Minnesota Golden Gopher Football head coach PJ Fleck signs 24 to the 2019 class.
I don’t know about you, but I’m still riding that high of the blowout of the Badgers over a month ago! Since then, Minnesota head coach PJ Fleck and his staff have nearly finished off their 2019 recruiting class by signing 24 future Golden Gophers. After finishing 27th in the country with their recruiting class last year (2nd best in Minnesota history), they mustered up enough talent to once again have a top-35 class. This class is heavy on the defense, but if you watched this past season, that is a good thing.
Without further ado, let’s get into the awards!
Offensive MVP: Jacob Clark, QB – Rockwell, TX
I didn’t see this as much of a question. Jacob Clark is an absolute diamond that I was surprised didn’t get more attention late in the recruiting cycle. The 4* Texan turned down offers from TCU, Washington State, Cal, and Iowa among others, to row the boat. Clark passed for 3,295 yards, with a 64.8% completion percentage, along with a touchdown to interception ratio of 31:7. Woah. The kid can sling it. Rumors are Clark could contend to start behind center as the opening day QB. That’ll be a topic that will keep the diehards busy throughout the entire offseason.
Defensive MVP: Tyler Nubin, DB – Saint Charles, IL
I counted about three others that contended for this honor and they had a strong case for the spot, but I went with the freaky athletic defensive back in Tyler Nubin. Being able to pair Nubin with Terrell Smith for the next three years should bring goosebumps up and down your arms. That duo should lock down the cornerback position for the next few seasons. Nubin could very well even play some safety depending on how coaches feel that position works out come spring ball. No matter the position, I fully expect Nubin to contribute right away on the defensive side of the ball, as well as on special teams. The Illinois native is a phenomenal athlete as he was also a key contributor to his high school team on the offensive side. Nubin will be a name to watch for come spring ball.
Offensive Impact Player: Nnamdi Adim-Madumere, WR – Fort Worth, TX
I could’ve easily went with Jacob Clark again with this, but I think Nnamdi Adim-Madumere could force himself onto the field this fall. I know you’re thinking, “how is he going to pass Chris Autman-Bell?” But the Texas native certainly has the skills to do so. I think you could see Adim-Madumere in four wide sets as he can out muscle any smaller DB on the outside, or work on linebackers with his speed. He is also a tremendous blocker for a receiver. I’m not saying he’s going to have a breakout year like Rashod Bateman did this past year, but those two could pair together for the best WR duo Minnesota has had in a long, long time.
Defensive Impact Player: Keonte Schad, DT – Madison WI/Ellsworth CC
Keonte Schad committed back to the Gophers earlier this fall, and they had to hang on for dear life as other programs such as Oklahoma, UCF, Georgia, and Virginia Tech came in hot after the Madison, Wisconsin native. Schad is considered by some as a 4* talent, and that will be needed as they look to improve their defensive attack vs. the run. Against the run last season in Big Ten play, the Gopher defense allowed 5.8 yards per carry. That won’t cut it. Standing at 6’3 and 275 lbs, Schad will added some much needed beef to a defensive line that struggled last year. Book it now. PJ Fleck snagged an absolute gem out of the JUCO landscape in Keonte Schad.
Offensive Highest Potential: Cameron Wiley, Athlete – Las Vegas, NV
Cameron Wiley runs like a water bug caught on fire. I expect him to play running back here or he could serve as a Percy Harvin or Cordarrelle Patterson role where he runs routes out wide or gets the hand-off behind center. He reminds me a little bit of TJ Yeldon from Alabama just a handful of years ago. He seems to run a little straight up, but a redshirt year will allow the playmaker to become more accustomed to the system as the tailback position. A year of a nutritionist and a college weight room won’t hurt either.
Defensive Highest Potential: James Gordon IV, LB – Plant City, FL
James Gordon chose the Gophers over “THE U” during his Signing Day ceremony on Wednesday. Gordon is a playmaker who has the athletic ability to play sideline to sideline, and deliver a blow while doing so. I can see him being a player similar to Blake Cashman down the road, as the motor that helps the Gopher defense run. If you haven’t already, go check out his Hudl, you will not be disappointed. His high energy and sideline to sideline capabilities are highlighted constantly throughout the film.
Offensive Top Highlight Film: Jason Williamson, Athlete – Owatonna, MN
Williamson committed the day after the 2017 Early Signing Day in which him and fellow Minnesotan, Cole Kramer, committed seemingly at the same moment. Williamson finished his prep career as a two-time Minnesota State Gatorade Player of the Year. His rushing stats put my Madden numbers to shame as he ran for 1400 yards in EIGHT games on 159 carries. That equates to 8.8 yards per carry. My gosh. With 20 touchdowns on the season, and numbers like that, it’s no wonder why he won such awards. Williamson’s highlight tape looks like he is playing not only against the JV, but the C-team! If you haven’t checked out Minnesota’s Mr. Football this year, go take a peek at the film. Wowzers.
Defensive Top Highlight Film: Donald Willis, LB – Cleveland, OH
While Williamson’s highlight film was unbelievable, I am going to say that Donald Willis’ Hudl was the most entertaining high school highlight film by a Gopher commit I have ever seen. My jaw legit dropped when I watched it. He looks like Ray Lewis in the early 2000’s the way he laid the lumber. There were a few times I seriously wondered how the offensive player got up after the hit. Half of the time, they laid down after the hit like they were just clobbered by a midsize sedan! If he makes half of those hits in the Big Ten, he will leave Minnesota absolutely as a fan favorite.
Offensive Dark Horse: Cole Kramer, QB – Eden Prairie, MN
Kramer is an instate QB out of Eden Prairie, which most of us know has produced some of the best football talent this state has to offer. It is also worth mentioning that he has a cousin on the current Gopher team, someone by the name of Carter Coughlin? Ever heard of him? Coughlin only lead the Big Ten in sacks this past season and has been the core of the defense over the past two years. If hard work runs in the family, Kramer could quickly turn into a solid option for coach Fleck to put behind center. Since Fleck took over, he has grilled it into the program and players that “the ball is the program.” Well, how is that stat for you, Cole Kramer has never threw an interception in his high school career. Ever. If Jacob Clark, Tanner Morgan, and Zack Annexstad have troubles with the turnovers, Kramer might find his time in the limelight quicker than anticipated.
Defensive Dark Horse: DeAngelo Carter, DT – Leesburg, GA
With measurables at 6’2 and 305 lbs, Carter has the ability to play snaps the moment he steps on campus. I think with the proper coaching from defensive rush specialist, Maurice West, Carter could leapfrog over some higher rated players on the depth chart. His size is something you can’t teach and a skill that can’t be built overnight. With his ability to play from the first snap in game one against South Dakota State next fall, he could be someone that is looked back at as an absolute steal in four years.
Offensive Best Walk-On: Logan Gaetz, QB – River Falls, WI
Fleck was actively recruiting Logan Gaetz against North Dakota State and was able to get the 6’4 senior to stay closer to home and pay his way here. Any player that NDSU has offered is usually a quality product, and certainly deserving of a walk-on spot at Minnesota.. I don’t need to tell you that NDSU has been an absolute power in FCS college football for the past 15 years. They have produced probably more NFL talent than the maroon and gold have in the past decade or so. Getting quality players to walk-on has been a key part of Fleck’s proclaimed strategy, and I think they got a good one in Gaetz.
Defensive Best Walk-On: Austin Winfield, DB – Woodlands, TX
We got em’! Yes, another Winfield is on campus and so far, that strategy has worked out in the Gophers favor. The Winfield genes have been kind so far with Antoine Jr, but with a listed height of 5’5, the odds are once against this family. Does height concern me, it’s certainly not ideal, but I’m over doubting the Winfield family and I can’t wait to see him out on the field. Currently he is listed at safety, but I’m curious to see if they move him to slot corner as he gets older. I’m going to make a bold call right now that Winfield will force coach Fleck to put him on scholarship, similar to how Blake Cashman did early during his career (and yes, the scholarship awarding will become a viral video and it will involve Antoine senior and Antoine Jr.).
I hope you enjoyed hearing more about this ELITE recruiting class. Stay tuned with just a few scholarships remaining for the 2019 class, Fleck and his staff will be sure to look to add more talent to a class that already shows promise. Click on the attached document to see all the Golden Gophers who signed their LOI on Wednesday. Stay tuned for the next two months because I guarantee you, it will be fun.
|Player Name||Stars||Position||Hometown||Other Notable Offers||Early Enrollee||Latest Hudl Film|
|Rashad Cheney||4*||DT||Ellenwood, GA||Georgia, Alabama, Penn State, LSU||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/6596460/59dd83b5f326f52a38005622|
|Tyler Nubin||4*||DB||Saint Charles, IL||Michigan, Michigan State, Tennessee||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/5394381/5b8afaf16899a306188d5345|
|Jacob Clark||4*||QB||Rockwell, TX||TCU, Washington State, Iowa, Cal||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/7448372/5bfb3c635b478907901e41ce|
|Keonte Schad||3*||DT||Madison, WI/Ellsworth CC||Oklahoma, Georgia, UCF, Virginia Tech||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/9528805/5bd783901763be0e9498b479|
|Nnamdi Adim – Madumere||3*||WR||Fort Worth, TX||Alabama, Baylor, Texas, A&M, UCF||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/6416678/5a120d9cda522d0e08ef3aa9|
|JJ Guedet||3*||OT||Washington, IL||Oklahoma, Nebraska, West Virginia, Iowa||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/6798718/5bef973b4bb3190cc81a7de1|
|James Gordon IV||3*||LB||Plant City, FL||Miami, Florida State, Mizzou, UNC||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/5409465/5a0760ff5ca91f11c4b19c19|
|Donald Willis||3*||LB||Cleveland, OH||West Virginia, Purdue, Cincinnati, Ohio||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/7551823/5c0549b290f8cf0cd0aa52a6|
|D’Vion Harris||3*||DE||St. Louis, MO||Arizona, Florida, Michigan, Kentucky||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/6052485/5b98108f7bd2e31544353a23|
|MJ Anderson||3*||DE||St. Louis, MO||Arkansas, Nebraska, Kentucky, TCU||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/5583574/5b8e7abcb018bb08482cc6a3|
|Kelvin Clemmons||3*||CB||Tampa, FL/Hutchinson CC||Kentucky, USF, Toledo||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/9083515/5bd11d9fdfe2f60d8ceb466b|
|Jason Williamson||3*||Athlete||Owatonna, MN||No other offers listed||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/5508771/5bfc86d1b53ecb0cec3f4ea7|
|Treyson Potts||3*||RB||Williamsport, PA||UCONN, Virginia, Princeton||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/6066216/5ba671434decbb08b4c67889|
|DeAngelo Carter||3*||DT||Leesburg, GA||Arkansas, Kentucky, UNC, South Carolina||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/5438323/59d3c3ed8cd45e2824419433|
|Mike Stephens-Brown||3*||WR||Springfield, OH||Kentucky, Ball State, Bowling Green||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/8878257/5b8e88733448df0c98e95ac4|
|Solomon Brown||3*||CB||Largo, FL||Iowa, Indiana, UCF, Colorado State||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/3340508/5a09164032dc210cc032f1d6|
|Logan Richter||3*||DT/G||Perham, MN||No other offers listed||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/4684217/58561f583deaaa21d4f09449|
|Cameron Wiley||3*||Athlete||Las Vegas, NV||Arizona, Duke, Oregon, TCU, Utah||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/10646845/5b96cc2e02bc5a08b8d0f81a|
|Cole Kramer||3*||QB||Eden Prairie, MN||No other offers listed||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/5655002/5c09e9cc9a90fb0b2043fd37|
|Peter Udoibok||3*||WR||St. Paul, MN||Air Force, NDSU, Rice, Northern Iowa||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/7660080/5be0754896764a0c1cca5961|
|Tyler Cook||3*||OT||St. Croix Falls, WI||Eastern Michigan, UND, NDSU, New Mexico||X||https://www.hudl.com/video/3/5535488/59be8ea202b19603e07a567c|
|Michael Lantz||3*||K||Fayettville, GA||Washington State and Louisiana – Monroe||X||https://ww.hudl.com/video/3/7145598/5beb95a08cdeea15b00b28d9|
|Brady Weeks||2*||LS||O’Fallon, MO||No other offers listed||X||https://ww.hudl.com/video/3/8483017/59fa6d72041ddc070850e074|