Following the success of the major Junior Day weekend Stanford hosted that was built around a practice in Stanford Stadium on March 1, the Cardinal are hosting a second Junior Day today and tomorrow. The latest Junior Day follows the same model the football staff employed in March, with the team back in the stadium on Sunday. In addition to having a horde of junior recruits on hand for that practice, the weekend will attempt to replicate the agenda of the early March production, with time set aside for tours of the campus, quality time with the coaches, and other staples of the visit experience.
This Junior Day brings a dozen recruits to The Farm. As with the earlier major recruiting weekend, the visitors list includes a handful of potential recruits who have not yet received Stanford offers as well as a strong group of recruits who loom as prime targets for Stanford. The weekends did differ in some important respects, however. Most notably, the latest weekend predominantly featured recruits from outside of California, in contrast to the mostly Californian cast of characters in March. The weekend's visitors are:
- ATH Courtney Dalcourt – Franklin (Ky.) Franklin Simpson
- RB Patrick Foley – Scottsdale (Ariz.) Notre Dame Preparatory
- RB Damien Thigpen – Manassas (Va.) Stonewall Jackson
- WR Drew Terrell – Chandler (Ariz.) Hamilton
- OL Ben Hughes – Sugar Land (Tex.) Stephen F. Austin
- OL Brian Schwenke – Oceanside (Ca.)
- OL Xavier Su'a Filo – Provo (Utah) Timpview
- TE/DE Brock Sanders – Duluth (Ga.) Northview
- DE Zac Costlow – Steubenville (Ohio) Catholic Central
- DE Craig Roh – Scottsdale (Ariz.) Chaparral
- DT Terrence Stephens – Gaithersburg (Md.) Quince Orchard
- K Dustin Hopkins – Houston (Tex.) Clear Lake
- LB/DE (2010) Chris Martin – Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O'Dowd
Four of the prospects in this group join eight of the prospects from the March Junior Day in the Scout.com Top 300: offensive tackle Xavier Su'a Filo (#136 overall), running back Damien Thigpen (#167 overall), defensive end Craig Roh (#173 overall), and defensive tackle Terrence Stephens (#232 overall).
Aside from this quartet of high-profile recruits, the visitors list is marked by the presence of 11 out-of-state recruits representing eight different states. For the second Junior Day in a row, Stanford hosted at least one recruit from both Georgia and Kentucky, demonstrating the extent to which Stanford is concentrating efforts in those far-away states. With last month's commitments by March visitor Camden Wentz and current April visitor Brock Sanders, Stanford has developed an early and surprising foothold in Georgia in particular.
The visitors list is also notable for the presence of a quartet of prospects who had not received scholarship offers as of the start of the weekend in Costlow, Hopkins, Hughes, and Schwenke. It will be interesting to see how their recruitments proceed in the wake of this weekend's visit. Also, Hopkins joins brothers Michael Loftus and Connor Loftus from the March Junior Day as a kicking specialist Stanford is taking a serious look at. Given the apparent nature of these weekends as events geared toward active Stanford targets, the trio of kickers brought in already signifies the Stanford coaching staff's conscious emphasis on that often-overlooked position. Look for Stanford to bring in a kicker in the 2009 class, potentially as a scholarship player or recruited walk-on.
Like the March Junior Day group, the current cast is disproportionately represented by prospects that project on the offensive side of the ball. Stanford has aggressively extended offers at positions on offense and that level of engagement has translated to the composition of the groups that have come to campus for the two major visit weekends this year. That said, it is defensive line that stands out as the most impressively populated position group for this weekend's attendees. Roh and Stephens may be the two highest priorities for Stanford of anybody on campus this weekend. Sanders is a versatile prospect who could play defensive end in addition to tight end. Costlow does not have an offer but sits high enough on the radar to receive an invitation to the somewhat exclusive Junior Day. In a year in which defensive line recruiting looks to be Stanford's most acute need, the group attending this April visit weekend could contribute a core of prospects for that unit.
Stay tuned to The Bootleg for more on this weekend's slate of visitors.
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