December 27, 2007

Spartans set to climb the rankings

Head Coach Mark Dantonio and his staff have already assembled a solid list of prospect for the class of 2008. With a little more than a month to go they are looking to put the finishing touches on the class and in the process shoot up the rankings. takes a closer look.

According to the rankings the Spartans are currently 42nd in the nation from a recruiting standpoint. While that ranking is not top 25, it is higher than teams such as Tennessee, Iowa, Virginia, Kentucky, Purdue, North Carolina and Rutgers.

The main reason the Spartans are 42nd in the nation has more to do with the amount of commitments than anything else. Most of the top teams in the national rankings have 20-25 commitments. The Spartans are still at 16. Some teams even have more than 25 commitments. Oklahoma State has 30 players listed, Miami has 28, Boston College has 27, and Alabama, Illinois and Virginia Tech all have 26.

If you simply project Michigan State current rankings to the 25 number, they would leap-frog over several teams and end up in the low 30's. That would be assuming that Michigan State did not land several of the big time prospects they are in on. If the Spartans land a few key prospects the will shoot up the rankings even higher than that.

  • In-State haul

    Michigan State already has an impressive list of in-state recruits led by top 10 prospects Fred Smith, Tyler Hoover and Keshawn Martin. The Spartans are still actively involved in the recruitment of 3 key in-state prospects, Nick Perry, Mark Ingram and Glen Winston. Those three prospects are rankled #1, #4 and # 10 in Michigan respectively.

    If the Spartans were to land all 3 of those players they would sky-rocket up the rankings. rankings formula is a complicated process, but commitments form those 3 players alone would move the Spartans up around a dozen spots in the rankings.

    The in-state recruits signed this year by Coach Dantonio and his staff could represent the best group of players the Spartans have assembled from within Michigan in 10-years. The focus Coach Dantonio and his staff have put on the Detroit area as well as the rest of the state has paid off.

  • Other recruits on the radar

    The Spartans are also after several other highly touted recruits such as linebackers Taylor Hill of Ohio and Sterling Lucas of South Carolina. Texas Defensive ends Jacqueis Smith and John Youboty are also on the radar as is 4-star center Hamani Stevens of California. Land two or three of the players listed below and the Spartans will most certainly be in the top 25.

  • The Unknown

    As always don't be surprised if a few unknown prospects arise as signing day approaches. Remember last year Michigan State actually added 4-star defensive lineman Michael Jordan and 3-star quarterback Nick Foles after signing.

    Teams often get sucked-up into taking highly touted prospects just for the sake of taking them, when they would be better served addressing the specific needs of the team at other positions. Don't expect that to happen with Coach Dantonio. knows for a fact that the staff has already had to tell some high-level recruits they are done at the position they play.

    In the end expects Michigan State to be ranked somewhere in the top 25 in the nation, but more importantly we expect they will have addressed the major concerns of the team with some players that will certainly make an impact right away. That is what recruiting is all about.

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