In the end, Mitch Mustain decided that he was right the first time. The Springdale, Ark. star has decided that he wants to stay home, as he re-committed to the Arkansas Razorbacks on Monday night. Mustain's commitment ends weeks of internet speculation on which school he would ultimately choose.
After committing to Arkansas in August, the No. 1-ranked quarterback on Scout.com re-opened his recruiting in December after the firing of quarterbacks coach Roy Wittke, who was Mustain's primary recruiter leading up to his initial commitment. After meeting with the entire Razorback coaching staff last Friday, Mustain decided that it was time to end his recruitment for good.
One thing that is certain is that Mustain will have an understanding of the Razorback offense. His former high school coach, Gus Malzahn, was named as the new offensive coordinator at Arkansas around the time Mustain de-committed in December. He will also have two of his favorite targets from high school joining him in Fayetteville in wide receiver Andrew Norman and tight end Ben Cleveland, the latter of which recently de-committed from Florida to join the Hogs.
Mustain chose the Razorbacks over Tennessee, Alabama, and, depending on whose story you believe, Notre Dame. Losing Mustain would have been bad enough, but losing him to a conference rival like Tennessee or Alabama would have made Arkansas coach Houston Nutt's hot seat that much warmer. But Mustain's pledge gives Nutt some nice momentum as signing day approaches.
That momentum continued on Tuesday as Nutt received a commitment from Carlton Salters, a wide receiver from Tallahassee North Christian. Salters is ranked as a three-star player on Scout.com and chose Arkansas over Maryland and Wake Forest.
After their bonanza at the Army All American Bowl, the USC Trojans received another commitment this past week from running back Stanley Havili from Salt Lake City (Utah) Cottonwood. Havili is rated as a four-star prospect and is the No. 15-ranked running back on Scout.com. Havili is a big, punishing back with good speed. He will attempt to slide into the spot that was vacated when LenDale White made himself eligible for the NFL Draft.
Havili becomes the second running back commitment for the Trojans after Emmanuel Moody chose USC at the Army All American Bowl. But USC is far from done at this position. With Reggie Bush and White going to the NFL, Desmond Reed's injured knee, and the always fragile academic standing of Chauncey Washington, there is a huge need at running back for Southern California. The Trojans are still involved with several highly regarded running back prospects including Stafon Johnson, C.J. Spiller, LeSean McCoy, Michael Goodson, C.J. Gable, and Keiland Williams. It would not be a surprise if Pete Carroll brings in one or two more top flight ball carriers.
Another school that continued on a recruiting roll after success at the Army All American game was Penn State. Last Friday the Nittany Lions received word that Andrew Quarless of Uniondale, N.Y. would be joining their program in the fall. The 6-4, 225-pound Quarless is ranked as the No. 9 tight end on Scout.com and chose Penn State over Michigan. Quarless is a good enough athlete to play defensive end as well as tight end, but Paterno and staff are planning to keep him on offense.
The Lions also received a commitment from four-star offensive line prospect J.B. Walton from Lackey High School in Indian Head, Md.. At 6-3, 270 pounds, Walton will have to add some weight to play at the next level. He plays tackle at Lackey, but his size and quickness may mean a shift inside at Penn State. Walton chose the Lions over Nebraska. He becomes the fifth player from Maryland to choose Penn State this recruiting season and they are still involved with five-star Maryland prospect Antonio Logan-El.
But do not weep for the Terrapins, as they had a good week securing three commitments. The biggest name is Hamden, CT. four-star lineman Bruce Campbell. Campbell is probably going to wind up at offensive tackle and he chose Maryland over Virginia. As for Logan-El, Maryland will surely not let him leave the state without a fight.
California received a verbal commitment on Tuesday from James Montgomery, the No. 19 running back on Scout.com. The big news is not necessarily the commitment itself, but that Montgomery had originally chosen to go to Washington. Like Mustain, in the end Montgomery chose to stay close to his Rancho Cordova home. But this was not the end of the bad news for Tyrone Willingham. Later on Tuesday, four-star offensive line commit Cody Pope also changed his mind and decided that he will enroll at Tennessee in the fall. Montgomery and Pope, along with quarterback Jake Locker and defensive tackle Cameron Elisara, were the stars of the current Husky recruiting class, and their defections leave Willingham with some major holes to fill between now and signing day.
Finally, if what you are looking for is quantity, we give you the South Carolina Gamecocks. Last weekend, South Carolina hosted their biggest recruiting weekend of the year and it paid dividends as Steve Spurrier and company landed eight prospects. The best of the bunch may be defensive end Eric Norwood, a former Oklahoma State commit, that chose the Gamecocks over the Cowboys and Auburn.