Big 12: Nick Hirschman
Sounds like time for a 2011 recruiting update, no?
Here's how they sit after the first few months of 2011 recruiting. All the information below is from our ESPNU database. And again, remember, each of these commitments in non-binding, and players won't be able to sign an official letter of intent until February 2011.
Also, until they're officially gone, Colorado and Nebraska will get normal treatment/coverage on the blog. So, even though these recruits may never play a down in the Big 12, they'll be on this list.
Here's the bottom half, come back this afternoon for the top of the Big 12.
7. Kansas State
Total commitments: 10
ESPNU150 members: None
Top recruit: Sam Harvill, DT
No surprises here: Five of Snyder’s 10 recruits are junior college transfers.
Total commitments: 10
ESPNU150 members: None
Top recruit: Michael Cummings, QB
Turner Gill lost out on in-state star Bubba Starling, but got another QB in Cummings from Killeen, Texas. He also added a pair of offensive linemen over the weekend, most recently junior college transfer Nick Johnson.
Total commitments: 9
ESPNU150 members: None
Top recruit: Jonathan Lee, WR
Art Briles is bringing the beef to Waco: Seven of his nine commits are linemen or tight ends over 245 pounds.
10. Texas A&M
Total commitments: 7
ESPNU150 members: None
Top recruit: Jonathon Henderson, ATH
Four of the Aggies’ seven commitments are defensive, and another -- Henderson -- could play corner.
11. Iowa State
Total commitments: 6
ESPNU150 members: None
Top recruit: Kyle Boyd, ILB
Boyd will join a solid group of young linebackers in Ames.
Total commitments: 3
ESPNU150 members: None
Top recruit: Dexter Foreman, QB
Dan Hawkins added Foreman and another top 100 QB, Nick Sherry, to compete with incoming freshman Nick Hirschman to help succeed Tyler Hansen.
But it could also be great for Hawkins' "guys" to have a clear starter and leader entering summer workouts, allowing either Hawkins or Hansen to embrace the role of "starting quarterback," and all the off-the-field effects of that role. Clearly, Hawkins prefers the former.
Hansen took over for Cody Hawkins mid-game during an Oct. 10 loss to Texas and started for the remainder of the season. During that stretch, the Buffaloes were 2-5, with wins over Kansas and Texas A&M. In Hawkins' starts, the Buffaloes went 1-4 with the lone win coming against Wyoming and losses against West Virginia, Toledo and Colorado State.
In Saturday's spring game, Hansen threw three touchdowns and completed 17 of 22 passes for 170 yards. Hawkins threw two touchdowns and completed 20 of 26 passes for 220 yards.
You can't put too much stock into it, but Hansen led the Gold team to a 37-27 win. Both have to be encouraged by completing over 75 percent of their attempts.
"I don't know why, unless you had a guy who won 10 games, would say, 'Yeah, you're the guy,'" Dan Hawkins said.
Judging by those comments, only wins will secure either quarterback a job, and the Buffaloes won't have a chance at any more for almost four months.
A few other notes from the Buffaloes spring game:
- Michigan transfer Toney Clemons had plenty of eyes on him all spring, and they must have liked what they saw. In the draft for the spring game, the Colorado captains selected Clemons with the first overall pick. Clemons caught four passes for 33 yards.
- The second pick in the draft, All-Big 12 offensive tackle Nate Solder, caught a touchdown pass from Hawkins on a tackle-eligible play at the goal line in the fourth quarter. "We were supposed to run it all last season," Solder said. "We finally got the chance."
- The Gold team busted out the Haka before the game, a Polynesian war dance made popular most recently by Hawaii in college football and the All Blacks, New Zealand's rugby union team.
- Freshman quarterback Nick Hirschman threw one pass in the scrimmage -- and completed it to Andre Simmons for an 83-yard touchdown. That's good enough for a quarterback rating of 1127.20.
- As the versatile nickelback, Nebraska senior Eric Hagg is what made the "Peso" defense click in the final two games of 2009, and he's the key once again this spring, writes Steven M. Sipple of the Lincoln Journal Star.
- Aundrey Barr and Brian Duncan are separating themselves as the premier pass-rushers for the Red Raiders, reports Don Williams of the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal.
- Colorado QB Nick Hirschman is buddying up with the big guys three months into his college experience, writes B.G. Brooks at CUBuffs.com.
- Oklahoma State RB Kendall Hunter earned the Nate Fleming Award at Oklahoma State for overcoming personal obstacles on the way to academic success.
- Matt Hayes of The Sporting News puts two Big 12 players on his list of five soon-to-be household names, headlined by Missouri's Blaine Gabbert.
- Texas has picked up its 19th commitment for 2011, Quincy Russell, a defensive tackle from San Antonio.
- Mike Leach is scheduled to arrive in Stillwater and serve as a consultant to Dana Holgorsen while he installs his offense at Oklahoma State.
- Colorado is going back to the schoolyard to divvy up the teams for its spring game, writes Kyle Ringo of the Boulder Daily Camera.
Cha'pelle Brown, DB: Brown led the Buffaloes in tackles as a senior with 96 stops and was tabbed as an All-Big 12 performer.
Riar Geer, TE: Geer caught 36 passes for 402 yards and four touchdowns in 2009, his best season ever. Raw youngster DaVaughn Thornton could step in to replace the tight end.
Rodney Stewart, RB: Stewart led the Buffaloes in rushing and dominated in touches with talented backs Darrell Scott and Demetrius Sumler still on the roster. Without either on the team, those touches should just go up, unless one of the handful of freshmen running backs coming to campus in the fall excels early. With limited numbers in the spring, though, he's not playing the role of workhorse right now, but he could be during the season.
Scotty McKnight, WR: His spring is done, but the sprain and chipped bone shouldn't limit him in the offseason or preseason camp. McKnight caught 76 balls for 895 yards and six touchdowns last season, and another big year could help Tyler Hansen or Cody Hawkins provide some consistency and stability at quarterback.
Nick Hirschman, QB: Hirschman has enrolled early and comes to Colorado as the No. 26 quarterback in America. The 6-foot-3, 216-pounder's arrival could mean the graduation of Cody Hawkins won't end the competition at quarterback.
Harold Mobley, WR: At 6-foot-4 and 225 pounds, Mobley is built more like a tight end. With a 39-inch vertical and 4.55 40-yard dash time, he'll hardly play like one. In the Big 12, size and athleticism don't always translate to success, and the earlier Mobley sees that, the greater his chances for success.
More Revolving Door:
- Seantrel Henderson tells Thayer Evans of the New York Times that Texas never tried to recruit him – not even one recruiting letter or brochure.
- Tommy Tuberville has hit the road to promote the healing process at Texas Tech, the Dallas Morning News’ Chuck Carlton reports. And Tuberville also mentions that he has no preconceived notion about quarterbacks Steven Sheffield and Taylor Potts heading into spring practice.
- Oklahoma added a 29th and final member of its recruiting class as Kenny Stills’ eligibility was approved by the NCAA Clearinghouse, the Tulsa World’s John Hoover reports.
- Richard Tijerina’s excellent “Breakfast with Bevo” has an lookback with Austin American-Statesman staffers as what would have happened if Colt McCoy hadn’t gotten hurt against Alabama.
- Mike Gundy tells Bill Haisten of the Oklahoman that he was “stretched too thin” by his coaching duties, leading to the hiring of new offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen.
- Tom Lemming provides an in-depth analysis of Texas’ recruiting class for Alan Trubow of the Austin American-Statesman. And Trubow also looks at the Longhorns’ 2011 recruiting needs.
- The College Football News’ Pete Fiutak writes about Oklahoma’s recruiting class, which he thinks may have been the Big 12’s strongest class.
- The Denver Post’s Tom Kensler reports that Colorado will honor members of its 1990 national championship team at a 20-year reunion at the Oct. 2 game against Georgia.
- The San Jose Mercury-News’ Jon Wilner checks out Los Gatos High in Los Gatos, Calif., which has produced four college quarterbacks including Colorado’s Nick Hirschman.
- The Omaha World-Herald’s Rich Kaipust reports that Bo Pelini likes his emerging depth along the offensive line.
- Former Texas Tech assistants Bill Bedenbaugh and Seth Littrell were named by Arizona coach Mike Stoops as co-offensive coordinators, Ryan Finley of the Arizona Daily Star reports.
- The Lincoln Journal Star’s Steve Sipple examines the potential positional fluidity for the members of Nebraska’s recruiting class.
Total class: 21
ESPN 150: 0
By position: TE 3, RB 3, ATH 2, WR 2, OT 2, G 2, LB 2, DE 2, QB 1, CB 1, K 1
By state: California 8, Colorado 2, Texas 2, Hawaii 1, Ohio 1, New Jersey 1, Louisiana 1, Arizona 1, Alabama 1, Florida 1, North Carolina 1, Maryland 1.
Already enrolled in school: 2.
The big ones: QB Nick Hirschman, the nation’s No. 26 quarterback, has already enrolled in college with hopes of getting a head start at playing time. WR Harold Mobley, the nation’s No. 64 wide receiver, is the physical kind of pass-catcher who will mesh well with Marques Simas as a pair of bookend receivers.
Sleeper: K Justin Castor will receive the chance to contend for immediate playing time as he battles slump-ridden Aric Goodman for playing time.
Needs met: After losing Darrell Scott and Demetrius Sumler, the Buffaloes needed depth at running back and met it with the addition of underrated Tony Jones and sleepers Trea Jones and Justin Torres. Six tight ends or H-backs graduated from the team last year and coach Dan Hawkins addressed the need with three players keyed by three-star recruit Justin Favors, the nation's No. 38 tight end. Hirschman will help at quarterback, but the Buffaloes missed out on Munchie Legaux, a late defection to Cincinnati.
Analysis: The critics are out after Hawkins’ class, which featured no recruits with more than three stars and only two players from Colorado. It was the first time in Hawkins’ tenure the Buffaloes failed to crack the top 50 nationally in recruiting rankings. And they were hurt by the defection of RB Mister Jones (Texas A&M) and QB Danny Spond (Notre Dame), two top in-state prospects who both chose to go elsewhere after originally committing to the Buffaloes.
What Dan Hawkins said: "Athletically, top to bottom, they might be the most-athletic class we have had. ... There are a ton of guys you miss on. There are always guys that you don't get and that's the nature every year. ... Everyone around America is fired up on signing day with optimism. I think with this class, there is just a tremendous amount of quality there and I am very impressed by the kind of people they are."
Scouts Inc. grade/rankings: C-minus, ninth in Big 12.
In between all of the signing announcements and the analysis throughout the day, how about some stories from across the Big 12 to keep you occupied throughout your lunch hour and before the news conferences later this afternoon?
- ESPN.com retells some memorable stories from previous National Signing Days, including how Missouri lost Mount San Jacinto Junior College recruit Mike Anderson to Utah.
- Ruffin McNeill has added former Texas Tech coaching staff members Brandon Jones, Clay McGuire and Dennis Simmons to his staff at East Carolina.
- The Topeka Capital-Journal’s Tully Corcoran relates how Turner Gill recruited Keeston Terry and Brandon Bourbon out of the state of Missouri. And the St. Louis Globe-Democrat’s Alvin Reed wonders why Brandon Bourbon turned down Stanford to attend Kansas.
- Defensive backs Lavaughn Whigham and Phillip Warren from Miami Southridge High School, appear ready to commit to Texas Tech, the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal’s Don Williams reports.
- The Fort Worth Star-Telegram’s Wiilliam Wilkerson details the story lines of the final day of recruiting.
- Dallas-Fort Worth-area receivers Mike Davis, John Harris, Darius Terrell and Darius White are determined for success once they hit college at Texas, Mark Dent of the Dallas Morning News reports.
- New Kansas State recruits say that the stability fostered by Bill Snyder is a major reason for choosing the Wildcats, Austin Meek of the Topeka Capital-Journal reports.
- The Denver Post’s Tom Kensler talks with Colorado quarterback recruit Nick Hirschman about arriving early at college and his tutorial work with quarterback guru Bob Johnson. And Hirschman tells the San Jose Mercury-News’ Dennis Knight that he's arrived at Colorado intent on contending for early playing time with the Buffaloes.
- The Lincoln Journal Star breaks down Nebraska’s recruiting class commitments.
- The Boulder Camera’s Kyle Ringo reports that Colorado will learn Wednesday if it can seal a recruiting commitment from quarterback Munchie Legaux of New Orleans. Legaux gave the Buffaloes an early commitment last fall, but is still considering the Buffaloes and Cincinnati.
- Jon Solomon of the Birmingham News has some sobering information about recruiting success that might stop some of the excitement about the top classes that schools will announce today.
- The Dallas Morning News’ Laken Litman analyzes Case McCoy’s chances for playing time at Texas -- as he follows in the footsteps of his older brother, Colt.
- The Des Moines Register’s Randy Peterson reports that Iowa State will have its best recruiting class since 2002 with 26 commitments expected.
Here's a look at what immediate recruiting needs each North Division team must address first.
Running back: With the departure of Darrell Scott and Demetrius Sumler, Dan Hawkins needs to find some talent at running back. With only three scholarship backs on the roster, an immediate talent infusion is needed. Tony Jones is the only commitment and the Buffaloes could use size from a bigger back.
Tight end/H-back: All of the positions are important in Kent Riddle’s offense, and six players graduated from those positions in December. The only player who will return with experience includes junior tight end Ryan Deehan, so Hawkins needs players at the position who can help immediately.
Quarterback: With Tyler Hansen set at quarterback and Cody Hawkins set to graduate after next season, the Buffaloes still would like to add some depth at the position. Nick Hirschman has enrolled early to get a head start on his development, and Josh Moten appears ready to enroll after failing to make his grades before last season.
Across the board talent infusion: The Cyclones already have added 24 commitments for the upcoming season. Junior college players like massive offensive lineman Jon Caspers, defensive end Rony Nelson, wide receiver Anthony Young and tight end Ricky Howard should provide an immediate lift. And look for coach Paul Rhoads to add a couple of more to capitalize on the late momentum from the Insight Bowl victory.
Running back: Preparing for the future will be important as Alexander Robinson will be entering his senior season. Freshmen Beau Blankenship still has some developing to do and Jeremiah Schwartz has left the program. The Cyclones have added depth with the addition of Duran Hollis and Shontrelle Johnson. Don’t be surprised if Hollis moves positions once he comes to college if Johnson develops as expected.
Wide receiver: The Cyclones had trouble making big plays and could use a talent boost at the position. Leading 2009 receiver Marquis Hamilton has graduated and Jake Williams will be a senior next season. Recruits Jarvis West and Chris Young appear to have addressed those needs.
Defensive end: The Jayhawks could use a talent upgrade here with occasional starters Jeff Wheeler and Maxwell Onyegbule graduated, and Jake Laptad and Quintin Woods entering their senior seasons in 2010. It became more of a need after Oklahoma beat out the Jayhawks for top defensive end prospect Geneo Grissom earlier this week.
Quarterback: With unproven Kale Pick set to take over for Todd Reesing, the Jayhawks have added junior college transfer Quinn Mecham of Snow Junior College to immediately contend for playing time. Meacham threw for 3,091 yards and 40 touchdowns last season and has already captured the attention of new offensive coordinator Chuck Long because of his experience in the spread offense.
Secondary: New coach Turner Gill also needs help in the secondary where starters Darrell Stuckey and Justin Thornton were seniors and Philip Strozier, Chris Harris and Calvin Rubles will be seniors next season.
Adjust time-held notions to recruiting: Bill Snyder said recruiting seemed “out of kilter” in his first season back because of how teams now are in a hurry to link up with rising juniors. This strategy has caused Snyder to change his recruiting strategy, looking into signing more players earlier than in his previous coaching strategy.
Junior-college additions again will be critical in the trenches: Snyder has attacked the junior colleges with his traditional fervor as he attempts to unearth a couple of under-recruited gems in the offensive line and defensive lines -- the Wildcats’ two primary needs. Also, the Wildcats need some immediate help from the junior colleges after a recruiting imbalance during the last two seasons under Ron Prince that has left them with a need for immediate contributors. Snyder has estimated that up to 13 players will enroll at the semester break to contend immediately for playing time.
Quarterback: Even with a crowded group of potential contenders at the position, Snyder is still considering another quarterback. Carson Coffman, Sammuel Lamur, Collin Klein and Oregon transfer Chris Harper all are in the mix at the position heading into spring practice.
Wide receiver: The Tigers have a lot of talent returning, but still will lose leading 2009 receiver Danario Alexander and Jared Perry. The opportunity for eventual playing time will be there for new arrivals, although Jerrell Jackson, Brandon Gerau, T.J. Moe and Wes Kemp will be back.
Nose tackle: The graduation of Jaron Baston and Bart Coslet’s senior-to-be status opens up a position for a contribution in the trenches for the Tigers.
Secondary: All four of Missouri’s projected starters next season -- cornerbacks Carl Gettis and Kevin Rutland and safety Jarrell Harrison and Jasper Simmons -- will be seniors. The Tigers need to restock depth at the position and perhaps move it forward from this class.
Defensive end: The Cornhuskers could use an additional player with Barry Turner graduating and Pierre Allen set to enter his senior season in 2010. They are in the hunt with Oregon for Owamagbe Odighizuwa, a heralded speed rusher from Portland, Ore., who would be the crown jewel in the Cornhuskers’ incoming class if he commits.
Wide receivers: Many players are back, although the Cornhuskers could use an infusion of speed at the position. Niles Paul will be a senior and more talent is needed to make the Cornhuskers competitive with the athletic teams in the South Division like Texas, Oklahoma and Texas Tech.
Safety: Starters Matt O’Hanlon and Larry Asante both will be graduating and Eric Hagg will be a senior in 2010. The Cornhuskers will need some help to join with youngsters Courtney Osborne, Austin Cassidy and P.J. Smith at the position.
Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin
More information keeps coming out of Manhattan in the news story that new Kansas State athletic director John Currie probably wishes would die.
Unfortunately for Currie in his new job, that's not the case.
The Associated Press reports that the Kansas Board of Regents may consider taking a greater oversight role of athletics at all six state universities. That discussion comes after a recent audit found numerous questionable transactions at KSU.
The Manhattan Mercury's Carrie Miller reports that new KSU president Kirk Schulz and Currie will take questions from students, faculty and staff at a meeting Monday at the KSU student union. The story makes it a point to inform readers that the general public isn't invited to the meeting because of a fear of a lack of room for all those who would like to attend.
The NCAA already has told KSU officials it won't get involved because it didn't present an NCAA issue or the lack of institutional control at the institution.
But I still would imagine that the Wildcats' Sept. 5 opener against Massachusetts can't come soon enough for Currie.
Until then, here are a few lunchtime links to help familiarize him with his new conference.
- The Tulsa World's Dave Sittler writes that contract hikes to Bob Stoops and his staff were accompanied by a significant reminder of their value to the school -- a gift of $3 million back to the school's general academic fund. And Tulsa World sports editor Mike Strain explains why Stoops is worth every penny of his new contract.
- Nebraska recruit Eric Martin, a linebacker from Moreno, Calif., tells the Lincoln Journal Star's Brian Christopherson he is confident he will make his grades this summer and report to the Cornhuskers next month. Martin was one of only two linebackers in Nebraska's 2009 recruiting class.
- The Bryan Eagle's Robert Cessna analyzes which athletic department had a better year -- Texas or Texas A&M.
- The Dallas Morning News' Brandon George reports that former Texas Tech quarterback Graham Harrell's father, Sam Harrell, is battling Multiple Sclerosis. Sam Harrell, a noted Texas high school football coach, was diagnosed with the illness four years ago but has decided to tell everybody about the condition over the last several weeks.
- Paul Myerberg of the New York Times' college sports blog, The Quad, ranks Kansas State No. 70 in his countdown of teams heading into the season.
- Linebacker Jared Parham of Coppell, Texas, is Missouri's seventh football commitment in the 2010 recruiting class, the Columbia Daily Tribune reported. Parham chose the Tigers over offers from Arkansas, North Carolina and Texas Tech.
- Phil Steele ranks Oklahoma No. 4 in his national countdown.
- Quarterback Nick Hirschman of Las Gatos, Calif., has committed to Colorado, the Boulder Daily Camera reports. Hirschman is the fourth commitment for the Buffaloes in the 2010 recruiting class and first commitment from out of state.