Every Big Ten Football Team's Ace 2015 Recruiter
The Big Ten recruiting trail is awfully competitive. Head coaches can't do it all by themselves, so each of them must have at least one ace recruiter on staff.
Being an ace recruiter is a big job; that assistant coach is usually assigned to recruit the program's top targets. He is also expected to bring in the most commitments for his school's recruiting class.
With July not being too far away, the 2015 recruiting cycle is moving along. That also means ace recruiters in the Big Ten are starting to emerge.
Ace recruiter: Ben Strickland
On the field, Ben Strickland is the secondary coach at Wisconsin. However, he currently is the Badgers' top recruiter.
Out of the nine players who have pledged to play in Madison so far this year, he is responsible for four of them. He was the primary recruiter for 4-star offensive lineman Jon Dietzen, who is Wisconsin's headliner.
Ace recruiter: Joe Rossi
Rutgers has just six commitments, but Joe Rossi helped the Scarlet Knights land 3-star athlete Alkadair Ports, who is perhaps the most important commitment in head coach Kyle Flood's class due to his versatility.
Rossi hails from Pittsburgh and coordinates the special teams in Piscataway, New Jersey. Some of his top uncommitted targets include 3-star athlete Dontae Strickland, 3-star safety Myles Hartsfield and 3-star tight end Jake Pickard.
Ace recruiter: Taver Johnson
Taver Johnson has made coaching stops at Arkansas and Ohio State and with the Cleveland Browns. He coaches defensive backs for Purdue, where he'll help the secondary improve this fall.
He got a future pupil in 3-star safety Andy Chelf, who committed a few days ago. Look for Johnson to lead Purdue's 2015 recruiting charge moving forward.
Things are going so well with recruiting in Happy Valley these days that it is a tie for who is Penn State's ace recruiter. Sean Spencer, who coaches defensive linemen, has helped get six commitments.
The same can be said for Charles Huff, who coaches running backs and special teams. Spencer helped PSU land 4-star prospects such as defensive tackle Adam McLean, athlete Kamonte Carter and running back Saquon Barkley.
Receivers coach Josh Gattis was also considered.
Ace recruiter: Ed Warinner
Ohio State is another program that is armed with a great staff of recruiters. Leading the way for the Buckeyes right now is Ed Warinner, who coaches the offensive line in Columbus.
Ohio State has six commitments, with two being credited to Warinner. He plucked 3-star offensive tackle Grant Schmidt from South Dakota, plus he was the primary recruiter for explosive 4-star athlete Eric Glover-Williams.
At his first press conference in January of 2012, Warinner said the following, according to Tyler Robinson of TheLantern.com: “No. 1, we want great football players. So dimensions aren't as important as getting great football players.”
Ace recruiter: Adam Cushing
Northwestern has 12 commitments, and Adam Cushing is responsible for four of them. The Wildcats' offensive line coach coordinates their recruiting efforts, and he was the primary recruiter for 4-star receiver David Dowell, who is the headliner of the class.
Cushing also got a commitment from 4-star running back Andrew Dowell, David's brother. Offensive tackle Adam Lemke-Bell and guard Andrew Otterman are 3-star blockers whom Cushing recruited to work with him.
Eric Lee is a 4-star cornerback who is the top player in Nebraska's 10-man class. It's not surprising to see his primary recruiter at Nebraska was Charlton Warren, who tutors defensive backs for Big Red.
John Garrison coaches the offensive line for head coach Bo Pelini. He is responsible for Nebraska adding 3-star recruits such as guard Michael Decker, offensive tackle Christian Gaylord and defensive linemen Khalil Davis and Carlos Davis.
Ace recruiter: Jeff Phelps
Minnesota has just three commitments, but defensive line coach Jeff Phelps is responsible for two of them.
The Ball State alumnus is credited for the commitments of Jacob Huff and Julian Huff, two 3-star back-seven defensive prospects. Showing how important Phelps' recruiting prowess is valued by head coach Jerry Kill, he is the lead recruiter for elite uncommitted 4-star defensive end and Minnesota native Jashon Cornell.
Ace recruiter: Terry Samuel
Terry Samuel coaches receivers for Michigan State, but the Spartans also value his skills as a recruiter. He played a big role in the program getting a pledge from 4-star defensive tackle Kyonta Stallworth, who is the headliner of head coach Mark Dantonio's class.
Ace recruiter: Curt Mallory
Ranked No. 31 in the country by 247Sports, Michigan is not having a recruiting cycle up to previous standards. The Wolverines have just seven commitments, and head coach Brady Hoke and his staff have a lot of work to do with some of the top uncommitted 2015 prospects.
However, a bright spot for Big Blue has been the recruiting prowess of secondary coach Curt Mallory. Out of the seven pledges for Michigan, Mallory has had a hand in three of them.
Ace recruiter: Keith Dudzinski
Maryland has a class of seven commitments with just one 4-star prospect: guard E.J. Donahue.
However, inside linebackers coach Keith Dudzinski has helped the Terrapins land 3-star cornerback Kareem Ali and 3-star guard Ellis McKennie. Head coach Randy Edsall also has Dudzinski as the point person for uncommitted recruits such as 4-star defensive tackles Christian Wilkins and Neville Gallimore, as well as 3-star linebacker Wyatt Cook.
Ace recruiter: Reese Morgan
Defensive line coach Reese Morgan is Iowa's ace recruiter right now. The Hawkeyes have nine commitments, with four coming from Morgan being involved.
Look for Morgan to help Iowa land another underrated recruiting class by adding a few more commitments before the end of this cycle.
Ace recruiter: Kevin Johns
Indiana only has four commitments, with two coming from the aid of offensive coordinator Kevin Johns. Head coach Kevin Wilson let Johns personally recruit 3-star quarterback Tommy Stevens, as Johns will be the young passer's personnel coach.
Johns also got Stevens a receiver in 3-star recruit Leon Thornton and is assisting in the recruitment of uncommitted 3-star linebacker Reagan Williams. In addition, Johns is the primary recruiter for 3-star guard Hunter Littlejohn.
Ace recruiter: Alex Golesh
Illinois has six commitments, and tight ends coach Alex Golesh has helped with three of them.
Running backs Dre Brown and Reggie Corbin, and tight end Andrew Davis are 3-star recruits whom Golesh helped land. The Illini's recruiting coordinator is also assisting with the recruitment of 4-star uncommitted athlete David Edwards, who is one of Illinois' top remaining targets.
All class recruiting ratings and rankings are from 247Sports' Composite Recruiting Rankings. All recruiting ratings and rankings are from 247Sports' Composite Rankings. Player evaluations are based on review of tape at Scout.com, Rivals and 247Sports.
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 and Cleveland Browns.
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