Billy: Robert Mahone
The Prosper running back stayed firm in his commitment to Boise State after being close to committing to SMU at one point. He's the bigger back SMU coveted in this class and would have been a great addition. He's a physical runner that would have brought an edge to SMU's running attack. For some reason, someone got in his ear and changed his plans from committing to SMU, but it was a tough miss for the staff.
Scott: Clifton Lewis
I understand the staff honoring scholarships when they offer a player and he commits, but I still think Clifton Lewis a better linebacker than some of the guys set to sign with SMU. I also understand them take JT Williams over Lewis because the JUCO defensive tackle offers immediate help on the defensive front, but I don’t understand why they didn’t find a way to fit Lewis into the class. Lewis’ quickness, aggression, tackling ability and size are all hard things to find when looking for linebackers.
I never saw David Moore as a game-changer, and I like the 2017 targets’ potential more than I do Moore’s. But he put SMU in a tough spot, deciding to visit Memphis just a few days before signing day. Moore’s recruitment was stressful for the staff; and I think the coaches wish just a little bit that the two sides had agreed to part ways earlier in the cycle, although Moore’s inability to be straightforward with the staff didn’t help. Anyway, I always think teams should sign a quarterback every year, and this turned out to be the worst-case scenario. The played considered the long-time backup plan, Brennan Wooten, enrolled early at TCU. The good news is that the coaches aren’t too worried, given SMU’s status at the position this year and the talent of their 2017 targets.
Hatts: Clifton Lewis
With all the problems SMU had at linebacker last season, surely there had to be a spot in the class for a player of Lewis’s caliber. The former TCU commit has good size and speed that would have allowed him to make an impact early on for SMU, something they need badly at the linebacker position. Lewis easily would have been one of the most talented players entering in this class just based on the type of performances he put up his senior season. That’s a guy you make space for if you have to.
Demo: Clifton Lewis
Clifton Lewis. This kid can diagnose a play lightning fast and has the motor to get there. Explosive, intelligent, athletic—he has it all. Would have easily an early contributor and an improvement to last year’s line backing corp.