(EAST LANSING, MI) -- If the Spartans want to make some waves in this year's recruiting season, they are going to have to land some big fish.
The first two verbal commitments of the John L. Smith era, 6' 7, 315lb Peter Clifford, a tackle from Bridgton Academy,(ME) and Sean Clayton, 6' 5", 235lb quarterback from Poland (OH) Seminary are nice, but let's face it, both of these players were being lightly recruited.
MSU only had to face down Buffalo for Clifford and a couple of MAC schools to nail Clayton. The Spartans need to add some impact players or they are going to find the Seniors they need to rely on in 2006 and 2007 aren't going to be able to provide the leadership, talent or depth that they will need.
That's why the next two weeks are crucial to Smith's first recruting class. MSU athletic director Ron Mason's comments notwithstanding, Smith can't afford to throw away even one recruting class. Smith came to East Lansing with a top coach's salary, he's going to have to earn it and he knows it.
That's why Smith is beating the bushes in the East, the South, the Midwest and even California searching for any prospects who haven't quite yet found that perfect place for them. Smith is telling them to visit MSU, play Big-10 football in a spread offense and if you're a defensive player, you have a chance to get playing time right away.
It's an intriguing message and indications are that many unsettled recruits are listening to it. Still, MSU needs to land that big fish to jump start its recruting efforts and they'll get the chance over the next two weeks to wow prospects like Saginaw's Lamarr Woodley, the do-it-all defensive end/linebacker; quarterbacks like Los Angeles (CA) Venice Eddie Miller, Mt Carmel (PA) Dave Shinskie, or Louisville (KY) Male Michael Bush three of the top quarterbacks still available.
It takes a big fish to make waves. The Spartans have their hooks in the water this weekend.