The spring game ended with several players being recognized on the field in front of their teammates, coaches, fans, and family members. Those recognized for their spring and off season achievements were defensive end Ty Tyler, punter Kaare Vedvik, linebacker Frankie Hernandez, defensive end Gary Thompson, tight end Emanuel Byrd, and special teams standout Cody Carter.
The rain was steady on Saturday as was the offense, but we will get into that later. For now, lets take a look forward and see where the incoming 2016 recruiting class falls into the summer and fall plans.
Three players enrolled on campus early and were able to participate in the spring camp. All three players performed very well, two left spring as starters and one was moving up the depth chart quickly.
Virginia Tech transfer safety CJ Reavis started strong and ended strong. Reavis should start at safety come September 10th against Morgan State.
Chris Jackson may be the biggest surprise of them all. Jackson came in early from FAMU High School out of Tallahassee, he wasn’t highly recruited, rated just two stars by scout.com. The 6’0”, 169 pounder though blasted on to the seen a month ago and simply kept getting better. Expect Jackson to battle Antavis Rowe and Terry Richardson for the starting corner spot by the time the season starts. Right now he has it locked down, just like he did most of the Marshall receivers this spring.
Jeremiah Maddox – Maddox came to Marshall out of Hilton Head Island High School. He worked himself into the safety rotation with Kendall Gant, Reavis, and Corey Neely. Maddox should remain in that mix and not redshirt during the 2016 season.
A look at the rest of the class and where they could fit into the mix come August:
Terry Richardson – Former four star, now grad transfer from the University of Michigan. The speedy defensive back should be able to step in and play immediately, and he better since he will just have one season remaining. Richardson will battle the aforementioned Jackson at the corner spot, but he will also battle Rowe at the nickel position, and see playing time at punt returner.
Tarik Adams- Unless Jordan Dowrey, Nate Devers, Cody Collins and Clint Van Horn cannot overcome injuries, Adams should be able to get on campus, hit the weight room and redshirt his freshman year. However, if there is one lineman that is strong enough, mean enough and good enough to play for offensive line coach Alex Mirabal right from the beginning, it will be Adams.
Sean Behrens – Behrens should redshirt his freshman season. Coach Doc Holliday has always said he would prefer to redshirt all of his incoming offensive lineman and get them a season in the weight room. However, injuries and poor play could change that at any time. Behrens is definitely good enough to come and compete. He was rated three stars by scout.com
Alex Mollette – Another offensive lineman recruited by Coach Mirabal out of the state of Georgia. As was previously mentioned with Behrens, Mollette should redshirt as a freshman and get ready for his second year on campus. The coaching staff has had excellent success in getting redshirt freshman on the field along the offensive line in previous years, most recently being Fedrice Binot.
Brandon Rodgers – It is not known yet if the late flip from Southern Miss will be eligible to play, but things are starting to look like that is a real possibility. If so, Rodgers very well could come in and play at wide receiver right away.
Alex Salguero – Salguero is another offensive lineman in the class of 2016. Salguero is big enough, 6’3, 310 pounds and good enough to potentially factor into the mix right away. He and Adams very well could work their way onto the travel list in the 2016 season.
Will Ulmer – Ulmer is a 6’5”, 285 pound local product from Richmond, Kentucky. Ullmer had several MAC and CUSA offers and chose the Herd.
Deyton Jackson – A late addition to the Class of 2016, a wide receiver. The wide receiver position needs help in numbers this coming season. Jackson, and fellow freshman, Rodgers and Raymond Flanders will battle the returning guys for playing time. Two of the three will most likely not redshirt.
Raymond Flanders – Flanders was another semi late commit/signee out of Florida. Flanders slid under the radar to many, but was always a huge fan of the Herd and wanted to commit to Marshall.
Garet Morrell – Morrell is a three star quarterback from Georgia and the most interesting prospect coming in based on the current quarterback situation. Currently the starter is Chase Litton and the only other scholarship player on the team is Michael Birdsong. Birdsong is rumored to be transferring, which leaves Litton by himself until Morrell comes to campus. The staff will most likely prepare Morrell to play and burn his redshirt. The best case scenario, other than Birdsong staying is for one of the invited walk on quarterbacks to be able to come in and at least stay close to Morrell and be able to play in mop up duty or for one play if a helmet comes off, etc, and allow Morrell to redshirt or be ready to come in and play if needed on and extended basis.
Herdhaven.com take on which offensive players will most likely redshirt/play.
Redshirt – Behrens, Mollette, Salguero, Ulmer, and Jackson
Play – Rodgers, Adams and Flanders
Morrell – I still think they hope to redshirt him if at all possible.
Now a look at the defensive players who signed with the Class of 2016.
Omari Cobb – Cobb could be a big time surprise in this class. What position will he play? At 6’5”, if he stays at safety he could make an immediate impact. But with his body, he is coming in similar in size to what James Rouse was. Many think he could see a redshirt year, a year in the weight room and become a defensive end.
Rodney Croom – Slightyly undersized at defensive end, but after signing day many on the staff were very excited that Croom’s commitment stuck and he signed with the Herd.
Jaylen Sapp – Sapp is a 5’11” defensive back from Florida. He was recruited by defensive coordinator Chuck Heater. He committed to Marshall nearly a year ago and stayed with the Herd throughout. He had offers from Virginia, Wake Forest and Rutgers just to name a few.
Jestin Morrow – Morrow is a former teammate of Maddox at Hilton Head Island High School. Morrow is super explosive and can play both offense and defense. He had a chance to score everytime the ball was in his hands in high school, whether returning a kick or punt, catching a pass, running a reverse or intercepting a pass. It will be very difficult to keep him off the field, but he may redshirt just because the staff may be unsure which side of the ball to play him as both camps will want him.
Cody Mitchell – Mitchell was one of the highest rated recruits in the state of West Virginia last year. The three star player stuck to his commitment and signed with the Herd, now is where the fun begins. Which side of the coaching staff is going to get to enjoy him being in their camp, offense, or defense. Mitchell has the potential to play tight end, running back or linebacker and do any of the three at a high level.
Herdhaven.com Predictions on Defense:
Redshirt – Cobb, Croom, Sapp, Mitchell and Morrow
Play – Richardson who does not have a redshirt year available
Marshall will also welcome five members from the class of 2015 to campus. These were players who were not eligible for the 2015 season but should be ready to go in a couple of weeks.
George Davis – Davis should factor into the mix at defensive back.
Channing Hames – Hames could fit into the mix as the fourth defensive tackle if Malik Thompson continues to battle injuries.
Leron Carn – Carn is a big, fast, strong, determined wide receiver with basketball skills and jumping ability. Carn could see the field early and often.
Charkie Johnson – Johnson was an under the radar talented defensive end that could be an impact player in the future.
Tramell Carey – Carey is a safety/defensive back who is a year removed from the football field but not from the training room.
Every year there seems to be a player that comes out of nowhere and blows these predictions out of the water. Last season there were two, tight end Ryan Yurachek and Antavis Rowe. A few years ago it was lineman Michael Selby. Who will be this years surprise incoming freshman who will not redshirt?
Herdhaven predicts – Raymond Flanders
What are your predictions? Click the link below. Who will redshirt, and who will not, based on what you saw this spring?