Boise State Football Recruiting: Breaking Down Top 2015 Target at Each Position
The Boise State Broncos seem to be off to a good start when it comes to the 2015 football recruiting class. According to 247Sports, head coach Bryan Harsin and his staff have secured five verbal commits thus far.
There is obviously a long way to go until those players and others sign on the dotted line to play for the Broncos. However, the early commitments by very talented players have given the Broncos momentum and have sounded the alarm to the rest of the Mountain West Conference that Harsin and his assistant coaches are a force to be reckoned with.
Recruiting has to be a grueling process for any coaching staff. The time and effort they put into the entire process is nothing less than remarkable. In fact, just this week Coach Harsin sent his entire staff out to 130 high schools in Idaho to make sure and lock down the state.
There will no doubt be some in-state talent signing to play for Boise State in 2015, but realistically, most of its future roster will come from various locations around the nation, with the majority of them coming from California and Texas.
Let's look at the 2015 recruiting list for the Broncos in an effort to determine the top targets this staff has identified and what the chances are those athletes will play their college ball on The Blue.
Quarterback: Brett Rypien
Brett Rypien seemed to be the Broncos' No. 1 target at quarterback for the 2015 recruiting class from early on, and that attention has paid off. Rypien, a 4-star recruit, has already verbally committed to attend Boise State, and from all indications, that commitment should stick.
Rypien is the No. 9-rated quarterback in the nation, and he is also the nephew of former NFL quarterback Mark Rypien. His uncle played college ball at Washington State, but Brett has decided to blaze his own path in Boise.
He should be a good fit in the new offense being crafted by head coach Bryan Harsin and offensive coordinator Mike Sanford.
Wide Receiver: Akilian Butler
Wide receiver Akilian Butler is another top-level recruit already committed to becoming a Bronco in 2015. Butler is out of West Mesquite High School in Texas. He is a 3-star recruit and is ranked as the No. 89 player in the state of Texas.
As a sophomore in 2013, Butler grabbed 37 passes for 446 yards and two touchdowns. In 2012, he had 28 catches for 377 yards. While those stats aren't overly impressive, the play of Butler is. He has all the attributes of a good wide receiver, and in a Boise State offense those talents would be put to much better use.
Butler had offers from Clemson and Colorado. He also had interest from Baylor and Notre Dame. His commitment seems to be solid, and Boise State fans will probably see him on The Blue one day.
Running Back: Devine Ozigbo
Devine Ozigbo is a highly sought after 5'11”, 215-pound 3-star running back. He currently has offers from Boise State, Iowa, Miami, Wisconsin and interest from Baylor. His highlights show why.
It is a long shot for the Broncos on this one, but you never know.
Boise State fans should also keep an eye on a similar type of running back named Sheldon Croney. He is not as fast as Ozigbo, but he is close in size at 5'11”, 207 pounds. Croney has offers from Colorado State and Boise State right now, but he also has Arizona, Indiana and Stanford interested.
Offensive Line: Shane Lemieux
Shane Lemieux is a 6'6”, 285-pound offensive lineman. As if that isn't impressive enough, you ought to see what he does with it all. His film is something to watch. He manhandles guys, and he can play guard or tackle with ease.
Boise State has serious competition landing Lemieux, but he would be a great fit on the Broncos' offensive line.
Currently, the big lineman out of Yakima, Washington, has offers from South Carolina, Oregon, Boise State, Arizona State and Arkansas, just to name a few.
Tight End: C.J. O'Grady
With a new offense that looks more like the old offense Boise State ran before its 2013 experiment, the position of tight end will become more of a focus.
Right now, the Broncos have just a couple of guys offered at that position for 2015. The highest ranked of the two is 3-star recruit C.J. O'Grady out of Fayetteville, Arkansas.
O'Grady is 6'4”, 230 pounds, and his film shows a player that needs a bit of development but certainly has the skills to play for the Broncos. However, chances of landing him might be slim considering that one of the offers he has on the table right now is from Arkansas.
Defensive Line: Landis Durham
Landis Durham can play linebacker or defensive end at the college level, and his versatility makes him a great fit in a Marcel Yates defense. If you watch his film, he has deceptive speed, and his ability to react to the ball is impressive.
Durham is a 3-star recruit out of Plano, Texas. He is 6'2”, 220 pounds and runs a 4.6 40-yard dash.
Boise State will have to impress Durham in a big way, as he has current offers on the table from Nebraska, TCU, Texas A&M, Washington and interest from Texas.
Linebacker: Kyler Manu
Kyler Manu is one of those in-state prospects Bryan Harsin is trying to make sure doesn't leave the state to play his college ball.
Manu is from Highland High in Pocatello, Idaho. He is 6'2” and 195 pounds, and he runs a 4.5 40-yard dash. He has some interest from Washington and Wisconsin, but his commitment to Boise State seems solid.
Manu is an impressive linebacker with good instincts. He is quick to the ball and can punish with the best of them. If you watch his film, it is clear why Boise State is so high on this guy. No pun intended.
Look for Manu to be a star for the Broncos in the near future.
Cornerback: Josh Butler
Josh Butler is another amazing player out of West Mesquite High School in Mesquite, Texas. He is 5'11”, 175 pounds, fast, tough and has a knack for getting in the right place at the right time.
If you take a look at his highlights, you will notice his quickness to the ball and his ability to blanket the wide receiver without doing those things that draw a penalty.
The Broncos have a chance to land Butler, but Miami, Baylor, Clemson and Notre Dame have all offered him as well.
Safety: DeChaun Holiday
If someone was to list the qualities of the perfect college safety, they would be describing much of what DeChaun Holiday does.
The 4-star recruit is 6'2” and 195 pounds, and he knows how to hit. He is also fast and makes great open-field tackles. He is a good decision-maker, and saying he is athletic is probably an understatement.
However, Boise State will probably have to look elsewhere.
Holiday has offers from Oklahoma, Oregon, Arizona and several others. His top two offers at this point seem to be USC and UCLA. Most likely, he will end up on one of those rosters.
Athlete: Darrell Stewart
Darrell Stewart is one of those recruits that Boise State coaches seem to love. He is listed as a 3-star dual-threat quarterback and a safety. However, you could probably put him in any one of three other positions: running back, wide receiver and cornerback.
In fact, if you watch his film, his highlights at receiver might be his most impressive.
Stewart has already verbally committed to Boise State, but the problem with guys like him is that other teams start to look at them late in the recruiting process.
If he sticks with his commitment, he could be something special for the Broncos. It will certainly be interesting to see how the process pans out.
All rankings and statistics via 247Sports.