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NC State Football Recruiting Update – May 16, 2019



NC State Football Recruiting Update – May 16, 2019

New Commitment

OT Austin Blaske (6″4, 295) attends South Effingham High School in Bloomingdale, Georgia. Rated a 4* and the #30 Offensive Tackle in the Country on 24/7 sports and Scout, NR 3* on Rivals, and a NR 3* on ESPN. Blaske had a very impressive showing at a Rivals Camp Series Event on March 15, 2019, and since, his recruitment has blown up. Here’s what Rivals had to say about his performance at the camp:

“Austin Blaske picked up an offer from Coastal Carolina not long after his impressive performance Sunday. The word spread pretty quickly. He is a big body at offensive tackle and he showed good bend and the ability to perform well against the quicker and bigger defensive ends.”



4* CB Joseph Johnson has decommitted from State. Similar to Blaske, Johnson’s recruitment has exploded since a camp event earlier this spring. Johnson is going to officially visit Ohio State this weekend.

A Defensive Whiff…

Target 4* LB Mohamed Kaba from Clinton HS (NC) surprised a lot of people when he committed to South Carolina last week. Kaba probably has an opportunity to see the field quicker at South Carolina, particularly because we have 4*’s Payton Wilson and Levi Jones who are underclassmen in our program. We still have at least 3 targets on the board at Linebacker – 3* Jayland Parker, 3* Jamari Stewart, 4* Trenton Simpson.

This Week’s Decision

Target 4* DE Myles Murphy is deciding his college destination this Friday, May 17th. He trimmed his list to his top 5 on Tuesday night and did not include us so he is now off of our board.

New Offers

TE Sage Ennis – 6’4″, 220. Attends Lincoln HS in Tallahassee, Florida. Rated the #28 Tight End in the Country (3*) by 24/7 sports and Scout, NR (3*) on Rivals, and a NR (3*) on ESPN. Junior Stats: 23 carries for 20 yards and 9 Touchdowns, 39 catches for 596 yards and 4 Touchdowns.

Junior Year Highlights:

WR/CB Marcus Clarke Jr – 5’11”, 175. Attends Winter Park HS in Winter Park, Florida. NR on 24/7 sports and Scout, NR (3*) on Rivals, and NR (3*) on ESPN. Clarke was rated the #10 prospect on the Orlando Sentinel’s Super 60 list last season. Junior Stats: 59 catches for 1,004 yards and 21 Touchdowns, 15 punt returns for 196 yards with 2 Touchdowns, 3 Interceptions for 100 yards with 2 Touchdowns, and 5 rushes for 14 yards.

Junior Year Highlights

WR Stephen Gosnell – 6’2″, 198. Attends East Surry HS in Pilot Mountain, North Carolina. NR (3*) on 24/7 sports and Scout, NR on Rivals, NR on ESPN. He did a lot of different things for East Surry during his junior season.

Junior Season Stats: Passing – 66 for 120, 1.134 yards with 14 Touchdowns and 7 Interceptions, 110 rushes for 1,080 yards and 17 Touchdowns, 21 catches for 430 yards with 7 Touchdowns, 13 Kickoff Returns for 272 yards.

Junior Year Highlights

LB Phillip Webb – 6’4″, 210. Attends Lanier HS in Buford, Georgia. Rated the #8 Outside Linebacker in the Country (4*) on 24/7 sports and Scout, the #5 Outside Linebacker in the Country (4*) on Rivals, and the #3 Outside Linebacker in the Country (4*) on ESPN. Junior Season Stats: 86 Tackles, 20 Tackles for Loss, 10.5 Sacks, 27 QB Hurries, 7 Pass Deflections, 1 Fumble Recovery for a Touchdown, and 3 Blocked Punts.

Junior Year Highlights

TE Matthew Hibner – 6’4″, 228. Attends Lake Braddock HS in Burke, Virginia. NR on 24/7, Scout, and Rivals so far. He officially visited Virginia Tech last weekend and rumors have him committing to them soon. He was just offered by Virginia Tech on April 29th.

Junior Year Highlights

WR Rico Powers – 6’2″, 180. Attends Jenkins HS in Savannah, Georgia. He has attended Benedictine HS in Savannah before (same high school as 2019 Commit S Jakeen Harris). Rated the #38 Wide Receiver in the Country (4*) by 24/7 sports and Scout, the #29 Wide Receiver in the Country and the #133 Overall Prospect in the Country (4*) by Rivals, and the #59 Wide Receiver in the Country (4*) by ESPN.

Junior Season Stats: 115 carries for 1,006 yards with 17 Touchdowns, 28 receptions for 561 yards with 6 Touchdowns, 9 Kickoff Returns for 122 yards, and 5 Punt Returns for 32 yards.

Junior Year Highlights

ATH James Shellman IV – 6’1″, 170. Attends Islands HS in Savannah, Georgia. Rated the #100 Athlete in the Country (3*) by 24/7 sports and Scout, and the #107 overall prospect in Georgia and a NR Athlete (3*) on Rivals. He plays QB almost exclusively for his high school, but probably projects as a wide receiver or defensive back due to his athleticism and ball skills.

Junior Year Highlights:

The Revised Hot 30 List

4* WR Mushin Muhammad, 3* OG Jonathan Odorno, 3* OG Sean Hill, 3* DT Henry Bryant, 4* CB Joseph Johnson, 5* DE Desmond Evans, 3* WR Jhari Patterson, 3* LB Jayland Parker, 3* LB Jamari Stewart, 3* WR Antonio Barber, 3* OT TJ Lawson, 3* OL Alex Atcavage, 4* DE Jacolbe Cowan, 4* DT Kendrick Bingley-Jones, 3* RB Elijah Green, 3* WR/ATH Stephen Gosnell, 3* OL Anthony Carter Jr, 4* LB Trenton Simpson, 3* TE Sage Ennis, 3* WR Aydin Henningham, 3* WR Marcus Clarke Jr, 3* S Nekhi Meredith, 4* ATH Ja’Quarious Conley, 4*WR Rico Powers, 4* LB Phillip Webb, 3* OG Vershon Lee, NR TE Matthew Hibner , 3* ATH Chris Long, and 3* ATH James Shellman.

3* ATH Justin Shorter was on this list before he re-classified to the 2021 class (he attends a Prep Academy in NJ currently). 4* DE Myles Murphy was on this list before he trimmed his schools to his top 5 on Tuesday night and did not include State in his top 5.

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#6 Kicker Ian Williams Commits to NC State



Place Kicker Ian Williams of Weddington High School (Matthews, NC) has verbally committed to NC State, after an Official Visit to Raleigh this weekend.

Kohls Kicking ranks Williams as the #6 kicker nationally in the 2020 recruiting class.

Williams is new to Kohl’s. He attended a training camp in the summer of 2019 and showed very well at that event. He followed it up with a dominant performance in July of 2019 at the National Scholarship Camp. Williams was in contention for the Under All-America Game because his field goals and kickoffs are special. His clean leg swing and repeatable motion are very impressive. He also has the ability to hit some very big punts. Williams is someone who should be a D1 scholarship player this fall! (Kohls)
247Sports ranks him as the #12 kicker in the nation.
Williams also held offers from Army, Wofford, UNC-Charlotte and Western Carolina. With Punter Mackenzie Morgan deciding to transfer, a scholarship was extended to Williams.
With Williams’ commitment, NC State will have 4 Special Teams players on scholarship at the start of the 2020 football season.
Junior Place Kicker Chris Dunn
Redshirt Junior Punter Trenton Gill
Sophomore Long Snapper Joe Shimko
Freshman Place Kicker Ian Williams
Williams is the 18th member of NC State’s 2020 recruiting class.

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NC State DT Commit Pheldarius Payne Scores TD in JUCO National Championship



Last night 3-Star NC State Defensive Tackle verbal commit Pheldarius Payne and his Lackawanna squad lost to Mississippi Gulf Coast in the Junior College National Championship game.

Payne had a scoop and score that was one of the highlights of the night.

He also finished with 7 tackles and 2.5 tackles for loss.

Payne finished the season with 30 tackles, 12 tackles for loss and 4 sacks.

An interesting wrinkle in Payne’s recruitment is the fact that he’s taking an Official Visit to Nebraska this weekend.

The Huskers offered Payne on November 22nd. Payne has yet to take his Official Visit to NC State.

With a lot of the Wolfpack verbal commits taking Official Visits to Raleigh this weekend, it will be interesting to see if Payne flips with the December 18th early signing period right around the corner.

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3-Star CB Joshua Pierre-Louis Officially Visiting NC State this Weekend



3-Star 2020 Cornerback Joshua Pierre-Louis (5’10”/170) will be taking an Official Visit to NC State this weekend.

The Wolfpack offered Pierre-Louis back on March 12th, and also holds offers from Auburn, Duke, Louisville, Illinois, UCF, UCONN, Rutgers, Minnesota, Washington St., and others

He plays for The Benjamin School in North Palm Beach, Florida.

Pierre-Louis will be taking his Official Visit along with 4-Star Offensive Lineman R.J. Adams & 4-Star JUCO DB Justin Harrington.

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NC State Football Recruiting Update – December 5, 2019



NC State Football Recruiting Update – December 5, 2019


Backup QB Matt McKay and Backup OT Justin Chase have decided to leave the program.

Available scholarships left for 2020

Around 5-6, maybe more depending on addition attrition between now and February’s Signing Day. I fully anticipate NC State will sign 20 in December and several more in February. Rumor has it that they will have several more deductions from the offensive side of the ball and possibly several on the defensive side.


Recent Commits

WR Anthony Smith – Attends Huntingtown HS in Maryland. 6’1″, 175. Rated a NR 2* on Rivals, NR on 24/7Sports, and NR on ESPN.

He’s an absolute burner. Career records in 100m was 10.98, 200 m was 21.96 in Spring 2019, during his junior season. This would translate to a 4.5 40, which is very good to be 6’1″. He was officially clocked at 4.46 at a camp in the summer of 2019. Smith could easily become a vertical passing threat or another underneath extension of the running game – like Nyheim Hines was during his first year at State.

Senior Season Stats:  35 catches for 918 yards with 14 Touchdowns, 17 Tackles with 1 Tackle for Loss.


WR Jalen Coit – Attends Cheraw HS in South Carolina. 6’1″, 165. Rated a 3* and #17 overall player in South Carolina on Rivals, the #185 Wide Receiver in the Country and the #20 overall player in South Carolina (3*) by 24/7Sports, and the #163 Wide Receiver in the Country (3*) on ESPN.

He’s a stellar two sport athlete who averages around 19 points per game in basketball. Most analysts have him slated to be a slot receiver in college. Several analysts have stated that they think he has a higher ceiling and better open field play making ability than the top rated receiver in South Carolina (Jaylin Hyatt). Coit also projects to potentially play in the slot with Smith. Coit could be a potential to play immediately as a kick returner along side Lesane (if Lesane can figure out his fumbling issues). Coit has been named to the Shrine Bowl team for South Carolina.

Senior Season Stats: 1 for 1 passing for 9 yards, 1 carry for 39 yards, 55 catches for 842 yards with 11 Touchdowns, 2 Two Point Conversions Scored, 7 Kickoff Returns for 67 yards, and 13 punt returns for 154 yards with 1 Touchdown.


Big Visitors at UNC Game

The #1 JUCO Safety in the Country was at the UNC game. Justin Harrington, who currently attends Bakersfield College in California, was offered a scholarship by State late last week. Harrington attended Southeast Raleigh HS as a prep prospect but could not qualify academically to attend a major college. He was high school teammates with Current Nickel Tyler Baker-Williams. Harrington is planning to be a mid-year enrollment at whatever college he decides to attend. Right now, it looks like Oklahoma is the major competition for Harrington. Harrington is also planning an official visit to Oklahoma State and possibly Southern Cal before making his college decision.


Transfer 3* OL Joe Kane from Virginia Tech attended the game. Transfers look like they are going to be the route to go for several different empty spots for the staff to find, particularly in high needs areas (depending on further attrition, I would argue that WR, QB, and OL/DL are these areas of potential grad transfer targets). Kane was recently offered a scholarship to play D-Line at Elon.


Transfers to Mention:

I just list these as possibilities that the coaches would be interested in targeting and the reasons:

QB Jack Allison – Transferring from West Virginia, knows and was recruited by Tony Gibson

QB Jake Bentley – Transferring from South Carolina, knows and was coached by Kurt Roper

QB Feleipe Franks – Transferring from Florida, could be a target because he would have immediate eligibility

QB Dekereon Joyner – Transferring from South Carolina. NC State was his #2 school before he committed to South Carolina. He also knows Kurt Roper. Converted to WR this year.

WR Brian Montgomery – Transferring from Miami, NC State offered him a scholarship during the 2018 cycle

WR/APB Tevin Bush – Transferring from West Virginia, knows and was recruited by Tony Gibson

TE/WR Daevon Robinson – Transferring from Rutgers. NC State was his #2 school when he decided to stay home and commit to Rutgers

OT Carter Colquitt – Transferring from Ole Miss. NC State was his #2 school when he decided to commit to Ole Miss

LB Derek Boykins – Transferring from South Carolina. NC State was his #3 school when he decided to commit to South Carolina. From NC, and NC State is also recruiting his younger brother.

JUCO DE Dionte Gipson – Attends Hutchinson CC in Stone Mountain, Georgia. NC State recruited that area well a few years ago when we landed Jakobi Meyers

JUCO RB Brian Snead – NC State was recruiting him when he was in HS, attends Iowa Western CC, a place where they’ve have had some success in the past. He attended HS with former Pack RB Erin Collins, however the Wolfpack will probably stay away from him due to some unsavory criminal activity when he was enrolled as a freshman at Ohio State.

JUCO WR Justin McGriff – NC State recruits the Tampa area well. He has extremely good size and long arms that Coach D covets – 6’5″, 210.


Official Visits Coming Up

December 6th:

4* JUCO S Justin Harrington

4* OG RJ Adams – recently decommited from Penn State. NC State was one of his top schools before he committed. Visited for UNC game also. Alabama visit is after this.

3* DB Joshua Pierre Louis – Smaller CB/NLB type prospect who also has a lot of speed.

Most of NC State’s current commits will also be officially visiting this week (Porter Rooks, Devan Boykin are confirmed via social media).


Things to keep an eye on 

If James Franklin leaves Penn State and goes to Florida State, former 4* CB Joseph Johnson could also be in play again for NC State (his father really liked State).

If Will Muschamp leaves South Carolina, current Target 4* WR Rico Powers and Target 4* LB Mohamad Kaba could be in play again for NC State. (Unlikely Muschamp leaves)


My Take on the Coaching Switch

In the periphery of the season, it looks like the canning of Huxtable was due to the huge amount of points the defense continued to allow, bad technique by the defensive backs, and bad play calling at times.

However, there is another silver lining to the canning of Huxtable in deference to the other members of the staff.

Des Kitchings and George McDonald are considered to be the best recruiters of offensive talent on the staff, whereas, Kevin Patrick and Tony Gibson are considered to be the best recruits of defensive talent on the staff.  According to a pre-season publication, Huxtable was responsible for recruiting Alamance County/Orange County in NC and the Orlando to Space Coast areas of Florida (zero currently committed players in the 2020 cycle). The last three commits all came from the areas in which McDonald and Kitchings are assigned.  This is not to say that the coaching switches are completely done, but I don’t foresee any more coaching switches before the December Signing Day event, which will take place on December 18, 2019.


On the Road

All the coaches are on the road this week to meet with current commits and see current targets. George McDonald was visiting South Carolina earlier this week and extended an offer to 6’4″ receiver, Ger-Cari Caldwell, who had a stellar senior season at Northwestern High School in Rock Hill, South Carolina, and was named to the Shrine Bowl. Caldwell is an interesting prospect because of his size and playmaking ability. Not necessarily a burner, but runs great routes and has great hands.


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