It is now the beginning of June and the 2014 recruiting class is beginning to take shape. As we have talked about numerous times, BC has hit their stride early and hit some home runs with this group. But the recruiting season is far from over, and things can change between now and February 1st.
For now let's look at what we have and where Steve Addazio and his recruiters need to go from here.
QB (1): Darius Wade
RB (1): Marcus Outlow
WR (1): Thaddius Smith
OL (2): Jon Baker, James Hendren
DL: (2): Joe Vitiello, Harold Landry
LB (3): Kevin Cohee, Connor Strachan, Christian Lezzer
CB (1): Isaac Yiadom
S (1): Cameron Seward
K/P (1): Mike Knoll
That is a total of 13 scholarships that are locked in for the 2014 class. With the exodus of three current BC players this week -- George Craan, Eddie Meredith and Max Ricci -- that leaves Addazio with a robust 23 scholarships for this class. It would be a safe assumption to make that two more spots will open between now and signing day due to attrition / transfers / thrown off the team, etc. So what should the staff use those final 12 spots for? Let's explore.
Quarterback: Addazio has two routes that he has to carefully explore when he considers going after another quarterback for 2014. In one sense, with Chase Rettig gone, the program is going to desperately need a QB next year. While Wade looked great in Elite 11 camp, he is still only a kid. However, he is solidly committed to BC and is ready to enroll early to get ready for 2014. Four star dual threat QB D.J. Gillins has the Eagles in his final two and would be a slam dunk for Addazio's offensive system. But if BC grabs a QB like that, will that cause some hurt feeling in Wade and cause him to rethink his decision? It's a delicate balance that Addazio will have to consider going forward. Fellow Elite 11 QB Stephen Collier from Georgia also just received an offer and could be a recruit to watch.
Running Back: Marcus Outlow is going to be the crown jewel of the backfield. He has major offers, great skills and will be ready to jump in after Andre Williams graduates at the end of this season. But it is clear that this is a position that BC seriously lacks depth in, especially with Ryan Day's emphasis on the ground game. BC will take another running back here, possibly even two if the talent is there. Currently Madre London has BC high on his list and would be a great fit, and Jonathan Hilliman would be a great catch but has multiple SEC offers. It may be a dark horse, but even though he is committed to Maryland, keep an eye on Jonathan Thomas if Maryland falls apart this season and Edsall is out at College Park.
Wide Receiver: Another position BC is going to need to explore adding depth at is the wide receiver position. Thaddius Smith has the potential to be a dynamic slot receiver for the Eagles going forward, but they are going to need to add a big physical receiver. Going into 2014, BC is going to have Smith, Bobby Swigert, Spiffy Evans, Marcus Grant, Harrison Jackson and Joel Zoungrana. None have shown the ability to be a big down field threat yet, but 2014 could change that perception. Right now BC only is serious with 4* WR Terry Googer, but he has basically said that BC has no chance. Also BC recently offered Kadeem Goulbourne a big WR from South Carolina. This could be a position where new names pop up as the year progresses.
Tight End: One of many huge question marks going into 2013 for BC is how they are going to replace Chris Pantale. There are no tight ends on the roster that have seen the field, but have not been major contributors at the college level yet. BC is closing in on TE Trey Klock who would be a perfect fit for this system. He is massive, and a great blocker, but can still move. He is gathering up major offers every day, but BC is still the leader. He could be one of the next recruits to commit, but could drag this out as he continues to pile up offers from solid schools. NJ Tight end Ryan Izzo is also another target that has BC high up on his list.
Offensive Linemen: Addazio has said that because of the depth the team has at this position, that they would only be taking two offensive lineman this class. He currently has them with James Hendren and Jon Baker. But again if quality recruits are there, spots could open, and Ray Raulerson from Plant High School in Florida would be a name to keep an eye on.
Defensive Linemen: Here is clearly a position BC needs to continue to address due to a lack of depth especially at the defensive tackle position. Harold Landry sounds solid to BC, but man he is getting huge offers every day, and keeping him isn't a foregone conclusion. BC needs to grab one if not two defensive tackles. 3* New Jersey tackle Antoine White is visiting this weekend, he would be a major addition to this class. South Carolina DT Zeek Rodney is also a guy that could end up at the Heights in the fall. 4* NY DT Thomas Hardy has HUGE SEC offers, and has to be considered a long shot at this point, but Addazio has dazzled us before, and nothing should be taken for granted this recruiting season.
Linebackers: I'll make this one brief. BC has already gotten their man at this position, Connor Strachan. They also added depth with Cohee (who may move to another position) and Lezzer. Can't imagine they will be looking to add more depth here.
Defensive Backs: This is another position BC is going to need to address moving forward. They have Isaac Yiadom so far, but Everett CB Lubern Figaro should be a name that BC fans need to remember. He has dragged out his decision for a while now, and continues to get more and more offers (including Vanderbilt). Michael Morrissey, a safety, has an offer, and is an intriguing choice because his brother played for BC. But his chances of coming to the Heights took a huge blow after Michigan State (where his father played) offered him early in June.
Kickers/Punters: Got one of the best in the country with Mike Knoll. As long as he sticks with his commitment with the Eagles they should be fine in this area.
Again, recruiting is a fluid and dynamic changing landscape, so these projections could all change in a moments notice.