Fresno State Commitment Impact: Malik Forrester

BarkBoard breaks down the impact that Malik Forrester's commitment makes on the Fresno State Bulldogs' 2016 recruiting class.

Committed Over: Colorado State, Hawaii, Idaho, South Alabama, Texas State, UTSA, Albany (NY), Northern Arizona, Youngstown State

On Film: Forrester proves to be a load in the middle at LA Pierce. In multiple fonts, his size and athleticism allow him to make an impact whether he’s lined up at the nose guard in a 3-4 or at the tackle in a 4-3. Forrester weighs in a 6-foot-2 and 305 pounds - he’s athletic at his frame, though it’s also a frame that Fresno State's strength and conditioning coach Joey Boese can make more efficient. For a lineman with such a large center of gravity, he has very active arms and quick feet to propel himself past offensive linemen.

Forrester shows the size and ability to immediately play at the nose for Fresno State, or possibly even a defensive end role similar to Andy Jennings in 2013.

Recruiting Impact: Fresno State’s defensive line in 2015 wasn’t exactly stellar and losing two of the three starters on that three-man front will put the Bulldogs in an even tougher situation in 2016. Fortunately for the ‘Dogs, they landed Forrester at the mid-year signing period. Fresno State signed two junior college defensive linemen, but the other, Austin Vaimili, will be delayed to joining the team in the fall - making the addition of Forrester that much more important.

Forrester had double digit scholarship offers, but his decision ultimately came down to Fresno State and Colorado State.

“It was okay, it just didn’t feel like home,” Forrester said of Colorado State. “I didn’t get that warm, fuzzy feeling. At Fresno State, I feel needed more than wanted. I feel like I can do better at Fresno. I feel like the three-man front is what gets you to the next level.”

As far as ratings go, Forrester was only a two-star recruit, but most junior college recruits at the group of five level fall under this category. Asking around, Forrester is seen to have a big upside at the nose and possibly the most promising prospect of the Bulldogs’ 2016 JC haul.

Coach Pete Germano was Forrester’s lead recruiter. Germano can usually be attributed for playing a role in recruiting both defensive lineman and Central Valley athletes. Credit is due to Germano from landing Forrester and keeping Colorado State from adding to an impressive class that includes three, three-star defensive linemen.

Looking ahead, this addition looks to give the 'Dogs more flexability on their defensive line. Fresno State’s staff was adamant all season long that Nate Madsen would be the team’s noseguard, at least for last season. DeRuyter was singing a different tune on signing day, stating that the addition of Forrester could allow Madsen to move back to defensive end. With a thin defensive line, pairing Forrester and Madsen on the field at the same time would make the ‘Dogs one lineman short of a formidable line with Kyle Hendrickson, Nick Kristofers and Patrick Belony fighting to get in the mix.

Quotable: “I’m strong, I can control the middle, I can control the guy on me,” Forrester said “I have a great motor. I can defeat the double team too because I’m aggressive.”

Final Thought: Fresno State was in desperate need of junior college linemen on both sides of the ball, but this pickup feels more like a steal than a move to plug a hole. Since the offensive line isn't a flashy position, Forrester could make the biggest splash of the five junior college newcomers in spring football, which begins on Feb. 29.


BarkBoard Top Stories