Hello: Juwann Bushell-Beatty

Submitted by Ace on April 29th, 2013 at 11:54 AM

According to Sam Webb, Michigan just picked up their eighth commitment of the 2014 class—and third in the last week—in Paramus (NJ) Catholic OL Juwann Bushell-Beatty. Bushell-Beatty joins Mason Cole among offensive line commits in the class; like Cole, he also has an elite high school teammate being recruited heavily by the Wolverines—in his case, five-star corner Jabrill Peppers, for whom the recruiting tides appear to be shifting in Michigan's favor.

Update of the informative variety:

GURU RATINGS

Scout Rivals ESPN 24/7 Sports
3*, #45 OT 3*, #29 OT 4*, 83, #10 OT,
#120 Ovr
4*, 90, #17 OT,
#215 Ovr

There's a clear split in Bushell-Beatty's rankings, though Scout is more of an outlier here than they initially appear—the #28 OT on Rivals is a four-star, so JBB is just one spot away there. ESPN and 247, meanwhile, have him easily within their top n lists. The reason for the divide is almost certainly that Bushell-Beatty has played all of one season at the varsity level; until he amasses more game film and hits the camp circuit, opinions could be all over the place.

There's a similar disparity when it comes to his measurables: Rivals and Scout both list JBB at 6'5", 295 pounds, while ESPN and 247 both have him at 6'7", with the former listing him all the way up at 330 lbs. and the latter at 310.

SCOUTING

You'll be shocked to read that a player who's got one season of varsity football under his belt is described as "raw"—here by NJVarsity.com, which listed JBB as #14 in-state junior in March ($):

14.) OL Juwan Bushell-Beatty - Paramus Catholic
Bushell-Beatty has a Division 1 frame and moves decently for someone his size. He is still a bit on the raw side, but last year was only his first playing at the high school varsity level. What he showed last year was just a glimpse as he has plenty of room to grow as an offensive tackle. He is just learning the finer points of the game but has enough athletic ability and natural tools to be considered a solid BCS-level prospect.

ESPN's evaluation suggests that Bushell-Beatty could end up at either guard or tackle in college, depending on his development in pass protection ($) [emphasis mine]:

Bushell-Beatty possesses good height and bulk as an O-Line prospect and with some time in a college weight program looks to have a frame that can still support a little more good size. In the run game he can smother defenders and gain more positional leverage, but when he gets good placement with his hands and keeps his pad level down he can push defenders off the line. He does need to work to improve placement and pad level as he can pop up, get tall, not roll his hips into blocks, stop his feet on contact and not consistently create the push he is capable of. When blocking down can wash defenders down the line of scrimmage. Can work to second level with good control and get a hat on targets in his track. In pass pro can use his length and strength well. Uses his reach well and displays very good upper-body strength and can deliver a violent punch that can knock edge rushes off course. Flashes the ability to punch and lock on, but would like to see that more from him. His kick step is effective enough, though he can turn shoulders a little quickly and be a bit of a waist bender but makes it tough for rushers to get into his frame. Flashes the ability to slide with rushers once locked on but demonstrates adequate lateral mobility. Displays good awareness and some finishing nastiness.

It's not a surprise to see pad level as an issue for a raw tackle prospect who may still be growing; that's something that should improve with experience, and same goes for most of the technical issues that ESPN points out in JBB's game. It sounds like his run blocking is currently ahead of his pass blocking, which is typical for a player at this stage and also bodes well should he kick down to guard.

Given this quote from Bushell-Beatty's head coach, it sounds like he's taken quite strongly to football after some initial trepidation, per 247's Steve Wiltfong ($):

“We were like listen buddy you’re playing football,” [Paramus Catholic head coach Chris] Partridge said. “I give him all the credit in the world. We weren’t easy on him. He pushed through it and it wasn’t easy for him. He pushed through it and he’s mean and he’s getting it and it’s good to see that as a coach. We took a chance with starting him and giving him that spot and it worked out.”

...

“He was very raw,” Partridge began. “He’s now getting better and better. He’s a kid that can develop and be a big-time national kid. If he makes the strides he made from last year to this year he’ll blow up.”

In case you're non sensing the theme at this point, JBB is very much a developmental prospect. With his frame and raw potential, he could grow into a special player, but he's going to need a few years to refine technique—with Michigan's recent offensive line recruiting, there are few places better suited to letting a prospect marinate for a while before they're ready to see the field.

OFFERS

Bushell-Beatty's list reveals that Michigan isn't the only school that sees big-time potential in him—Florida, Florida State, Miami (YTM), Michigan State, Rutgers, Tennessee, and West Virginia also extended offers before his commitment, and he also fielded interest from Ohio State, Penn State, and Pitt.

HIGH SCHOOL

Led by Jabrill Peppers, Paramus Catholic won last year's state title in the New Jersey Non-Public Group 4 division, which includes football powerhouses like Don Bosco Prep. Despite their recent success, Paramus Catholic hasn't produced a ton in the way of BCS recruits—before this 2014 group, only 2011 four-star DT Marquise Wright (Rutgers) and 2010 three-star OL Dan Foose (Florida State) committed to BCS schools since 2002, per the Rivals recruiting database.

STATS

Offensive lineman, no stats.

FAKE 40 TIME

No available 40 time, not that offensive linemen tend to run 40 yards in a straight line during game situations unless they happen to be donkey-riding Manti Te'o.

VIDEO

Junior highlights:

PREDICTION BASED ON FLIMSY EVIDENCE

It's hard to say anything definitive about a prospect who's played one year of varsity football. That said, I like what I see from Bushell-Beatty, who's got an ideal lineman frame and appears to be a natural when it comes to certain aspects of line play, most especially in how he uses his hands. He'll have to develop significantly in pass protection to become a blindside tackle option; the potential is there, but it seems more likely he'll slot in at right tackle (or left, if lefty Shane Morris is the QB) or bump down to guard.

Regardless of where he ends up, JBB will assuredly take a redshirt year and likely a couple years after that before he competes for a spot on the two-deep; Michigan has too much depth and talent on the line to expect a relative football newcomer to make a serious push for early playing time.

UPSHOT FOR THE REST OF THE CLASS

The Wolverines now have a couple of commits who could play multiple positions on the line: Mason Cole is likely a guard but could also play tackle, while JBB is ideally the opposite if he develops. Michigan should take one, perhaps two, more lineman and be set for this class, especially considering they took a sixth OL last year.

The other upshot, of course, is that Michigan has another edge in the recruitment of Peppers. At worst, the Wolverines appear to be neck-and-neck with Stanford, and only one of those schools has Peppers' high school teammate in the fold. I still expect Peppers to visit Palo Alto before making a decision, but it's looking increasingly likely that he ends up in Ann Arbor. Yes, that would be very nice indeed.

Comments

CRex

April 29th, 2013 at 12:38 PM ^

His size and frame are excellent, although with his gut he looks a bit like a LTT project where you need to slim him down and build him back up.  The slightly worrying part is that I've yet to find a highlight film of him where he generates a lot of pancakes.  He'll use his hands to stonewall rushers or his body to kind of bowl people over, but I don't really see a nasty streak so much as just occupying space with his planetoid sized body.  Of course with the talent on the roster, he's likely a lock to redshirt and take a year to get mean.   The offer list suggests a lot of coaches feel the same way.

PeterKlima

April 29th, 2013 at 12:41 PM ^

So, I happen to notice on a MSU recruiting board that their D Co. Narduzzi flew into NJ this morning. I assume he would be planning to visit JBB at some point. Either he already visited today and JBB felt done with the process after that....or Narduzzi was planning to visit and JBB wanted to save him the time and effort.

Either way, I think a "thank you" is in order for MSU's staff!!!!!!

Huma

April 29th, 2013 at 2:08 PM ^

Do we know if Jabrill and JBB are good friends?   If so, this is great news on the Peppers front, if not, then it probably doesn't signal much about Peppers' recruitment.

Doctor Wolverine

April 29th, 2013 at 2:53 PM ^

Yeah, I feel like I remember reading that they would like to end up at the same school, but that obviously wouldn't be the only factor (no link). This theoretically should help with Peppers, but for now congrats to JBB for what must be a very exciting day for him.

Wolverine 73

April 29th, 2013 at 3:07 PM ^

these next few years to watch all these highly touted OL and see who turns into a star, who is a passable starter, and who is not a contributor.  In a few years, we should be looking at a veteran OL every year, with guys not playing until they are juniors unless they are superstars in the making.  That almost guarantees an adequate offense year in and year out even if the skill guys are not stars.

NW_Wolverine

April 29th, 2013 at 4:44 PM ^

I love it when these guys get blown away by their visit, give it some thought, and commit shortly after. I feel like I can relate to them, because if I had had an extra 100 pounds of muscle, some skill, and a Michigan offer I would have totally done the same thing.