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Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Early Offer: Frustrating final week

By Jeremy Crabtree

The Early Offer is RecruitingNation's regular feature, giving you a daily dose of recruiting in the mornings.

Today’s offerings
After recruiting prospects for two years, it’s now down to the final week for coaches chasing players in the 2014 class. That brings frustrations about recruits changing their minds over and over. Also, how is Tennessee able to land so many recruits this year? And NC State has assembled a sneaky good class.

Decommitments could alter recruiting
Coaches have gone on and on and on about how there is a culture of decommitments in today’s recruiting world, especially in the final week leading up to signing day. With signing day officially seven days away, it’s become common place for recruits to jump from one school to another. And it’s not just isolated to one part of the country. It’s everywhere. Many coaches, even some at the top programs in the country, have grown frustrated and believe something needs to be done. “It’s gotten so bad that it’s almost not even worth taking commitments in the spring,” one Pac 12 recruiting coordinator said. While it might never get to that point, don’t be surprised if a lot of coaching staffs have some deep discussions on how they tackle early recruiting after signing day.

Butch Jones
Butch Jones' Vols have taken advantage of having early enrollees.
Early bird gets worm
Tennessee coach Butch Jones continued his successful 2014 haul with the addition of four-star running back Derrell Scott (Havelock, N.C./Havelock), No. 109 in the ESPN 300, on Monday. Scott’s pledge raised a lot of eyebrows nationally because he is the Vols’ 34th commitment. Many fans across the country are wondering how Tennessee can have that many players in the class, especially with each scholarship class limited to 25 players. The answer? Early enrollees. The Vols have already introduced 14 early enrollees, many of whom can be thrown into past recruiting classes’ total, giving Tennessee room to still recruit more players for this year’s group. “Tennessee has never truly been at 25 if you look at the numbers,” one SEC assistant said. “I know because we looked and tried to figure out how they can take that many players. They have taken advantage of early enrollees better than any other school and should be commended for it. You’ll see more and more schools do the same thing now if they have space.”

Class I really like
I know NC State isn’t in the Top 25 at this point, and it likely won’t be able to make the climb before signing day. But there’s something about this class that catches your attention. Coach Dave Doeren knew he needed to recruit a little bit of everything after the Pack finished 3-9 overall and 0-8 in the ACC, and that’s exactly what this class features. Quarterback? Check. Plenty of skill on the perimeter? Check. Much needed help on both the offensive line and defensive line? Check and check. There’s also another thing that stands out about this group. I really like how many of the players have good football IQ. In many senses, Doeren recruited players who were high quality, but also fit his brand of football. So, while you might not see a lot of national hoopla around the NC State class next Wednesday, if I’m a Pack fan, I’m really happy.