Commitment Impact: OL Tariq Cole

Rutgers secured a commitment from Lido Beach (N.Y.) Long Beach offensive lineman Tariq Cole, and Scout.com takes an in-depth look at his film, and how he fits into the 2014 class.

Committed Over: Tariq Cole selected Rutgers over an offer from Temple.

Rated: Cole is not rated at this point, but he projects to a three-star offensive guard in the 2014 class by Scout.com.

On Film: At 6-foot-6, 375 pounds, Cole's size jumps out, in a positive way, and an intriguing way. He is huge, and he also is agile, especially for such a big kid. And if he dropped 40 pounds, how much more athletic, agile and light on his feet would he be?

His junior tape (below) is good, but his senior tape is much better (Scout.com is working on getting a copy to upload). He bends his knees well, which enables him to win the leverage battle, and he is powerful. He's not just big, he's strong and can dominate with his strength. He also has long arms and a very good initial punch.

He plays left tackle for Lido Beach (N.Y.) Long Beach and he has the ability and the athleticism to lead the way as a pulling tackle, and could be more devastating doing so as a guard in the Big Ten. In pass protection, he has the quickness to get back in pass protection.

The end zone views of the highlights are the best way to see his ability, and at the 1:30 mark of the highlights his ability to pull and locate the linebacker to make the block. On the next play, he pulls again and is able to locate a much smaller player, zero in on the target and make an impactful block.

At the 2:40 mark, Cole does a nice job of blocking down and also finishing the play by driving the defensive player back 10 yards.

Finally, at the 3:08 mark, it takes him about one second to finish off a block, and he does so with incredible explosion and a devastating first punch.

In addition to Cole's size, though, another concern is the competition. Cole will not face any BCS-level defensive ends during the season, so his adjustment to the speed and size of his opponents in college will take some time.

Recruiting Impact: There really isn't a big impact into how the rest of the class shakes out. The Scarlet Knights took Cole, who is projected as a guard, after Marquise Wright decided to transfer from the program. Cole is the second guard in the class, but will not impact the remaining uncommitted offensive line on Rutgers' board.

Weeki Wachee (Fla.) High offensive tackle Marcus Applefield, who will officially visit the weekend of Dec. 7, remains as a high-priority target, and is the only "hot" offensive tackle on Rutgers' board.

Potomac (Md.) The Bullis School offensive lineman Justin Herron projects as a guard and commits Jacquis Webb of Rochester (N.Y.) Gates-Chili and Zack Heeman of Flanders (N.J.) Mt. Olive are heading to Rutgers to play offensive tackle.

Quotable: "Coach (Kyle Flood) called me up and said he really wanted me, and I thought that was the perfect school for me. He made me feel like I was one of the best players," Cole said.

Final Thought: The immediate reaction by many could be that Cole chose Rutgers over Temple, so how good can he be? To me, that is flawed thinking. Temple and Rutgers knew about Cole because of relationships both coaching staffs have on Long Island.

Rutgers coach Kyle Flood recruited Long Island for years and has long known about the player, and after seeing senior film moved quickly to secure a commitment.

Cole has talent, so don't be fooled by the offers. He bends well and is explosive. The biggest concern is his weight. Once he gets into the strength and conditioning program at Rutgers, he will shed pounds, but he may always be a player who has access weight. Whether he can handle the college grind at that size is a question, but his natural talent and his ability to play to the whistle make him an intriguing prospect.

There are plenty of offensive lineman out there who fit into the cookie-cutter physique of a 290 pounder, but one thing Flood has shown is a willingness to allow a player to play if he is effective, even if he doesn't look like an Adonis.


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