Official 2021 Gophers Football Recruiting Updates Thread: Links, Tweets, Videos etc

BarnBurner

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This class, along with the transfers, is going to be good enough. The Dickerson business is over. Time to hype up the guys who will be playing here.
Right, and it seems pj is having some trouble landing these types of difference makers.
 

MNVCGUY

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Agreed. I think people are stuck on Dickerson's recruiting rankings, but are forgetting we have two other corners who look like studs in this class (Ortiz, a 4-star and Walley, who had multiple SEC offers). Most years, we'd be doing backflips to have a SINGLE CB recruit like either one of these. This year, we got excited about the possibility of Dickerson, but now some people are "disappointed" in the class? GTFO. One player - especially when we have multiple other quality recruits at the same position - does not make or break a class. Some people need to get a grip.
Yeah, anyone disappointed by this class is being unreasonable. Bummed about Dickerson is fair and wishing we could have cleaned up a little better in state is also fair. But if this class by Minnesota standards is disappointing to you then your expectations are way too high at this point.

Potentially one of the best classes we have ever had here on paper and a clear sign that Fleck is moving recruiting in the right direction. Not going to happen overnight but the gains are clear to be seen for anyone not stuck dwelling on the negative.
 

PoockItInfor6

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This class was exactly what we needed to go from the NW model of being good every couple years to being a force at the top consistently. The transfers to help even out the classes, I am so excited for this fall and getting back in our beautiful stadium watching these kids ball out!
 

BarnBurner

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It does? I'd call Rashod Bateman, Mo Ibrahim, Tanner Morgan, Dunlap, Faalele all pretty big difference makers. And that doesn't even include any recent recruits.
Yes, it does.

Bateman, of course. Morgan was as highly thought of as Dickerson?

Pulling in the Dickerson type kids is the recipe for long term, high level success. Recruiting has been much, much improved. imo, need those types to achieve top success.
 

WriterGoph

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Yes, it does.

Bateman, of course. Morgan was as highly thought of as Dickerson?

Pulling in the Dickerson type kids is the recipe for long term, high level success. Recruiting has been much, much improved. imo, need those types to achieve top success.
You're ridiculous. You're saying that he can't bring in difference makers and I just gave you a partial list if PROVEN DIFFERENCE MAKERS in the college game. You respond by asking if Morgan was as "highly thought of"? I don't care what some recruiting site says. I care how the players PJ recruits perform ON THE FIELD IN COLLEGE. You're talking about a projection for Dickerson - while we all know that plenty of 4 and 5-star kids don't develop as "projected". Really silly argument.

On top of that, if you want to talk ratings, this class already has higher-rated recruits at QB, DL, RB and CB than we have rarely - if ever - seen at Minnesota.

So either way you slice it, your gripe is massively flawed and just an example of you trying to stir shit up on a message board.
 

btowngopher

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Yes, it does.

Bateman, of course. Morgan was as highly thought of as Dickerson?

Pulling in the Dickerson type kids is the recipe for long term, high level success. Recruiting has been much, much improved. imo, need those types to achieve top success.
Fleck is doing better than anyone else ever has at Minnesota. The program is not at a level where a coach can walk in and land double digit four stars. Maybe a select few could pull that off, but could probably count them on one hand.
 

MaxyJR1

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Yes, it does.

Bateman, of course. Morgan was as highly thought of as Dickerson?

Pulling in the Dickerson type kids is the recipe for long term, high level success. Recruiting has been much, much improved. imo, need those types to achieve top success.
Getting the #2 and #4 kids from Illinois is probably more impactful for future recruiting than the #1 kid from NE (Even with his national ranking). Dickerson would have been a great get, but he didn't want to be here.

Fleck wants kids who want to be part of the program and if they don't they not sign or will transfer and he will fund replacements through transfers. He seems to be pretty cut and dry about that.
 

#2Gopher

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Right, and it seems pj is having some trouble landing these types of difference makers.
Respectfully disagree. Takes more than 3-4 years to get these guys to come around. Even posters on this board will say, "same old, same old." What do you think the recruits are thinking? same old, same old? Fleck is working hard to change the dynamics as to what people think and say.

I've got high expectations for Fleck and crew as we continue to move forward. Meanwhile, those who keep saying "same old, same old," need to think twice about it.
 

SanDiegoGopherFan

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Respectfully disagree. Takes more than 3-4 years to get these guys to come around. Even posters on this board will say, "same old, same old." What do you think the recruits are thinking? same old, same old? Fleck is working hard to change the dynamics as to what people think and say.

I've got high expectations for Fleck and crew as we continue to move forward. Meanwhile, those who keep saying "same old, same old," need to think twice about it.
Agreed. The football players that we are getting are much higher quality than any previous staff in my lifetime, mason, brew, kill. The fact we get kids with multiple P5 offers is a massive change. PJ's staff thus far have also show the ability to coach up kids to their potential.

I honestly think that in the next 2-3 years, we will usurp WI and IA as top dog in the West (covid years aside)
 

hungan1

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Respectfully disagree. Takes more than 3-4 years to get these guys to come around. Even posters on this board will say, "same old, same old." What do you think the recruits are thinking? same old, same old? Fleck is working hard to change the dynamics as to what people think and say.

I've got high expectations for Fleck and crew as we continue to move forward. Meanwhile, those who keep saying "same old, same old," need to think twice about it.
We finally have recruiting continuity except that they still have to cycle through imbalance classes. They are working to address that through transfers and targeted recruiting. We didn't hear much from guys like Boye Mafe until their third year.

That's were the player development is so important to middling programs like the Gophers. 5-Star/4-Star players don't grow on trees. You have to cultivate into higher caliber players that eventually will help beat teams like Penn State and Auburn.

They haven't quite make it to the hump where they can beat Wisy or Iowa. But, it's coming. When they do, that means they have won the Big Ten West title at a minimum.
 
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upnorthkid

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This is good info. The '21 class is still better than the '20 class. That said, the Dickerson loss hurts and I am still disappointed with the '21 results. The Gophers were in the BCS conversation, ended the season in the top 10, and couldn't really make any inroads in state or dramatically improve their recruiting nationally or regionally. If you look at the Minnesota/Wisconsin/Iowa/Nebraska group, we lost 3 instate kids total to Wisconsin/Iowa, Iowa lost one each to Wisconsin/Nebraska. We ended up being the only school in the group to not poach one from the other 3 and we also lost the most.

Definitely not saying the class is bad, just that I am a bit disappointed that we didn't do a little better. If Dickerson ends up at Oregon, that will be 3 kids they've flipped from us. Hopefully we're in the position to return the favor someday.
Just a comment on that in the context of the guys instate.
Mahlman committed 9/22 right after we pulled out a nail biter Georgia Southern and barely scraped through the non-con undefeated. Writing was on the wall there way prior to that season happening.
Sullivan committed 11/24, about a week after we lost at Iowa with us already having Eastern on board.
Ratzlaff was committed to play hockey and for about a year has had the rumor on the hockey boards of it was MN for hockey or WI for football and he had already decided that, just was deciding on which sport.

I think it's something that can't really be captured just by looking at one year, especially when you factor in the relationships and the sentiment around the program that kids would be feeling prior to us having the big year. This coming year will be far more telling, to me anyway, on if there are legs to us having the big year given kids will likely have more ability to travel and some guys may have had more interest sparked on the heels of the prior big year.
 

EG#9

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I don’t understand the disappointment and expectations to be landing top 25 classes. One good season isn’t going to change things that dramatically. Our best class ever was rated 26 and it was built on hype with one of the most highly regarded recruiters in the country in Brewster, and included several jucos and Marquise Gray who if I remember had some academic hurdles to clear. This is the highest rated class since that one, and would easily be rated higher if it was a full class. It really shouldn’t affect anything whether we get kids from instate or rival states or they get them from here. I don’t get the super high recruiting expectations when it hasn’t even been done once ever.
I don't get not having expectations. If you lose in state kids to Iowa/Wisconsin/Nebraska, don't return the favor, and don't destroy them on the national scene then what's your path forward? Iowa and Wisconsin in particular have long tenured experienced coaches who are simply better with X's and O's than Coach Fleck. Coach Fleck has to close the gap in other ways. I don't consider my expectations "super high". The difference between disappointed (not devastated or angry) and pretty happy with '21 for me is keeping Dickerson and one of the 3 guys that left the state for Iowa/Wisconsin. That puts the Gophers at the level of Wisconsin and maybe slightly above Wisconsin for this class.
 

Gophergrandpa

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I am very pleased with the "overall" 2021 class. The HS recruits are high quality (avg. rating 87.09!). Plus the five transfers are all quality, and all have a shot of helping immediately (assuming waiver for WR). Given our current needs and apparent gaps, I would gladly take these five transfers--who don't count as part of the 2021 class for ratings purposes--over five just-out-of-HS kids who, simply because of additional bodies, would have driven our "ranking" considerably higher. Transfers aren't the way to go on a regular basis, but sometimes it is the right thing to do. I think that, this year--an unusual year for the Gophers and for college football--it was manifestly the right thing.
 

btowngopher

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I don't get not having expectations. If you lose in state kids to Iowa/Wisconsin/Nebraska, don't return the favor, and don't destroy them on the national scene then what's your path forward? Iowa and Wisconsin in particular have long tenured experienced coaches who are simply better with X's and O's than Coach Fleck. Coach Fleck has to close the gap in other ways. I don't consider my expectations "super high". The difference between disappointed (not devastated or angry) and pretty happy with '21 for me is keeping Dickerson and one of the 3 guys that left the state for Iowa/Wisconsin. That puts the Gophers at the level of Wisconsin and maybe slightly above Wisconsin for this class.
What we want and what we should expect to happen are different things. Fleck will have to out recruit Iowa and Wisconsin, but not necessarily in class ratings, but in actual talent evaluations and team construction. If Chryst and Ferentz can out coach Fleck, then Fleck needs to find coordinators that he can lean on. At this point I expect classes ranked in the 30s and 40s. If Fleck can have some more strong seasons I’d expect that to improve.
 

Gophergrandpa

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It is OK to be disappointed that we swung and missed on highly-rated prospects like Dickerson, Townley, Mahlmann, Sullivan, etc. this year. It would be great to keep the top prospects at home, and grab a possible game-changer like Dickerson (if he gains 20 lbs.), but it can be hard when lots of kids want to go away to school and there weren't on-campus visits this year. That disappointment, however, doesn't mean, at least to me, that 2021 was a disappointing class. Not at all. Our 18 HS commits have an average ranking of 87.09, with four 4* players and many high 3*s. We could have had a meaningfully higher ranking if we took 24 or 25 HS commits. But we took five transfers instead (who don't count in the class ranking). The transfers include two other HS 4*s and two other proven starters. What's not to like???

Our 2020 class averaged 85.80, and ranked marginally lower than 2021 even though it had 24 HS commits (not just 18). The 2019 class averaged 85.79 with 21 HS commits and 3 transfers (including MDT and St. Juste). Our 2018 class averaged 86.22 with 25 HS commits (no transfers). Our 2017 class, Fleck's transition class, averaged 83.24 with 25 HS commits (no transfers). On the numbers alone, and especially after giving credit to the five uncounted transfers, it appears that 2021 is far and away Fleck's best class on paper. It blows away every previous Fleck class. Could 2021 have been even better if every card fell into place? Sure. But that shouldn't detract from how good the 2021 class, including transfers, actually appears to be. As Fleck reaches higher up the recruiting food chain, he's going to have some disappointing public losses--but he's also having a number of real wins we haven't seen much of in the past.

Finally, as has been hashed out on this page before, the bedrock foundation of a team like the Gophers, and even some true impact players, come from the ranks of players who are not as highly rated out of HS but have great development potential (which some coaches, like Fleck, have a knack for identifying). Our "low-rated" 2017 transition class (83.24 average) did manage to produce Andries, CAB, Paulson, JMS, Mo!, Tanner, Mafe and Otomewo--who have given the Gophers a lot of quality starts and wins. I'll gladly take the top-rated kids we can get who truly want to play for the Gophers, over higher-rated ones who for a variety of reasons clearly don't want to play here. So, granted, 2021 isn't the kind of class that is going to turn us into like a top-tier B1G team from a "recruiting numbers" standpoint, but it actually is a big advancement over what we have been producing in recruitment. College football is tough. The Gophers aren't in a position to suddenly leapfrog over 20 teams in recruiting. Our gains are likely to be steady and incremental. It's a process.
 
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60's Guy

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It does? I'd call Rashod Bateman, Mo Ibrahim, Tanner Morgan, Dunlap, Faalele all pretty big difference makers. And that doesn't even include any recent recruits.
Those are nice players...however the greatest ability is availability. Bateman played a couple games and was not a marquee performer, possible through no fault of his own. Dunlap and Faalele didn't play. Tanner regressed dramatically. Mo was awesome!
So, the past season was not exactly validation we recruit at a high level. Not too many guys received any votes for any post season teams.
 

ecoperson

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This is good info. The '21 class is still better than the '20 class. That said, the Dickerson loss hurts and I am still disappointed with the '21 results. The Gophers were in the BCS conversation, ended the season in the top 10, and couldn't really make any inroads in state or dramatically improve their recruiting nationally or regionally. If you look at the Minnesota/Wisconsin/Iowa/Nebraska group, we lost 3 instate kids total to Wisconsin/Iowa, Iowa lost one each to Wisconsin/Nebraska. We ended up being the only school in the group to not poach one from the other 3 and we also lost the most.

Definitely not saying the class is bad, just that I am a bit disappointed that we didn't do a little better. If Dickerson ends up at Oregon, that will be 3 kids they've flipped from us. Hopefully we're in the position to return the favor someday.
Wasn't Seth Green an OR commit?
 

WriterGoph

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Those are nice players...however the greatest ability is availability. Bateman played a couple games and was not a marquee performer, possible through no fault of his own. Dunlap and Faalele didn't play. Tanner regressed dramatically. Mo was awesome!
So, the past season was not exactly validation we recruit at a high level. Not too many guys received any votes for any post season teams.
I'm not really talking about 2020. The guy said PJ "has a problem landing difference-makers". These are some of the Fleck recruits who have already been "difference-makers" for this program. Regardless of what happened in 2020, they each have impacted the program in a very positive way.

And there is no argument to be made about that.
 

GopherGuy8

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The Gophers were in the BCS conversation, ended the season in the top 10, and couldn't really make any inroads in state or dramatically improve their recruiting nationally or regionally.
Both our national and regional standing grew dramatically in my book. Without the 2019 season I don't see the Gophers getting Ortiz, Walley, Schuster, Brockington, Boyd, or Mapakaitolo and probably a few others. So many more highly touted recruits included MN as a finalist for there recruitment. 3 of our 4 four star recruits are regional recruits. So I would say the MN name has grow drastically both nationally and regionally in the last couple years.

As far as locally, I think steps were taken but as wierd as it may sound, improving MN's name nationally is easier than locally. MN has had mostly bad football teams for most of these kids lives so it's gonna take more than 1 year to have a major impact on the local talent.

Overall it's a great recruiting class, much better than the year before and hopefully PJ can keep upping the talent level.
 

BTChamp

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Both our national and regional standing grew dramatically in my book. Without the 2019 season I don't see the Gophers getting Ortiz, Walley, Schuster, Brockington, Boyd, or Mapakaitolo and probably a few others. So many more highly touted recruits included MN as a finalist for there recruitment. 3 of our 4 four star recruits are regional recruits. So I would say the MN name has grow drastically both nationally and regionally in the last couple years.

As far as locally, I think steps were taken but as wierd as it may sound, improving MN's name nationally is easier than locally. MN has had mostly bad football teams for most of these kids lives so it's gonna take more than 1 year to have a major impact on the local talent.

Overall it's a great recruiting class, much better than the year before and hopefully PJ can keep upping the talent level.
This is it. It takes time and the average rating has increased over the last 5+ years. It just takes time and it is happening. I wish it was overnight, but I have to have patience and trust the process.
 

60's Guy

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There is no doubt 2021 is a higher rated class. Add the transfers and it’s pretty close to elite. PJ did a great job during a pandemic.
I think the guys who don’t count in the ratings...the transfers....may be the ones to make us a better team next year.
Hopefully, we get some type of spring football and a summer training camp.
Be nice to sneak past the Ohio State in the opener. That would create a stir around the country And impact 2022 recruiting.
 
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BTChamp

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There is doubt 2021 is a higher rated class. Add the transfers and it’s pretty close to elite. PJ did a great job during a pandemic.
I think the guys who don’t count in the ratings...the transfers....may be the ones to make us a better team next year.
Hopefully, we get some type of spring football and a summer training camp.
Be nice to sneak past the Ohio State in the opener. That would create a stir around the country And impact 2022 recruiting.
If they can perform better than michigan and the wiscommunists against OSU, I agree with you that the recruiting will be affected. It gets back to the conundrum of results improve recruiting and recruiting improves results. Maybe conundrum isn't the right word, but it is a big word and makes me sound scholarly.
 

MNVCGUY

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If they can perform better than michigan and the wiscommunists against OSU, I agree with you that the recruiting will be affected. It gets back to the conundrum of results improve recruiting and recruiting improves results. Maybe conundrum isn't the right word, but it is a big word and makes me sound scholarly.
Overall team results and high profile wins certainly help in recruiting but I do think fans put way too much emphasis on the results of a single game having a massive impact one way or another on a recruits decision.

Fleck has greatly improved our standing on the National level in terms of recruiting. We are getting in the door with recruits now who would not have given us the time of day a few years ago. I have no doubt that the success from 2019 helped boost that standing even more but there are so many other layers involved in recruiting that extend well beyond on the field results.
 

hungan1

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Things will change hopefully when the Gophers reach/exceed the consistency level of programs ahead of them. At least I hope when it comes to instate kids choosing to go elsewhere.

The ones that hurt are MN kids going to teams within the Big Ten West.
 

A_Slab_of_Bacon

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Things will change hopefully when the Gophers reach/exceed the consistency level of programs ahead of them. At least I hope when it comes to instate kids choosing to go elsewhere.

The ones that hurt are MN kids going to teams within the Big Ten West.
It's the chicken and the egg.

If we get really good ... we'll be turning them down ...
 

goldenboy

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I'm not really talking about 2020. The guy said PJ "has a problem landing difference-makers". These are some of the Fleck recruits who have already been "difference-makers" for this program. Regardless of what happened in 2020, they each have impacted the program in a very positive way.

And there is no argument to be made about that.
Well, other than the fact that you highlighted a low-rated recruit like Morgan to make your point that PJ has landed highly-rated recruits like Dickerson. “Difference-makers” are about performance. This entire thread is about ratings, which are about potential. You are comparing apples and oranges.
 

tmvander

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We really need a good year. It won't take long to forget about 2019 if we under perform
 

MGGopher

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Both our national and regional standing grew dramatically in my book. Without the 2019 season I don't see the Gophers getting Ortiz, Walley, Schuster, Brockington, Boyd, or Mapakaitolo and probably a few others. So many more highly touted recruits included MN as a finalist for there recruitment. 3 of our 4 four star recruits are regional recruits. So I would say the MN name has grow drastically both nationally and regionally in the last couple years.
This is a good point. It's akin to wins on the field. I can't remember if it was Fleck or Kill who said this about building a program, but essentially you start out by losing big, then you move to losing small, winning small, and eventually winning big. Same with recruiting, it seems.
  • First, you lose big and just take who you can get (mostly MAC offers)
  • Then, you lose small on high-profile recruits. You don't land many (or any), but you get close. And in general, the quality of your classes moves up (more P5 offers)
  • Then, you win small on some bigger recruits. You land a few 4* guys per year and get into the final 3 or 5 schools for a bunch more. Quality of the overall class is much higher with pretty much everyone having multiple P5 offers, including from some helmet schools.
  • Then, you win big. You land many 4* guys and even grab a 5* here and there. You pretty much select your class rather than battling many other schools for who you want. Classes consistently in the top 10 nationally.
 

WriterGoph

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Well, other than the fact that you highlighted a low-rated recruit like Morgan to make your point that PJ has landed highly-rated recruits like Dickerson. “Difference-makers” are about performance. This entire thread is about ratings, which are about potential. You are comparing apples and oranges.
No, I'm not. I know what I am comparing. I am saying I trust PJ's results with HIS RECRUITS who have already proven something on the field - ie. "difference-makers". I'd put more stock into those results and numerous players who turned out to be actual high-impact players as opposed to getting upset about one recruit with high rankings (again, which is all projection at this point).

The original comment was that PJ is having trouble landing "difference-makers", which I think is a ridiculous argument given what we have already seen take place with his recruits since he has been here.

Does that make sense?

Ultimately, difference-makers are difference-makers by results, regardless of whether they were a 2-star or a 5-star recruit. What the coach develops them into and gets out of them on the field is all that matters in the end.
 
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