Tuesday, March 31, 2009

East Central - 2009 Recruiting Class

Need Help:
Offensive Line - Tigers lost honorable mention LSC North performers in Tim Bills and Jay Reaves. Justin Nail (1st LSC North) returns, but will need help. Several freshmen were pressed into service last year, so there is some additional experience.

Defensive Backs - Three starters are gone from last year's secondary. The lone returning starter is Trevor Carpenter.

Need Depth:
Quarterback - Return All-LSC North Marcus Johnson (LSC North Offensive Back of the Year), who threw for 3,100 yds and 20 TDs last year. He will be a senior this fall, so a successor will need to be groomed.

Linebackers - Tait Langston has exhausted his eligibility, but Curtis Niccum and Ryan Madison will be back.

Defensive Line - Brandon Hopstein (HM LSC North) was a senior last year, but two other honorable mention LSC North honorees return, Darnell Barnes and Maurice Lanclos.

Running Back - Joshua Maldonado returns for his senior season. Collin Avery and Josh Dutton return to back him up. A few more bodies here would help.

Good Quality/Talent:
Wide Receivers - Keewan King (2nd LSC North), Tyrone Gibbs, Jerold Loveless, Quade Soffell, Nigel Cooper and Justin Heimer combined to catch 174 passes for 2,188 yds and 13 TDs. King and Gibbs were recently injured in a stabbing incident, and we are unsure of the severity of their injuries. Hopefully they will be fully recovered soon.

With the return of Tim McCarty to ECU, the focus of recruiting has changed. Instead of numerous junior college transfers, the Tigers signed 21 high school recruits, 14 from Oklahoma and 7 from Texas. Among the most touted are WR Terrance Crumpley, OL Tobyn Large, LB Curtis Fortenberry, Safety Norris Wrenn, and Athletes Airius Ervin and Colby Ogletree. With as many vacancies as the Tigers have, they should compete for playing time.

LSC Ranking - 11

Overall Grade: C
Much like SWO, bringing in just high schoolers makes it difficult to replace departing seniors unless the team has a pipeline ready to fill the holes. Though ECU was competitive against the LSC North, they may have to take their lumps this fall.

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