Louisiana hasn't traditionally been a regular stopping off point for the NC State coaches when they hit the road recruiting. However, they identified and offered several prospects from that state earlier in the spring. One of those was Baton Rouge defensive end Malcolm Roach (6-3, 240 pounds).
One way to describe Roach would be as a recruit that is approachable. He takes in a lot of facts about schools, coaches and football programs. He digests and retains it. When he is asked about a school he has an answer ready. That may be one reason coaches are optimistic when they talk to him and offer him. He listens with interest and does not seem to already have his mind made up.
When NC State offered about a week ago, Roach had come to know a good deal about the Wolfpack already.
“It wasn’t the first time I had talked to them. I talked to them a while back like right after football season. They told me they were coming to see me in the spring so they told me to be patient. They came and saw me in the spring, they saw my size and liked it, and they offered me then.”
Although the offer was only one week ago Roach said he has talked to defensive line coach Ryan Nielsen twice since then. In those conversations Nielsen has said time and time again that the entire staff approved of the offer and that they all believe Roach would be an excellent athlete and producer no matter where they put him on the field.
Sometimes versatility means a player can do multiple things in a position on the field. Here it means coaches might not have any clue where he will play.
“They think I could pretty much be an athlete for them. I could play a lot of positions for them on the field. That’s what they like a lot about me. I’m pretty much hearing athlete from everybody else too. I mean I’m hearing outside linebacker, middle linebacker, defensive end, tight end and just all kinds of stuff. I would probably say I like outside linebacker or d-end.”
Versatility has not been Nielsen’s only talking point.
“The coach tells me about their great graduation rate that they have. He told me about how Russell Wilson used to go there and he was talking about the campus and basically how it’s one of the best schools out there.”
Roach visited Alabama last Sunday even though they have not offered. The month of June looks pretty clear and that could be a time when Roach tries to visit some schools that are just now coming into play. July is a little busier with trips to Arizona, Texas Tech and Texas A&M on the docket.
“I think I’m going to wait until after the fall before I make a decision or anything. We’re taking the process slow.”
Roach plays different positions for Madison Preparatory Academy and a lot of schools seem to have a small preference for him on defense although he has two years of history playing tight end now. His numbers on defense were off the charts last year. Roach sacked the quarterback 20 times and was credited with 132 tackles.
He is rated a three-star prospect and the No. 97 defensive end in the nation by Scout.com.