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Minnesota Football Recruiting: The Offensive Commits on National Signing Day 2016

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A quick look at every Gopher who could make an impact on the offensive game plan.

Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

10 Players signed in this particular class who project to contribute on the offensive side of the ball. This is good, but I probably would have been happier with another receiver, another TE and another high school offensive lineman.

Our overall scholarship allotment on offense looks like this.

Verb FR rFR SO JR SR

QB

0 2 0 1 0 1
RB 0 0 2 2 1 0
TE 0 1 2 1 3 1
WR 0 3 1 3 2 1
OT 0 1 3 1 1 1
OC 0 0 0 1 0 0
OG 0 1 1 1 3 0

The headliner on offense this year is Seth Green who was once an Oregon commit who decided to come back to Minnesota after spending his senior year in Texas. However as we've see with previous recruiting classes your best players are often the ones you expect the least out of (see 2015 Shannon Brooks).

Lets take a look at the class.

QB - Seth Green

VITALS
Position: QB
Home: Woodbury
Height: 6-4
Weight: 215
40-time: 4.8

Scroll of the Sworn: Committed December 13

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: Oregon, Wisconsin, Michigan St, Iowa,Illinois, others

Videos:

NOTES:

A huge get for the Gophers and Green may be an ideal fit for Jay Johnson's new offense. Yes, his recruiting rankings have dropped off a bit from a year ago but Green very productive for one of the top high school football programs in Teas. Nearly 1,500 yards passing, over 850 yards rushing, 29 total touchdowns and 7 interceptions...all while splitting time with the presumed starter for the team he jumped in to last Spring. That was in the highest class in Texas Football on a team that was the defending state champ and made it to the semi-finals. (this is a very good read on Green from the Star Tribune.)

Green is a great get. He is on campus and ready to compete in Spring Ball for the backup spot behind Leidner. We should be very excited about this.

QB/ATH - DeMarcus Williams

VITALS
Position: QB/S/WR
Home: Jackson, AL
Height: 6-1
Weight: 180
40-time: idk

Scroll of the Sworn: none

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: None. Offers from non G5 schools like Memphis, Tulane, etc.

Videos:

NOTES:

Recruited by Jay Johnson while at Louisiana-Lafayette and Johnson convinced Claeys that we need to go after Williams to be a Gopher. In the end Williams took the chance to be a Big Ten player. He should have the chance to compete at QB but his athleticism may provide him the opportunity to play as a DB or even WR. I'd be shocked to see him on the field this Fall.

RB - Kobe McCrary (JUCO)

VITALS
Position: RB
Home: Chipley, FL
Height: 6-1
Weight: 230
40-time: didn't see it

Scroll of the Sworn: none

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: None. Offers from Colorado St, Southern Miss, and other smaller schools

Videos:

NOTES:

Big back coming in as a junior. McCrary is going to add depth and provide a big-back...essentially replacing Roderick Williams. I will assume that he will see time on the field but his carries will be well behind those of Shannon Brooks and Rodney Smith.

WR - Drew Hmielewski

VITALS
Position: WR
Home: Marshal, MN
Height: 6-2
Weight: 190
40-time: 4.56

Scroll of the Sworn: Committed August 11

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: None. Offers from all the Dakota/Iowa FCS schools.

Videos:

NOTES:

His parents were both D1 athletes at Kansas State with his dad playing minor league baseball. Drew is a multi-sport athlete who may play baseball for the Gophers as well. As a football player he has good size, good speed and the staff is banking on him developing into a good receiver. I'd be surprised to see him on the field this Fall but I do believe he will be a regular contributor.

Best case scenario, Hmielewski is an Eric Decker caliber receiver. (why not?)

ATH/WR - Phillip Howard

VITALS
Position: WR/Ath
Home: New Hope, MN
Height: 5-11
Weight: 175
40-time: 4.5

Scroll of the Sworn: Committed March 31

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: None. Offers from Western Michigan, Wyoming, with interest from several P5 programs

Videos:

NOTES:

Speed is what Howard brings to the Gophers. A high school quarterback who will transition to a slot receiver...sounds like the next KJ Maye. A nice addition, speed is always a valuable commodity and Howard brings it. 2016 contributions? Not likely.

ATH/WR/S - Tyler Johnson

VITALS
Position: WR/S
Home: Minneapolis
Height: 6-3
Weight: 185
40-time: 4.6

Scroll of the Sworn: Committed October 10

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: Wisconsin, Iowa, Iowa St

Videos:

NOTES:

Good size, strong athlete with good speed (more straightline speed than shifty). Johnson could really play on either side of the ball. Safety seemed more likely until the departure of Snelson and receiver being a bigger area of need. Both last year and this saw the Gophers acquire quite a few defensive backs. I would expect Johnson to begin his career on offense. His size, strength and ability to go up and get the ball make him a good prospect offensively.

Look for a redshirt year before battling to get on the field.

TE - Ko Kieft

VITALS
Position: TE
Home: Sioux Center, Iowa
Height: 6-3
Weight: 225
40-time: he ain't fast

Scroll of the Sworn: None

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: None. Offers from all the Dakota FCS schools, previously committed to NDSU.

Videos:

NOTES:

Not a lot of interest from D1 or even P5 schools but the staff went after Kieft when other TE didn't pan out. There are plenty of guys ahead of him on the depth chart so I would expect nothing but a redshirt for Kieft.

OG - Garrison Wright (JUCO)

VITALS
Position: OL
Home: Marysville, KS
Height: 6-5
Weight: 310

Scroll of the Sworn: none

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: TCU, Memphis, other smaller schools

Videos:

NOTES:

Wright is big and strong, not going to be confused with being particularly athletic. But this was a huge area of need, a very nice pick up and very likely will be playing a lot this Fall, if not starting from week 1.

OL - Vincent Calhoun (JUCO)

VITALS
Position: OG
Home: Roswell, GA
Height: 6-4
Weight: 330
40-time: do you really care?

Scroll of the Sworn: Committed June 18

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: Mississippi St, Memphis, Southern Miss, other small schools

Videos:

NOTES:

Calhoun, a 2nd team JUCO All-American is filling a tremendous need along the OL. Likely a starting guard, maybe a tackle.

A huge area of need, a great pick up and will likely be starting at OG this Fall.

OL - Sam Schlueter

VITALS
Position: OG
Home: Mayer, MN
Height: 6-6
Weight: 275
40-time: seriously stop looking here

Scroll of the Sworn: Committed December 4

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: Wisconsin, Michigan St, Northwestern, Iowa St, others

Videos:

NOTES:

Described as lean, great feet and mobile. Schlueter is a great fit for the new offensive scheme. Let's hope that with the JUCO guards brought in that Schlueter can redshirt and grow into a starting job eventually. Listed as an OG for now but may develop into a nice OT with quick feet and athleticism.

OG - Conner Olson

VITALS
Position: OG
Home: Monticello, MN
Height: 6-5
Weight: 286
40-time: like it matters

Scroll of the Sworn: Committed May 6

RANKINGS
- Rivals:
- ESPN:
- Scout

Other P5 Offers: Harvard, Princeton, Yale

Videos:

NOTES:

Yeah...so...that is a REALLY impressive offer list isn't it? But he is a pretty talented kid who has added some needed weight. More of a guard prospect who needs time to add strength. He will redshirt.

Peferred Walk-Ons

  • WR - Kieran Johnson - JUCO who was a 1st Team All-American. Interesting pick-up
  • FB - Connor Mohs - from Woodbury
  • ATH - Danny Pietruszewski - South St. Paul