Flower Mound (TX) Marcus Practice Notes

FLOWER MOUND, Texas -- Notes and recruiting tidbits from Thursday's practice at Marcus High School, which features several FBS-caliber prospects.

New staff, new approach: Flower Mound (Texas) Marcus has long been a program predicated on a run-heavy, ball-control attack. That changed during the offseason, when Gerry Stanford took over as head coach. Stanford arrives after leading small-school White Oak in East Texas to a state semifinal appearance, the program's first since 1970. Stanford runs an uptempo, balanced spread offense.

Size, size, and more size: The first thing you notice about Marcus when you see them on the field is size. There's Texas A&M commit and four-star offensive tackle Keaton Sutherland (6-5, 270). There's three-star center/guard Creighton Barr (6-3, 279). There's plenty of size in Marcus' 2016 class, too: four-star defensive end Andrew Fitzgerald (6-5, 245), four-star tight end Kaden Smith (6-5, 235), and promising guard Troy Elliott (6-4, 290).

Speaking of Troy Elliott ...: Head coach Gerry Stanford is very high on the big junior guard. Elliott does not have any offers yet, but Stanford fully expects that to change. He believes Elliott is a Power 5 conference-caliber lineman as a guard or center and mentioned Baylor as one school that has been especially interested in Elliott.

Andrew Fitzgerald hearing from a lot of schools: Fitzgerald (pictured at top), who Scout has ranked among the state's top 25 recruits in the 2016 class, also doesn't have an offer yet, but has gotten interest from almost 10 P5 programs. Playing a lot more 7-technique in Marcus' new four-man front should help Fitzgerald impress recruiters even more. He played odd-front 5-tech as a sophomore. Here's a full update with Fitzgerald.

No favorites yet for Kaden Smith: The big-time tight end prospect, who Scout ranks No. 6 overall in the state's 2016 class, has taken a few unofficial visits and has plans for a couple more, but insisted that he has no favorites at this point. Here's a full update with Smith.

Keaton Sutherland ready to roll: Marcus played the 2013 without the four-star Texas A&M commit because of a shoulder injury, which also limited him during spring ball. But he looked ready to go during Thursday's walk-through and, according to the Dallas Morning News, played in Friday morning's scrimmage at state power Dallas Skyline.

Creighton Barr getting recruited by Mean Green commits: Barr has seven total offers. He said Marcus 2015 teammate Cade Erwin, a safety committed to North Texas, is all over him about the Mean Green. The same goes for Converse (Texas) Judson 2015 guard Abdul Beecham, another North Texas commit recruiting Barr for the Mean Green's sake. Here's a full update with Barr, who named a couple of frontrunners Thursday.

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