Boston College head coach Steve Addazio is off to a fast start on the recruiting trail for 2014. The first year Eagles coach has already landed verbal commitments from four players, including three of four at offensive skill positions of need. The latest, Darius Wade, should help Addazio and Day transition to a more run-oriented offense starting next year.
Addazio and the Eagles staff are checking off several check boxes early, including landing a commitment from Worcester's Isaac Yiadom. Arguably no other trend was more indicative of just how far Boston College football recruiting fell under Spaziani than the program's inability to keep in-state football recruits in state.
Hopefully the staff is able to reverse this trend starting with this year's recruiting class. Here are a few of the state's best recruits.
Connor Strachan, LB (Needham, Mass. / St. Sebastians Country Day) - ****
Offers: Boston College, UCONN, UMass, Virginia, Wake Forest
Strachan is a 4* ILB from St. Sebastians Country Day in Needham. The 6-foot-1, 230 pound linebacker has the physical attributes to play on the inside at the BCS level. He has a great nose for the football, reading and reacting quickly to developing plays. Sounds Kuechly-esque. He plays a number of positions including RB and FB and is praise for being a total football player. His uncle, Steve, played football at Boston College and later with the Los Angeles Raiders. Strachan already claims offers from fellow ACC programs Virginia and Wake Forest. Hopefully Addazio's run of winning head-to-head recruiting battles with ACC and BCS AQ programs continues by landing Strachan, who likely could thrive in Don Brown's attacking / aggressive defense.
Jon Baker, OG (Millis, Mass. / Millis) - ***
Offers: Boston College, UCONN, Harvard, Holy Cross, UMass, Michigan State, Ohio, Old Dominion, Temple, Yale
Baker, a three-star offensive guard from Millis, is receiving interest from a number of BCS programs and already claims offers from UCONN, Michigan State, Rutgers and Temple. Stanford, Michigan, Vanderbilt, Wisconsin and UCLA have also expressed varying amounts of interest in the two-way lineman. Baker projects as a center in college. During his junior season, he registered 78 tackles with four sacks at defensive tackle to earn a spot on ESPNBoston.com's annual All-State Team. He's considered one of the top prospects in New England. Certainly sounds like one of the key guys to keep in-state to help rebuild O-Line U.
Johnathan Thomas, RB (Danvers, Mass. / St. John's Prep) - ***
Offers: Boston College, UCONN, Maryland, UMass
The 5-foot-11, 195 pound running back out of St. John's Prep would be a solid addition to Boston College's thinning stable of running backs. Addazio and the Eagles can promise early playing time and a heavy emphasis on the run game. He's a strong, downhill runner that's effective running on the inside. As a junior, Thomas rushed for over 1,800 yards helping to lead St. John's Prep to a Catholic Conference title and Division 1 Super Bowl victory over Brockton. In addition to BC, he also claims offers from UCONN, Maryland and UMass. Snagging Thomas to go with Outlow would be a solid core of backs to replace senior Andre Williams and Rolandan Finch.
Kevin Cohee, ILB (West Roxbury, Mass. / Roxbury Latin) - ***
Offers: Boston College, UCONN, UMass
Cohee is a two-way tight end / linebacker playing for Roxbury Latin. The 6-foot-3, 240-pound ILB claims offers from BC, UCONN and UMass. Rutgers, Syracuse and N.C. State have also expressed varying amounts of interest. It's unclear whether he'll play offense or defense in college. UCONN is looking at Cohee as a tight end while he could also serve as a LB / DE. As a receiver last year, Cohee had 23 catches for 364 yards and five touchdowns with incoming QB recruit Mackay Lowrie throwing to him. On D, Cohee recorded a team-high 37 tackles, three sacks and an INT for a TD. Cohee is a lifelong resident of Chestnut Hill, so playing close to home may be a factor in his recruitment.
Lubern Figaro, ATH (Everett, Mass. / Everett) - ***
Offers: Boston College, UMass
Figaro started all 13 games this past season for Everett HS, alternating between strong safety and slot cornerback. He's been a key part of the Everett defense that has won three straight Eastern Massachusetts Super Bowl titles. The 6-foot-0, 180 pound defensive back projects as a safety in college. He claims offers from BC and UMass, with Temple also showing interest. Unclear whether Syracuse is showing interest yet in Figaro, but Boston College would probably be best served not letting another defensive back from Everett High School leave the state.
Build that fence, Addazio.