Your move, Eastern Michigan.
Burnsville athlete prospect Kamal Martin committed to Minnesota today, joining seven other local prospects as members of the "Empire" class for 2016. Martin is rated as a 3 star prospect according to the 247 Industry Composite, flipping from Eastern Michigan where he was committed as a quarterback. He is the 13th prospect committed for the 2016 class and first projected tight end.
Martin on his level of excitement after receiving the hometown offer after camp, to Gopher247's Kyle Goblirsch ($):
"It's hard to even think right now I'm so excited. I don't know I could even respond to plans now, I need to let this settle in."
Why he decided to commit now:
"I just needed a couple days to think about it, but I believe Minnesota is the place where I need to be to be successful!"
(Likely Fraudulent) Measurables**
** The section title is a bit. It's an intentionally facetious comment on how recruiting sites (and even some college coaches) notoriously exaggerate traditional combine measures -- especially the 40. No offense is meant.
Weight: 203-211 lbs.
Fake 40 Time: 4.82s electronic
Big 4 Ratings:
Junior year via HUDL:
Martin followed a path forged by current Gopher and Maxx Williams replacement at tight end, Duke Anyanwu. The former Blaine quarterback impressed the coaching staff with his athleticism at one of their first summer camps, eventually landing an offer his senior year. Like Anyanwu, Martin is a high school quarterback with an excellent, athletic frame that could project at a number of different spots.
More from the Empire Class
More from the Empire Class
Some clarity on Martin's collegiate position would go a long way towards establishing a proper scheme fit, but we'll run through the options. Kamal's frame and athleticism align more with the H-back spot in Matt Limegrover's offense opposed to an inline, Y tight end. Players like Drew Goodger and Lincoln Plsek are the latter, leaving the more versatile athletic threats like Williams, Anyanwu or Jerry Gibson the task of attacking the defense in a variety of ways. Martin has the potential to bulk up into the 240-245 lbs. range while running in the 4.6-4.7 range, the type of speed and size mismatch on linebackers/safeties you need to exploit quick releases up the seem or crosses.
Coach Sherels reportedly pulled Martin aside for individual work long after the camp session concluded, fueling speculation linebacker could be Kamal's college position. Without a key on his instincts and how he looked in his drops, I'd think he could find a home at either Sam or Mike LB. The defensive coaches have a fondness for length at outside linebacker to help block passing lanes, and Martin could have just enough athleticism to hang with slot WRs and tight ends at Sam.
Impact on Other Prospects?
Martin adds to the "Empire" roster of in-state recruits committed to Minnesota, with J.D. Spielman and possibly Drew Hmielewski as the remaining targets to join them. Kamal is one of potentially two tight ends in the class; Albert Okwuegbunam from Sacred Heart Griffin (IL) is the other TE prospect most likely to join, though Michigan State is expected to put up quite a fight.