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Thursday Morning Brews (2/5/15)

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Linkage. Lots of linkage.

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Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Hitting the Links Is A Mamba

Ohio State Gets Isaiah Prince

Six offensive linemen in 2015, five more in the previous cycle. Eleven guys in two cycles, and eight of those were four-star recruits. They averaged 6'5.5" and over 295 pounds entering college.

Indiana Beats Out Tennessee, Louisville for Camion Patrick

IU needed wide receiver help, and Patrick is only part of a good-looking class. The front seven guys that they have will need some extreme time in the weight room, but otherwise this is a solid class, and typical of other Kevin Wilson classes we've seen.

Four-star Tennessee RB Chooses the Illini

Ke'Shawn Vaughn's nickname in high school was the Red Mamba, but he won't be wearing red anymore. 'Orange mamba' just doesn't sound as threatening, for some reason.

Reaping The Fields Of Iowa

Ferentz did a good job recruiting the O-line, including going into Ohio and getting a four-star center, James Daniels, with offers from elite programs. Daniels' older brother is already a Hawkeye. Of note, they also get Michael Ojemudia, a two-star player out of the Great Lakes State, and of course the brother of Mario Ojemudia.

Mike Riley's Influence, Plans for 2016

Stanley Morgan, a four-star receiver, was a big get for this class. Nebraska is looking good outside, but lost a safety commit at the last minute to Arkansas.

Arrington Farrar Pledges to Wisconsin

The four-star Georgia native and safety/outside linebacker is a perfect fit for Dave Aranda's defense. Chryst also signed two four-star running backs, one out of Alabama and the other from Texas. There's also a couple good tight ends, as well.

Gophers Emphasize Running, Secondary

Probably the two strongest elements to the Gophers, and there will be more of the same coming in 2015. Not a surprise.

Purdue Seeks Immediate Playmaking

Unfortunately for Purdue, almost 90% of their roster consists of mid-three-star or below former recruits.Hazell will have to show he can develop something that the Boilermakers can hang their hat on. Right now, recruiting is made even more difficult because Hazell has so little to show to recruits.

Northwestern SummaryQB Battle?

To be honest, there isn't much to really get excited about with this class. A more interesting topic is what Northwestern's options are at the quarterback position, and whether Fitz will return to a platoon system that worked before. Neither of the quarterbacks that played last year, Alviti or Oliver, were particularly impressive, but it's very possible they'll make steps in the off-season.

Michigan State Recruiting Roundup

A very good summary of Michigan State's class. Scott has been a bit under the radar, but the Ohio running back came close to five-star status. No five-stars, however, ultimately signed with the Big Ten.

Thirteen Months In, More Work To Be Done

This is James Franklin's first full class, and by and large it was very successful. Offensive line help is trickling in, including a four-star juco prospect. Franklin absolutely dominated the region, never straying farther than Wisconsin to get a player. But, while SEC schools got a bump from blue-chip players committing on Signing Day, Penn State ran out of steam late in the race and only brought in a handful of three-stars over the last month and a half.

Behind Rutgers' Commitment From Marques Ford

The jewel of Rutgers' class, the four-star defensive end will help maintain a quality pass rush. This is not an overwhelming class overall, with almost a dozen two-star players. Flood has already hit a home run with Kemoko Turay, however, who was a two-star player.

Analyzing Maryland's Class

There were ten blue-chips out of Maryland this year, and Maryland got their hands on one. Overall, they did not recruit the state well.

Recruiting Q&A: Mark DantonioPaul ChrystKevin WilsonJames Franklin

These were the most interesting of the Big Ten Blog's Q&A's. Franklin talks about exactly how little depth he inherited at tackle, Kevin Wilson talked about needing to improve quickly, and Dantonio refutes the notion that two-star players will necessarily sit out long stretches.

Scouting Karan Higdon...Keith Washington...Shelton Johnson...Grant Perry

Higdon and Johnson were interesting reads; Magnus is very high on Johnson's ability, saying he has the body of a future NFL player.

Closer Look At Minnesota's Jonathan Femi-Cole

The truth is there's usually something a little extra to lower-rated recruits that are pledged to Michigan State or Minnesota. Femi-Cole is simply a mid-three-star out of Canada, who will be fighting a crowded field of running backs. But he is impressive.

SI Winners & Losers

Michigan finds itself in the "Losers" column, while a late surge by Steve Sarkisian and the Trojans got them a recruiting title. UCLA and Auburn also cleaned up.

Top Ten True Freshmen in 2014

This was a good year for freshman contributions, with Nick Chubb carrying Georgia in the second half, Alabama running behind Cam Robinson when it absolutely needed yards, and Samaje Perine exploding for 925 yards in his last four games - which, if you were looking at those numbers funny, would come out to 3,006 over a full season.

PSU's Robinson & Barkley Are 'Physically Ready'

Penn State's three-headed monster at running back loses two pieces, but a pair of four-star pledges are headed to State College.

Looking Back At The Black Mamba's Flip | 94 Yards, 8 Points, 12 Seconds

De'Anthony Thomas was, of course, one of the more memorable flips in Signing Day history, and his Ducks finished #4, #2, and #9 in three years there.

TCU's Defensive Coordinator Announces Retirement

The timing, of course, was a bit suspect, coming late on Signing Day.

Jon Hoke Reunites With Steve Spurrier

Spurrier has been very critical of himself lately, even saying he could have done more in making a better 2015 class. Now, he shakes up his coaching staff, bringing Brady Hoke's older brother back to the college level.