December 20, 2012

GBK Recruiting Notebook: Holiday Special

With Christmas just five days away, there are several prospects that have probably made their way up the Army coaching staff's Holiday Recruiting Wish List.

However, with college coaches going through the "Dead Period", at least for the next couple of weeks, where they are allowed to make only one call per week to a targeted recruit .... hopefully that "wish list" message has already come across loud and clear to the various prospects.

And one of the first true confirmation that the message hit home for Army will be the January 4th weekend. This will be huge period in recruiting for the staff, as the Black Knights kick-off their first weekend of official visits.

Some notables who are schedule to be in attendance are 3-star DE & Army commit, Andrew McLean; LB & Navy commit, Nathaniel Ozdemir; DE, Shawanye Lawrence; RB & Army commit, Nehemiah Brown; LB Seth Combs and several others.

And no other place encapsulates news, along with the notes about the recruiting targets pertinent to Army fans better than and here are a few to keep an eye on.

Ty Griffin, QB

"All three of the academies came to see me recently. They talked to me and my family. I talked to Air Force awhile, but we have set up an official visit date. The only official visit set up right now is on 1/11 with Georgia Tech."

GBK comments: Griffin is a "top recruiting" priority for the Black Knights. Already holding offers from Army and Navy, the athletic QB prospect recently picked up an offer from Air Force, rounding out the academy trifecta. However, there appears to be a new player in the game for Griffin and that's Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets will have Griffin on campus 1/11 for an official visit, although only time will tell if Georgia Tech pulls the trigger and extend an offer to Griffin. The prospect out of Kennesaw (Ga) McEachem, is looking to schedule visits to Army, Navy and Air Force.

Dallas Hayes, DT

"Army is still recruiting me. I spoke to them on Thursday. Coach Shields was suppose to come in for a house visit, but his dad became ill and he had to fly back an go take of his father. I'm pretty interested in Army, but my mom is the one with the most questions"

GBK comments: At 6-foot-2, 295 pounds, Hayes offers a combination strength, size and even quickness. And as GBK reported earlier, it was those attributes that saw Wyoming offer Hayes early on, only to pull the offer off the table. If Hayes is able to make the cut academically, don't be surprise if an offer from Army isn't forthcoming soon. Hayes is also receiving strong interest from Montana State.

Joey Kuperman, OL

"Things are going well. I still have the three academy offers. I will be coming up with my list of favorite schools soon. I watched the whole Army-Navy game and the thought of being able to play in that game is an awesome feeling and opportunity. The game and everything it stands for is amazing."

GBK: The 6-foot-1, 285 pound Kuperman is looking to schedule official visits to Army, Air Force, Cal-Poly and Navy and has made it clear that he is open to attending college anywhere in the country, as long as he is comfortable with the program.

Calvin Cass, DE

"I've been up there (West Point) for unofficials and I don't think an official is necessary at this time, but I'm going to visit Navy (officially) during the Martin Luther King weekend. I would say that my interest in Navy is medium to high. I was at the Army-Navy game and the game was amazing. I've never seen a game like that in person .... the atmosphere and everything."

GBK: If there is a "must get/want" list for the Army coaching staff, well Cass would be in the Top Five at the stage of the recruiting season. The 5-foot-9, 195 pounder out of Sicklerville (NJ) St. Augustine High School is a natural breakaway threat, along with being a Ray Rice clone when it comes to his physical stature and running style. On the season, this South Jersey Player of the Year (Daily Journal) rushed for 2,001 yards and 37 touchdowns. It appears that Navy has a slight edge over Army for Cass' talents, despite that his dad, Calvin Cass, Sr being a former outstanding running back himself at Army (1992). The elder Cass, finished his career ranked 21st on Army's all-time rushing list.

5. Kevin Sundberg, DT

"There are a lot of great school and a tough choice when I make it. I am going to visit Army, Air Force and I'm on my visit now to New Mexico ... so I will make my decision after visiting all three"

GBK: The 6-foot-2 1/2, 280 pounder has amazing upside and a clone of former Army defensive tackle standout, Mike Gann. Picking up Sundberg would be a huge feather in the 2013 recruiting cap. The Fowler (Cali.) Fowler High School prospect will be making his way to the West Point campus on 1/25. Presently, Army remains high on Sundberg's list of college possibilities.

8. Shawanye Lawrence, DE

"I'm visiting Army on the 4th, Fordham on the 11th, then South Carolina State on the 18th and the 25th in Charleston Southern. I am going to take all my visit, weigh all my options before I commit"

GBK: Lawrence has all of the physical tools to stud defensive end at the next level. He is another prospect that falls under Army's "Tom Brady" method of finding under the radar talent. As Sundberg is a clone of Gann, the 6-foot-4, 245 pound is a bigger version of Army's all-time sack machine, Josh McNary. To date, Army and Fordham are Lawrence's top two schools.

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