Hello: Scott Sypniewski Comment Count

Ace June 6th, 2012 at 5:34 PM

Via the Rubio Long Snapping Flickr

In a commitment that caught pretty much everyone off guard, Ottawa (IL) long snapper Scott Sypniewki has committed to Michigan on a full scholarship, as first announced by long-snapping guru Chris Rubio and confirmed by multiple outlets. Sypniewski is the 21st commit in the class of 2013 and (surprise!) the first long snapper. A bit more info on his commitment comes via Scout's Allen Trieu ($):

"They said they need one. They just lost their starter, Tom Pomarico. They have one guy who is going to be a senior and they were going to bring in two walk-ons. They've seen my film and knew I was good enough to start there and that's why they offered me a scholarship."

No further explanation is necessary, I'm sure.


Scout Rivals ESPN 247 Sports

Sypniewski, unsurprisingly, is not rated by any of the recruiting services. Chris Rubio Long Snapping, however, specializes in this sort of thing, and they've got him as the #2 long snapper in the 2013 class (Taybor Pepper was 6th) and a five-star prospect. Sypniewski is listed at 6'1", 230.

The above link comprises almost all of the available scouting information on Sypniewski that a 15-minutes Google-stalk could turn up. It is, shall we say, laudatory:

Sypniewski is a man on a mission. Body is looking thick and muscular. He is moving well and snapping rockets. Attitude on this kid is amazing. Tell him to do something and consider it done. He has a good time but is full of rage when he is snapping. Love it. Ball is smooth, on target and crisp. He gets set and BOOM! the ball is in your hands. Very impressed with him and he is a no brainer scholarship kid!

Sypniewski is just flat out fantastic! Ball is like a missle yet very easy to catch. Movement is flawless and he is snapping with ease. Looks like he is not even trying but, before you blink, the ball is right on your hip. Accuracy, consistency and speed are all excellent. A tad lighter on his feet could bump him up and I am being picky. Sypniewski is terrific and is snapping with a TON of confidence. I am fully expecting him to stick his chest out and dominate in Vegas.  4/12

There's also this, er, juicy tidbit [emphasis mine]:

Excellent job by Sypniewski. Body is becoming athletic and thick. Huge legs and butt. Great for a Long Snapper. Ball, when he snaps the ball HARD, is absolutely fantastic. Blocks extremely well for his age when he gets back. Tremendous personality. Does a great job of improving every single time. Great worker and will be a great teammate to those around him.


The Wolverine's Andy Reid caught up with Rubio—who's been coaching Sypniewski since 2009—shortly after his commitment for additional insight ($):

Rubio said Sypniewski's strengths are his size and strength in the blocking game and, most importantly, the speed and fluidity of his snaps.

"He's fantastic," Rubio said. "His snap is just so smooth, but it's still a such a rapid movement. You almost think there's no way it could be coming this quick, because it's still so smooth. It's just boom, hits you."

"I would like to see him work on his footwork, continuing to get downfield after the snap. But, in all honesty, he really doesn't need much right now to make the step up to the next level."

Sounds like he could be an early contributor, as current snapper/folk hero Jareth Glanda will be a redshirt senior when Sypniewski gets on campus. I won't really attempt to add anything else to the scouting of a long snapper, especially since—as you'll see below—there's an astounding amount of film on the kid. He's got a 15-yard snap time of .69 seconds, [Ed-S: This is 44 miles per hour. Four FAKES out of FIVE!] which I imagine is very good but have zero context for saying so.

UPDATE: There are a couple of other long-snapper rankings out there, and it appears there are large disparities between the respective lists—if I had to guess, these rankings vary wildly depending on whose camps these prospects attend. Sypniewski comes in at #14 on Kohl's Professional Camps snapper rankings, and indeed, you must attend one of their camps to be included. Here's their writeup:

Scott has a solid frame with very good mechanics. His overall SS and LS accuracy is good and he is consistent with his snap speed. Scott finished with an average snap time of .74 seconds at the Midwest Showcase Camp in December of 2011 with his best snap time recorded at .70 seconds. Scott has good footwork and a quick ball release which allows him to get back into protection quickly. He has great lower body explosiveness with good ball rotation. Scott will be a good fit for any protection scheme.

Prokicker.com, meanwhile, doesn't have Sypniewski in their top 25 for the class of 2013, though if his reported snap times are close to accurate, he's should probably be in the top couple spots.

[H/T to mgouser goblueritzy92 for dropping those links in the comments.]


Sypniewski's Scout profile, which probably was created 15 minutes ago, lists no other suitors besides Michigan.


Um, stats?


None listed, unfortunately. All of the FAKEs.


Yes, we've got highlights:

Oh, and it doesn't end there. For 15(!) more videos of Sypniewski snapping, click here.


When Sypniewski arrives on campus, Michigan will have Glanda as a redshirt senior at long snapper as well as 2012 preferred walk-on Tyler Tokarsky. Tokarsky, for what it's worth, says his plans to attend Michigan have not changed despite the news of Sypniewski's commitment. Sypniewski and Tokarsky should battle for the starting job in 2014, then hopefully we'll never hear from either again barring any improbable catches on fake field goals.

If you remember, Michigan did have a second preferred walk-on snapper lined up for the class of 2012, Taybor Pepper, but he chose to attend Michigan State when Mark Dantonio offered him a scholarship.


The Wolverines now sit at 21 commitments in a class that should reach 23-24, though one has to wonder if there's any concerns about extra attrition given the offer to a position normally filled by walk-ons or players who change positions. Michigan will likely still take a wide receiver—there's still a spot reserved for Laquon Treadwell, at least—and they could also add a cornerback, running back, or strongside defensive end.



June 6th, 2012 at 5:39 PM ^

This round goes to Dantonio. He grabbed up Taybor, forcing us to use a scholly on a long snapper. Trading schollies one for one seems like a good move for him, as our average rankings are so far apart. Operating under the assumption that Scott S. wouldn't have been offered if Tabor were walking on for Michigan.


June 6th, 2012 at 7:02 PM ^

This coaching staff just had an entire spring to evaluate their roster at ALL positions.

Clearly, Longsnapper was singled out as a position of need.  Position of need now filled.

Makes perfect sense to me.

To these football coaches, recruiting is about addressing holes, not finishing first on some meaningless recruiting website.  I think a lot of people tend to forget this.

And I'm still willing to bet we land 1 or 2 more elite level recruits.


June 6th, 2012 at 8:00 PM ^

Okay, that's fine.  We have many other holes that need addressing.  Most long-snappers are willing to walk on.  It makes zero sense to give one a scholarship.  What's the difference between a great long snapper and a good one?  One snap a year?  I'll take it, if it means using the scholarship on someone like Kendall Fuller.


June 6th, 2012 at 8:21 PM ^

Guess it depends when that moment happens.

You screw up a long snap in the National Championship game you'll be wishing you had prioritized the position.

This is a little perplexing but still a lot of time till the end of recruiting so we'll have to see what happens. Think it's totally consistent to be happy for him and yet perplexed at the same time.


June 6th, 2012 at 8:51 PM ^

Only the last few years. Historically the LS got a scholly after fall practices if there were some left, after people on the two deep got one, after the best backup kicker, and only then because of attrition. This is different since it's a four-year offer I believe.

It could just be the kid wowed the coaches personally. He won't add to the depth chart anywhere but I imagine this is a very low risk of not panning out to expectations.


June 6th, 2012 at 10:17 PM ^

It basically costs $50K a year to attend Michigan out of state. How many parents do you know who are ready to say, "Son, I'd rather spend $200,000 for you to attend Michigan than going to Illinois for free." If that's your situation, well, that's great. But it sure isn't reality for most of us. My guess is that if there was a decent walk on candidate living in the State of Michigan, they would have done what they could to get him to Michigan already.

I mentioned this briefly in another thread, and it bears mention here:  special teams are very important. Our punts, kickoffs, long snaps, field goals, kickoff coverage, and punt coverage account for a third of our performance. Michigan had a significant improvement in special teams from 2010 to 2011, and we can still improve in this area a lot. imhe, he is worth the scholarship.

turd ferguson

June 7th, 2012 at 4:16 AM ^

Your first paragraph might be the best, most reasonable defense of this scholarship that I've seen.

Your second paragraph is a little ridiculous. Just because there are three units to a football team - offense, defense, and special teams - doesn't make them equally important. Would you really be indifferent between a team with the best special teams unit in the country with an average offense & defense and a team with the best defense in the country with average special teams & offense?

I think this comes down to the value added by the player. If the alternative at LS was death, then this makes sense. If the alternative was a solid/good (but not great) long snapper, then I hate that we're likely passing up an offensive/defensive stud for a guy who, over his career, might account for one or two fewer bad plays than the likely alternative.


June 7th, 2012 at 9:14 AM ^

The thing is that special teams are a differentiator, they may not be AS important as offense or defense, but a lot of impact comes from comparitively few plays.  We've all seen what bad special teams can do to a team and I'd rather have the positive point swing that good special teams net you.

As stated earlier, if the end result of this scholarship means never having to worry about the snap on punts and kickoffs then it's a great call.  Besides, when I read the tea leaves I'm not all that encouraged about any remaining targets besides Treadwell and I even think he's 50/50 at  best, so to me the whole save scholarships for the 5-stars argument is a little unrealistic.  If the coaches think this is a need and a good use of a scholarship, then I'll go with it.

Welcome aboard Scott!  May you have a long and distinguished career of never having your name mentioned again,


June 7th, 2012 at 6:51 AM ^

I'm not one of the "upset people", but this kid is ranked second, above Pepper, on rankings put out by his own personal coach. So...whatever.

I think it IS time to retract the LOL Dantonio on the matter - he got the guy we wanted, after all, and did it at the same cost we replaced the guy. If offering a scholarship makes sense for Hoke, it hardly makes sense to laugh at Mork.

Red is Blue

June 7th, 2012 at 9:25 AM ^

I would argue that trading schollies one for one seems like a bad move for Dantonio.  The expectation is that the higher the ranking for a prospect, the more likely he is to develop into a quality player.  That means, if you've got lower ranked prospects, on average, you need more of them to end up with an equivalent number of quality players. 


June 7th, 2012 at 10:32 AM ^

I see and agree with most of what you're saying, but I don't want to use Sparty as a measuring apparatus, and not get caught up with trading scholarships one for one with them as a point of comparison.  I don't care what Dantonio does. 

UM has much more talent than MSU and over the course of time, they will go back to their rightful place in the world.  In short, we needent look to go blow for blow with them, we need to be beating Ohio in recruiting.  So, since they are minus some schollies over the next few years, it makes sense to make this move now.  I'm also not one of the mad ones, and I trust Hoke and his staff.  I do wonder if maybe a preferred status would have been better, but Hoke has proved to me he knows what he's doing. 

Red is Blue

June 7th, 2012 at 12:44 PM ^

Certainly, MSU isn't the only opponent and is not even the most important opponent.  Also agree that UM should not define itself by how it does relative to one school.  That is a recipe for being a "little brother."  That being said my intended point was, even if someone feels that a direct comparison to MSU is appropriate and the only thing that matters, I still don't agree with the orginal premise that somehow MSU "won" in this deal.


June 6th, 2012 at 5:42 PM ^

I dont care if I get negged for this, but I can't be the only one who is upset about this. Michigan should be able to get a long snapper as a walk on or preferred. Learning to long snap is not that difficult, it could be taught to someone already on board. 


June 6th, 2012 at 5:56 PM ^

You should probably learn to do it and join the football team then. And for all that say long snapping is easy, I give you Pouncey snapping to Brantley at Florida, what a disaster. Or anyone snapping to Denard when Molk was hurt.

3.45Million NFL contract to be a long snapper: http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d8287e8f1/article/report-giants-resign-pro-bowl-long-snapper-zak-deossie-

It's obviously not that easy.


June 6th, 2012 at 6:25 PM ^

A long snapper doesn't have to concern himself with blocking schemes (not to say he doesn't block, but it's pretty straightforward what he has to do after the snap), audibles, and varied snap counts the way a center does. Usually a center's failure to perform a good snap is due to distraction, not an inability to do the motion.

Mr Mxyzptlk

June 6th, 2012 at 6:43 PM ^

High School kids do just fine with long snapping.  It doesn't seem that hard.  I'm with the pissed off crowd wondering why a walk on can't suffice?  But that was interesting to see that the other major football powers feel its an important enough position that they will burn a scholly on it.  Trust the coaches and all that.... Welcome Scott Sypniewski!


June 6th, 2012 at 7:33 PM ^

Yeah, our long snapper in high school didn't screw up a snap in two years.  Sure, they might not have been as crisp as you like them in college, but he wasn't in college.  This guy went to Michigan with me, and never thought about long snapping for the team. 

What's my point?  There are probably a dozen or more adequate long snappers at Michigan who aren't even on the football team, let alone the kids who are on the team who do little more than practice long snapping all the time. 


June 6th, 2012 at 5:49 PM ^

Quite a monkey wrench in the plans of every armchair recruiter here. My dream ending appears to be swirling down the drain. I'll be thankful if there is a 4 year period of no punts or FG's blocked, although I'll never remember why I'm thankful.


June 6th, 2012 at 5:50 PM ^

NFL teams use a roster spot for this kind of player. If it was so easy to be outstanding at this task they wouldn't do so. He should make a difference with coverage on punts by snapping more quickly and accurately than a walk on and should help with field goal accuracy as well as reduce the possibility of blocked kicks and punts. Believe in the coaches. They know how important this position is for a football team.


June 6th, 2012 at 5:53 PM ^

How quickly people forget what a debacle our special teams were with the previous staff.

We now have a staff that not only recruits both sides of the ball as good or better than anyone and still finds time to sure-up our special teams. 

A complete football team coming to you soon in Ann Arbor.  Brady Hoke has earned the right to offer a scholarship to a long snapper if he sees it fit.


June 7th, 2012 at 8:20 AM ^

The kid probably can long snap and tackle / block as well. If he lays a hit on a guy after a kick, or gets the ball back on target and in Wiles or Hagerups hands .1 seconds faster than an average walk on, I'm all for it... I enjoy having the special teams advantage against our rivals and competition.