National Outlook

Five-star quarterback Blake Bell had planned an extensive tour of college campuses for this spring. But after visiting Norman, Okla. during the first weekend of April, Bell committed to the Oklahoma Sooners, ending any future travel plans.

The 6-foot-6, 215-pound Wichita native is ranked as the No. 2 quarterback and No. 16 overall prospect by Scout.com. He is rated that high despite playing only one season at the quarterback position. Bell was a wide receiver before throwing for 3,200 yards and 38 touchdowns as a junior at Bishop Carroll Catholic High School. Bell had previously visited Texas A&M and planned on making trips to Notre Dame, Kansas, Georgia, Tennessee, and Missouri.

USC recently picked up their third commitment of the season. Like their previous two commits, D.J. Morgan and Dillon Baxter, tight end Randall Telfer holds a four-star rating from Scout.com. The 6-foot-4, 217-pound Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. product caught 42 balls for 678 yards and five scores in the fall of 2008. That earned him all-league honors and led Scout.com to place him as this year's No. 4 tight end. He picked USC over Oregon and UCLA.

Former USC assistant coach Steve Sarkisian is now trying to close the talent gap with the Trojans as the head coach at Washington. He will be aided in the future by two talented prospects that recently made commitments to his program. Jamal Kearse is a four-star athlete from Lakewood, Wash. whose brother, Jermaine, is a sophomore wide receiver for the Huskies. The 6-foot-2, 200-pounder most likely will wind up at receiver, as well, though it is possible that he could be a safety. Kearse chose Washington over Vanderbilt and Washington State.

6-foot-6, 285-pound offensive tackle Ben Riva of Seattle has decided to remain close to home and attend Washington. Riva committed after watching a Husky spring practice earlier this week. Riva had several visits set up but has since cancelled those trips and is firmly in the Washington camp. He had an offer from Washington State and had planned on looking at Northwestern, Michigan, Oregon, and UCLA.

North Carolina State went to the home of their arch rival to land two prospects, one of which may be the biggest recruit of the Tom O'Brien era. Robert Crisp hails from Chapel Hill, N.C. and is the nation's No. 5 offensive tackle prospect according to Scout.com. Crisp stands 6-foot-8, giving him plenty of room to add to his 290-pounds. Crisp is a good athlete as evidenced by the fact that he is a stand out on the basketball court, as well. Scout.com's No. 36 overall recruit had dozens of scholarship offers including ones from Clemson, Georgia, Michigan, and the hometown Tar Heels.

One of the main reasons for Crisp's commitment to the Wolfpack was their offer to his teammate and best friend, Pete Singer. Singer, a 5-foot-11, 175-pound safety, decided to accept at the same time as Crisp. But make no mistake, Singer is not just riding Crisp‘s coattails. He is a fine player in his own right. In 2008, he totaled 77 tackles and had three interceptions. South Carolina, Georgia, and Duke were watching him closely, though they had not extended scholarship offers.

Denzel McCoy ended his recruitment recently, committing to the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets. Georgia Tech won the battle for his services in large part due to the proximity of the Atlanta campus to his Duluth, Ga. home. The 6-foot-4, 274-pounder is a tremendous athlete with a non-stop motor. He had over 30 offers from programs across the country. Some of the schools that he was seriously considering were Notre Dame, Florida State, Auburn, and North Carolina.

Florida picked up their ninth commitment for 2010 in the person of Gideon Ajagbe of Coconut Grove, Fla. The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Ajagbe has played safety at Ransom Everglades School. The Gators have a different plan for him, however. He will learn to play linebacker for Florida, after he adds 20-30 pounds. Along with making 57 tackles last fall, he also racked up 1,354 rushing yards and scored 12 touchdowns. While he is ranked as the No. 81 player in the state of Florida by Scout.com, he sports an impressive offer list that includes Florida State, Oklahoma, and North Carolina.

The two major programs in the state of Alabama took in six commitments during the first week of April. The Crimson Tide got four them, two offensive players and two defenders. Safety Nick Perry of Prattville, Ala. opened the month by selecting Alabama over Auburn, LSU, Vanderbilt, and Stanford. Another safety, Blake Sims of Gainesville, Ga., came next, turning down Georgia, West Virginia, Michigan, and Tennessee by committing to the Tide. Chad Lindsay, an offensive guard from The Woodlands, Texas, had a top two of Alabama and LSU to go with offers from Oklahoma, Tennessee, Georgia, Auburn, and many others. And Macon, Ga. wide receiver Ronald Carswell went with Alabama instead of East Carolina.

Auburn pulled kept pace by pulling in Shaun Kitchens of College Park, Ga. and Jake Holland of Pelham, Ala. The 6-foot-3, 205-pound Kitchens could play a number of positions, though the Tigers recruited him as a wide receiver. Kitchens told Scout.com on April 1st that Clemson, North Carolina, and Tennessee were his leaders, but committed to Auburn three days later after a visit to the campus. Holland is a 6-foot-1, 228-pound, prototypical middle linebacker. He made 129 tackles in 11 games last fall and picked Auburn over Colorado, Vanderbilt, Ole Miss, and UCLA.


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