensive quality control assistant. Wow. Two games.
Jake Butt announced that he IS enrolling early now.
That means the current early enrollment list looks roughly like this:
- Kyle Bosch
- Jake Butt
- Taco Charlton
- Ross Douglas
- Dymonte Thomas (probable)
- Logan Tuley-Tillman
It looks likes early enrollment is becoming more and more popular every year and it will definitely help these guys see the field earlier.
So, with a couple weeks of games under our belts, a few things have started to shake out across Big Ten land. Nothing substantial yet, but at this point, if a player is going to have an impact this season, there's a good chance they've at least showed up a bit so far. That said, I'm wondering which WHO DAT B1G players have caught your eye while flipping between games during halftime or reading the wraps on Sunday. Obviously, no Michigan players are really WHO DAT to us, but include them if they are surprising you.
By team, from those I pay least attention to:
Indiana - True soph Tre Roberson, #5 QB, who actually appeared in 9 games last season, becoming ostensibly the starter by the end of the year. However, it being Indiana, I really can't claim to have noticed. This year, despite the terrible level of competition for Indiana thus far, there's been no denying Roberson, who leads his team with 378 passing yards, 124 rushing yards and a 68% completion percentage.
In true Indiana fashion, Tre suffered a broken leg in Saturday's game vs. UMass, and is done for the season. Still... impressive enough start.
Illinois - True Frosh Josh Ferguson, #6 RB. Again, level of competition questions here, but ASU ain't exactly UMass despite the loss of Vontaze Burfict, and the 3-star Running Back with a smattering of MAC and service academy offers was one of the Illini's few lone bright spots there. Through two games, the Freshman has rushed 25 times for 139 yards (5.6 per pop) and added a few receptions to go along with it. I'm not saying he's Rashard Mendenhall, but he'll be one to watch.
Iowa - Any RB at Iowa with legs is impressive, I suppose, and True Soph Damon Bullock has done a few things to get noticed. Appearing in 6 games in 2011, mostly on special teams (a total of 20 carries on offense), the wrath of the AIRBHG has basically made Bullock the defacto starter. The 2-star RB with offers to Iowa and literally nobody else has looked decent, rolling up 203 rushing yards and 82 recieving, with 2 total TD's, in Iowa's first two games. His 2.1 YPC versus Iowa State was more than alleged savior Greg Garmon could accomplish, at any rate.
Purdue - True Soph Ryan Russell, two star Defensive End. Ruseell appeared in all 13 games in his freshman season, making a decent showing of 32 total tackles, 17 solo. That's not going to make headlines though. This year, he has come alive in his first two games, putting up 11 total, including 6 solo, against even tough competition like ND. Last year he earned a total of 4.5 TFL. This year, he already has 2.5. An edge rushing terror in the making?
Minnesota - I can't claim that anyone on Minnesota's team has jumped out at me that I didn't already know. Gray has looked a little better, but he's not an unknown. Does anyone else have a suggestion here?
Penn State - The mass exodus of playmakers from Penn State has opened a hole for longtime "other contributors" to step up. Senior RB Derek Day, who also played some defense as late as last year, has shown a few good things for Penn State so far. Day, who first earned offensive stats last year, appearing in all games but earning only 7 carries for 27 yards, has kind of become starter by default, and given the Nittany Lions at least a minor punch at RB, with 26 carries for 83 yards. Penn state is very much by committee at this point, but the unheralded, longtime benchwarmer at least gives happy Valley fans a pair of legs on the ground, and has looked steady to date.
Any other notes from the board?
- Denard looks like he is indeed much improved as a passer. His throws were mostly accurate lasers and his ball placement looked very good.
- The Devins create a bit of a problem for the opposing defense and are a wonderfully athletic duo to have. Hopefully they will be a mismatch in our favor the rest of the year.
- Toussaint does not look ready for prime-time. In fact, he looked slow and indecisive.
- Troy Calhoun seems to have a problem down under. I can't recall ever seeing anyone grab their junk so much on national television.
- Funchess - Looked the part of the athletic freak mismatch, hauling in 4 passes for 106 yards and his first Michigan TD (congrats). We may have a very special talent here.
- Gardner - Was much improved in his routes it appeared, reeled in another TD and generally looked like a receiver.
- Norfleet - Didn't bust one but you can feel it coming. Ran one back to the 36 but must have ran 72 yards to get there.
- Denard - Gets his 20 carries when he is about as big as anyone on the opposing defense; made the most of them. 200+ yards rushing and passing. Should have had no INTs too. Please stay healthy.
- Troy Calhoun's Crabs - Proved just distracting enough to let Michigan escape his clutches. Hard to clutch anything when one hand is so constantly occupied.
Very little action in the rankings this week—the lone new commit goes to Notre Dame, which is slowly closing the gap on Michigan at the top of the big board. Changes since the last rankings:
9-7-12: Notre Dame picks up Doug Randolph.
|Big Ten+ Recruiting Class Rankings|
|Rank||School||# Commits||Rivals Avg||Scout Avg||24/7 Avg||ESPN Avg||Avg Avg^|
^The average of the average rankings of the four recruiting services (the previous four columns). The figure is calculated based on the raw numbers and then rounded, so the numbers above may not average out exactly.
NOTE: Unranked recruits are counted as two-star players.
To eliminate any confusion about how the rankings are determined (to be honest, they used to be arbitrary), team order is determined by multiplying the number of commits by star average.
On to the full data after the jump.