Mountain West 2014 Recruiting Roundup
By Joe Jenkins
We’re only four months removed from wrapping up the 2013 edition of National Signing Day, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t look ahead.
Recruiting is the oil in every college football team's engine: Everything moves along smoothly when it’s done properly, but not keeping an eye on it or bringing in the wrong ingredients can leave a coaching staff on the side of the road looking to bum a ride.
With two-thirds of the recruiting season left to play out, some stories are beginning to pop up in the Mountain West. Here’s a look at what’s on our radar in the early going.
San Diego State Is Getting Defensive
The Aztecs have six verbal commits in the early going, and five of them are slotted to line up on defense. Headlining the class so far is 6-foot-5, 200-pound OLB Donovan Buck, who was named the Defensive Player of the Year for the Imperial Valley League (California) last season.
CSU, Hawaii Surprising Early
Rams head coach Jim McElwain and the Warriors’ Norm Chow are walking similar paths. Both are coming off debut seasons that started poorly, but ended with signs of optimism. Both had 2013 recruiting classes that didn’t knock anybody’s socks off, and both are showing their recruiting chops early for the 2014 class.
McEwain only has two commits so far, but they both look talented enough to contribute early on the defensive side. DB Jyaz Jones picked the Rams over schools like Nebraska, Iowa, Baylor and Texas Tech. Jones is rated as one of the top 300 recruits in the country according to 247 Sports.
You won’t find many headlines about Warriors commit and QB Larry Tuileta. He’s not ranked by any of the major recruiting sites, but Chow has a long track record of being a quarterback whisperer. He helped Jim McMahon, Steve Young, Philip Rivers and Carson Palmer make it to the NFL, just to name a few.
Boise State is Doing…The Same Thing They Always Do
Stop me if you’ve heard this before: BSU head coach Chris Petersen is bringing in a class that has no big names, but looks to be a solid class.
Yet again, BSU has commits from a handful of so-called mid-range three-star recruits that have both the measurable and immeasurable qualities that will allow Petersen to mold them into a nationally-ranked team.
The Broncos may never make a big splash in the recruiting pool, but with the best winning percentage in the FBS during the last five years (.924), they prefer to save their cannonballs for when the games are being played.
Waiting To Get On The Board
According to Scout.com, there are four MWC teams still looking to land their first verbal commit for 2014: Fresno State, Nevada, Utah State and Wyoming. Both Nevada and USU are bound to be slow out of the blocks, however. Both teams are breaking in new coaches this season.