14 Recruits College Football Coaches Wish They Had on Their Team This Year
Programs have a right to be excited about their commitments. They evaluate these players and put in tons of hours working the phones and visits recruiting them. So when they finally get a commitment, the fact that they are getting a talented player to join their program can be huge joy.
When their team suffers injuries or is lacking something that a recruit they have committed possesses, coaches can only think about what would be if that recruit was on their team now. The following piece is a list of 14 committed recruits whose future coaches may be wishing they could have played college ball this year.
Antonio Allen, S, and Rashard Fant, ATH (Indiana)
Kevin Wilson's program has struggled again this year, and he needs to keep infusing the roster with not only more talent, but "his" guys. Allen and Fant provide both of those components, and I'm sure Wilson would have loved to have them this year.
Allen is a 5'10", 195-pound hard-hitting SS that could have impacted the Hoosier defense this year. Fant could be the Antwaan Randle El, which is enough said to IU football fans.
Tyler Bruggman, QB (Washington State)
This season for the Cougars has been dreadful. They are 2-9 and have not won a Pac-12 game in eight tries so far.
Mike Leach has already seen his best player, WR Marquess Wilson, quit the team, and an investigation is being conducted. The main position Leach's system must be solid at is QB, and I'm sure having his own guy in Bruggman would have made this year more positive for Leach.
Darrien Howard, LB (West Virginia)
The Mountaineers were on a fast track to seeing QB Geno Smith win a Heisman and making a BCS bowl. Today, they have a .500 record at 5-5.
Their defense really doesn't stop anybody and has given up 50 points four times this season. Getting a big 6'2", 240-pound LB like Howard would have helped Dana Holgorsen's team.
Greg Webb, DT and Brian Walker, CB (North Carolina)
The Tar Heels defense surrendered 68 points to Georgia Tech a few weeks ago. That's 68 points, folks.
That isn't good.
After that game, at least some part of Larry Fedora had to have thought what would have happened if the 6'2", 290-pound strong DT Webb and the 5'11", 180-pound CB Walker would have helped play for the UNC defense.
Rob Wheelwright, WR (Wisconsin)
Wisconsin isn't known for producing receivers, as the Badgers love to run the football. They've had a slightly disappointing year, and part of that is because so much attention from defenses has been on RB Montee Ball.
Having the smooth, athletic and deceptively quick Wheelwright take the top off the defense could have helped in Madison this season. Wheelwright is a 6'2", 170-pound WR that could have aided the offense in the passing game.
Aaron Zwahlen, QB (Hawaii)
I'm sure Norm Chow likes Sean Schroeder, but Aaron Zwahlen has more talent and is the long term guy for the Warriors. The 6'3", 185-pound Zwahlen has a cannon for an arm and makes solid decisions.
Schroeder has only thrown for barely over 1,500 yards and nine TDs. I think Chow may have been better off taking his chances with the young Zwahlen.
Standish Dobard, TE and Travis Johnson, TE (Miami)
The TE position at Miami has only generated 23 receptions this year, and I think Al Golden knows that he should be getting more production from his seam players.
Having the 6'4", 245-pound Dobard and 6'3", 231-pound Johnson both get reps would have helped the Hurricane offense a bit. Both of these guys can flat-out ball and impact the passing game as receiving TE's.
Dorian Johnson, OT (Pitt)
Johnson committed to Pitt over the weekend, reports ESPNU. He's a big time player and commitment for Paul Chryst, who's a coach that loves to run the ball dating from his Wisconsin days.
I'm sure that Chryst would loved to have the 6'6", 285-pound Johnson opening holes and helping his rushing attack in 2012. Looks like the Panthers head coach will have to wait until 2013.
Ryan Green, RB (Florida State)
Chris Thompson was putting on speed running clinics before he went down with a leg injury for Florida State. What better way to replace a speed demon than with another one?
Ryan Green could have done some of things FSU was asking Thompson to do, and the 5'10", 185-pounder's speed would have helped keep the Seminole offense on schedule.
Jimbo Fisher would have enjoyed that.
Sua' Cravens, S (USC)
Monte Kiffin will go down as one of the best defensive minds this game has ever seen. However, he just may not be suited for the college game, as USC's defense wasn't impressive this year.
Just look at the Oregon game. The Ducks were not running a complicated offense; they just executed better. Arizona did the same thing, and so did UCLA.
Having even more speed, athleticism and instincts to play both the run and pass would have been great for the Trojans defense. The 6'1", 210-pound 5-star Cravens has all of that and then some.
Reuben Foster, LB (Auburn)
The Tigers defense is running a new scheme under Brian Van Gorder, but they also may lack a true leader. Foster has shown leadership traits, and it also doesn't hurt that he may be the best LB prospect in years.
With Gene Chizik being a defensive-minded head coach, you have to think that it's crossed his mind at least once about projecting how Foster would have fit in with this year's Auburn team.
I'm not saying Foster is a savior, but I'm pretty sure Chizik knows he would have helped Auburn this year.
Edwin Weathersby is the College Football Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. He has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants, Cleveland Browns and the Las Vegas Gladiators of the Arena League. He spent a year evaluating prep prospects and writing specific recruiting and scouting content articles for Student Sports Football (formerly ESPN Rise-HS). A syndicated scout and writer, he's also contributed to WeAreSC.com, GatorBait.net and Diamonds in the Rough Inc., a College Football and NFL Draft magazine.