Rivals national recruiting director Adam Gorney and national recruiting analyst Clint Cosgrove along with Eric Lammers from NittanyNation.com and Jason Higdon of 1standTenFlorida.com tackle three topics and determine whether they believe each statement is FACT or FICTION.
1. Iowa should still feel confident in landing five-star offensive tackle Kadyn Proctor.
Gorney’s take: FACT. If Xavier Nwankpa ended up elsewhere, if he wasn’t an in-state prospect, if Iowa didn’t develop offensive linemen as well as arguably any program in the country, then I could see Kadyn Proctor leaving the state for sure. All the national powerhouses are calling. But all those things above are true and that’s why the Hawkeyes look best in his recruitment as Proctor starts to get even more serious about things. Alabama will be the team to watch. The Crimson Tide like him a lot, it’s hard to say no when coach Nick Saban and his staff make someone a priority and a visit there will be big. But Iowa has to really like its chances right now.
Cosgrove’s take: FACT. You rarely think of Iowa leading the pack for a prospect who is a top target for Alabama, Oregon, Georgia and Notre Dame. But, the circumstances surrounding the nation’s No. 1 OT prospect make this situation a little different. Proctor is from Iowa, the Hawkeyes consistently turn out NFL offensive line talent and his former teammate Xavier Nwankpa, who also happens to be a good friend, is already at Iowa. I see Proctor’s recruitment following a very similar path to that of Nwankpa who also could have gone anywhere in the country, but opted to stay home and play for Iowa in the end.
2. It’s still wise for college coaches to have a “no-visit” policy for committed players.
Gorney’s take: FICTION. I understand this is a complicated topic and deserves a much broader discussion and explanation than a paragraph but I’m going to side with the recruit in this instance. Coaches are paid millions of dollars and go through the recruiting process every single year. For a recruit, oftentimes without a great support system or understanding of the inner workings of the recruiting process, they get to do this once, which means one shot to see all schools, meet all coaches, meet all academic people, experience game-days, etc. To not allow players that opportunity and essentially force them into staying committed to one school seems way over the top. It would lead to players waiting longer to commit and then having both sides scramble at the end when classes have to be put together. I certainly understand why coaches want a no-visit policy after a commitment. I just don’t think it serves the prospect much at all.
Lammers’ take: FACT. Putting my personnel department hat on here, I understand every situation is different, but in general having something like a “no-visit” policy in place once a prospect commits to a program is a no-brainer for me. There has to be some sort of understanding reached between the prospect and the staff that once you commit, you’re locked in, if you want to look around that’s fine but then we will have to look around as well. I completely understand if a young man feels like he committed too early and he wants to visit other programs. No problem with that, but as soon as that happens the staff has to protect itself and recruit others to fill that position. Worse thing that can happen, you have prospect “A” committed to you and he wants to visit other places, you stay true to him and don’t recruit others for his spot. Then a month before National Signing Day prospect “A” informs you that he will be flipping his commitment and you as the program don’t have the same options you would have had a few months ago. Where you could have worked prospect “B” on your board for a commitment, now you are working prospect “E,” and prospect “E” typically gets you fired. No offense to those prospects but that’s reality.
3. Florida has a real chance to land two, if not three, of the top four cornerbacks in the 2023 class.
Gorney’s take: FICTION. I can buy two – AJ Harris and Tony Mitchell – but I’m not sold on Cormani McClain yet. Florida is the front-runner for Harris after another excellent visit there recently and I’d say the Gators and Georgia are tied at the top for Mitchell with Texas A&M right there as well. Florida has a great chance to land both of those prospects from the state of Alabama. But McClain is going to be very tough to pull from Alabama and Ohio State is probably running second. The Gators will be in it because McClain is a local kid but I’d be surprised if it happened.
Higdon’s take: FACT. Recruiting is about relationships and 52-year-old Corey Raymond has them. Raymond is the assistant head coach/cornerbacks coach from New Iberia, La., and is not only the top CB coach in America but the top recruiting coach at his position. The reason Florida is the clubhouse leader for Cormani McClain, AJ Harris and Tony Mitchell is simple – coach Corey Raymond.