SMU filled up nearly all the spots in its 18-man class by early June. The staff did a good job hitting on a lot of the guys it really pushed for, but like everyone, there are going to be some misses. SMU was very particular about not going over its numbers, especially when it filled up on defense in June. Even with some big-time names still uncommitted, SMU stuck with the guys it had. Here are five players that SMU either wanted at one point or had committed at one point, but didn't land.
Linebacker Dimitri Moore
I touched on it in the roundtable, but Moore is the kind of stud instant-impact linebacker that I think SMU really could have used in a smaller defensive class. Moore has ability in space against the run and the pass and I think the Vanderbilt signee could have challenged for playing time right away.
Quarterback Charlie Brewer
Let me preface this one by saying that I don’t think SMU will feel any consequences of Brewer’s New Year’s Eve flip to Baylor for a couple years, if they do at all. SMU has three skilled quarterbacks who each have at least two years of eligibility left, so Brewer’s chances of playing immediately were pretty low. Still, it’s tough to miss on a talented quarterback like Brewer who was committed for a while and has a long-standing relationship with Chad Morris and his family. I think he’s better than Austin Upshaw, though Upshaw will have a lot of time to develop while Ben Hicks, Rafe Peavey and D.J. Gillins are still around.
Tight End Cade Brewer
SMU ideally wants to take a tight end in each class, and it identified and offered Brewer long before all the Power Five teams who offered him did. Brewer was a gifted receiver and had the frame to put on some weight to be a better blocker. He’s a little slight, but was still willing to play with a hand in the dirt and block. He flipped from SMU to Texas on Dec. 23, and SMU replaced him with Arizona State grad transfer Raymond Epps. I like a lot of the tight ends SMU is on in 2018 and Epps, Corey Rau, Ryan Becker and Mitch Kaufman have the chance to run with the job, but I think Brewer would have challenged for it right away.
Running Back Trelon Smith
I like what Kayce Medlock brings at running back and this wasn’t an urgent need position, but Smith would have been a huge addition for SMU. He was a priority target before he committed to Arizona State in June and good enough to be a type of back that Chad Morris would have recruited at Clemson. I don’t think SMU missing on him will hurt, but he would have been a great fit for the offense.
Safety Adam Beck
Beck was an early safety offer out of Richmond (Texas) George Ranch, Toby Ndukwe and Mikial Onu’s school. He committed to Houston, then Texas Tech before settling on Minnesota in January. I like what Elijah McQueen can become as a safety, but Beck’s ability to play either safety spot, his experience as a corner and his ability against the run would have made him an immediate factor at safety for SMU. With the other young safeties SMU has, this isn’t one that SMU is going to get crushed for not landing, but he would have done well at SMU and he’s the type of player SMU can (and has) landed.