Gallatin (Tenn.) Station Camp high school has been a popular spot for some of college football’s top programs this spring. Head football coach of the Bison, Shaun Hollinsworth, has been entertaining several coaches, all inquiring about his soon to be senior wide receiver, Josh Malone.
Michigan assistant and linebackers coach, Mark Smith, is the point man in the Wolverine’s recruitment of Malone, visiting Station Camp’s campus yet again in recent weeks.
“He’s been a great guy since the recruiting process started with Josh,” said Hollinsworth. “He’s been a real down to earth guy and I really like him. As far as his relationship with Josh I think they seem to have a good one and they seem very interested in getting him on their campus and becoming a Wolverine.”
Although two of the three scholarships Michigan has allotted to the wide receiver position in the 2014 class are already filled, Hollinsworth says his discussions with coach Smith haven’t centered on a scholarship pinch or sped up timeline at all. But the Wolverines could still be in line for another visit from Malone this summer.
“I think he’s probably, over the next few weeks, is just going to try to finish out this track season, get that behind him,” said Hollinsworth. “I’m sure that he and his family are mapping out the summer. He’s probably going to have a busy summer. But I think, this past weekend he stayed home and has kind of been worn out by it.”
For now, the 6-2, 190 pound wide out is focused on his track season and spring football as he wraps up his junior year.
“He won the MVP in the county meet,” said Hollinsworth. “He ran a 10.5 handheld time at the district meet in the 100. That’s moving pretty good.”
As a sprinter, speed and acceleration is of paramount importance. On the football field, Malone brings so much more to the table than just running away from defenders, according to his coach.
“He’s a great route runner, he has great acceleration out of his breaks,” he said. “I’ve talked with several coaches. He’s really not a slashing type guy. To me, he’s a big physical target out there that has the ability to stretch the field and get vertical, which the teams that I’ve talked to, they like about him.
“The fact that he can stretch the field and get vertical and do those kinds of things -- he’d primarily play outside.”
Hollinsworth added that a decision from Malone could come as early as this summer but that he wouldn’t be opposed if the recruitment stretches into the fall. Either way, Hollinsworth feels he has a pretty good grasp of what his star receiver is looking for at the next level.
“If I had to guess I think there’s two things that are probably going to be involved in his decision,” said Hollinsworth. “I think the first thing is being able to play and having a chance to play early, and two, how much they throw the football.”