Back from Piscataway, New Jersey where I covered the men's basketball team and the only thing I'll say about the Panthers win over Rutgers (other than Mike Rice is going to get that thing rolling soon) is this -- I found it interesting that on a huge recruiting weekend and with the No. 2 team in the country visiting the RAC, the Rutgers football coaches decided it was more productive to take the prospects into New York City Saturday night than bring them to the basketball game.
That speaks volumes about the state of Rutgers basketball program right now and also where it fits in the grand scheme of things there. Of course, given the choice between a night at the RAC or a night in the Big Apple, I know where I'd be headed and it wouldn't be to watch basketball.
Anyway, back on topic - There were eight players over the weekend -- from what I can tell based on conversations I've had (believe me, things are happening so fast in so many different directions, I'm not even sure Todd Graham knows the actual number) - who committed to the Panthers which brings the number to 15 (17 if you include the two kids already enrolled, Khaynin Mosley-Smith and Zenel Demhasaj). That means the class is almost done as there were about 19 or 20 scholarships available.
Here is a rundown of the newest commits but if you want to see the entire class, here is a link to a list where you can do that.
These guys committed this weekend and my only comment - or question is this --(to quote that old lady in those old Wendy's commercials) "WHERE'S THE BEEF?"
In other words, I see a lot of corners, safeties and running backs but there is still only one offensive lineman - Artie Rowell, who committed last May to the old staff -- in the class and that is, at least a little bit, alarming.
Lloyd Carrington (CB, Lincoln high school, Dallas, Texas, 6-0, 182 pounds). Carrington had a lot of offers including some really good ones like Oklahoma State, Baylor, Houston, Minnesota, Utah, TCU and of course, Tulsa, which means he already had some connection to Todd Graham. He is a big corner who seems to be fast – he is listed as a guy who runs the 40 in 4.43 seconds - but none of that is relevant until we see him here in August.
Devin Cook (TE, Beaver Falls high school, Beaver Falls, 6-4, 230 pounds). Cook had offers from Cincinnati and a number of MAC schools. Cook is athletic, he is a pretty good basketball player and could blossom in Pitt’s new offense.
Jason Frimpong (CB, Irving MacArthur high shool, Irving, Texas, 5-11, 180). I wrote about him in a blog entry early this weekend. He was a Tulsa commit and followed Todd Graham to Pitt.
Ronald Jones (WR, Fort Meade high school, Fort Meade, Florida, 5-8, 165). Another so-called 4.4 guy – again, that is what he is listed as so if you’ve seen him play and insist he isn’t that fast, well, don’t shoot the messenger about it…..I don’t know much about Jones, his offers were from The Citadel, Georgia Southern and Marshall.
Jevonte Pitts (DB, Woodland Hills high school, 5-10, 175). Pitt was his only offer and make no mistake, his family ties – he is the cousin of LaFayette Pitts, who as of now is committed to Rutgers but that could be changing here in the next day – are a big reason he is attractive to Pitt. Apparently, this Pitts is likely headed to prep school but this situation could be fun to follow for a few days.
Roderick Ryles – (DB, Dr. Phillips high school, Orlando, Fla. 6-1, 185 pounds) A safety and one of two players from his high school who committed over the weekend. This is another one who, at least based on his offers, looks like a good pick up, especially this late. He was being recruited by Tony Gibson and company at Michigan. He had offers from Michigan, Texas Tech, Arkansas, South Florida, West Virginia and Washington State.
LaQuentin Smith – (OLB, Dr. Phillips high school, Orlando, Fla., 6-1, 205 pounds) Smith is Ryles teammate but the two told Chris Peak of Pantherlair that they weren’t a package deal – it just so happened they both liked Pitt. Smith had a ton of offers – and a lot of good ones – so he appears to be another good late addition to the class. The best of his offers are South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, Arkansas, Cincinnati, Purdue and Illinois.
Steve Williams – (DB, Calvary Day school, Savannah, Ga., 6-2, 197 pounds) He is a “we liked his athleticism on film” guy and thay usually means, he’s a bit of a reach but at this late date the staff has to take some chances. Williams had only two other offers – Middle Tennessee State and Georgia Southern.