WVU recruiting: Summer camps good for evaluation

By By Chris Anderson
For the Gazette

With every ending, there is a new beginning. Or in the world of college football, a new recruiting period.

As the spring evaluation period comes to a close, college coaches prepare for a quick turnaround as they set up to host several prospect camps throughout the summer. Not only that, but with recruits on hiatus from school until August or September, high school juniors and seniors are more readily available to make extended visits to college campuses.

How quick is the turnaround for West Virginia? Well, the evaluation period ends at midnight on Saturday, and the coaching staff will host Nyheim Hines, a four-star running back out of North Carolina, on Monday. The next day, Josh Love, a quarterback out of Long Beach (Calif.) Poly, will be in town.

Then the fun really begins, when West Virginia puts on the first of several camps to be held over the next two months, beginning on June 8.

These camps are usually a mixed bag of players ranging from not-going-to-start-in-high-school to Division II talent to top-end BCS recruits. Those more highly regarded players are usually younger, and this is when they earn their offer from the coaching staff.

For instance, two summers ago, Ricky Rogers was a moderately recruited sophomore wideout hoping for an offer. He dominated at camp, immediately received an offer and committed a few months later, becoming the first member of the 2014 class and an early enrollee this spring.

For recruits who are seniors to be and already hold an offer, they take part in camp solely to see how their potential position coach is in a coaching situation. A lot of times they don’t participate at all and just take in the sights and sounds of Milan Puskar Stadium and the surrounding facilities.

This summer is expected to be much of the same in Morgantown, as many to prospects from around the country are expected in at some point and in a variety of manners.

Already scheduled for the first weekend of camps are All-American safety Kareem Ali out of Timber Creek (N.J.), recently offered receiver Gary Jennings from Colonial Forge (Va.) and The Baylor School (Tenn.) quarterback Nick Tiano, among others.

Two weeks later, for the team camp, perennial powerhouse DeMatha Catholic (Md.) is expected. That school produces more BCS talent annually than several states, and should have with them 2016 superstars JP Urquidez and Shane Simmons, two four-star prospects with WVU offers.

The individual camp at the end of July should keep the stargazers happy, too. While a little too far off to have a solid list of visitors, this is typically the camp where the coaching staff attempts to gather many of the current commitments, as well as some of the top remaining targets. Last year’s group was a virtual who’s who of Mountaineer recruiting in 2014, and this year should be no different.

Once again, while others take off and enjoy the summer months, this coaching staff will be working tirelessly to help secure as much talent as possible to further solidify the future of the program.

Chris Anderson is a full-time writer for eersports.com.

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