Like the Ivy League, the Patriot League recruits nationally, due to their requirements for high academics. There are a lot of football athletes out there, but not a lot of them can boast 3.85 GPAs and high board scores. While Patriot League schools can and do tap players from the local area, in recent years they've gone all over the United States to find the type of student-athlete that fits the bill. It's sometimes hard to think of an eastern Pennsylvania school with senior QB J.B. Clark (Florida native) passing to sophomore WR James Flynn (California native), but that's the reality of today's Patriot League. It's an international and intra-national school.
With the Any Given Saturday message board down for the forseeable future, and my troubles getting the Lehigh Sports Forum back online, I had to actually work to get information about six recruits this week. Without (much) help from message board legend RichH, here's my analysis of six recruits that have Lehigh on their radar screens. (More)
- Let's start with the big guy whose picture is in the leader. From Nease High school in Florida comes OL Devin Cochrane, a 6'2 285 lb monster that many Ivy League or Patriot League school would crave. Listed on Nease's prospect page, he lists Colgate, Holy Cross, Bucknell, Lafayette and Lehigh as potential schools - but also Penn, as well as an offer from Yale. Cochrane helped pave the way for passing QB Tyler Weir to throw over 4,100 yards and 43 TDs as a member of the Panthers. (Weir is a pretty hot recruiting commodity himself, with William & Mary, Furman and Towson recruiting him - and another former Lehigh head coach, Pete Lembo, also interested in him at Elon. Of course, coming from the same Florida high school that gave us Tim Tebow, you'd expect some interest, eh?)
- From Florida to California. S Trevor Weis out of Tesoro High School lists Cal Poly, Cornell, Dartmouth and Lehigh as schools of interest on his Scout.com profile. As a senior, in 10 games for the Titans he had 74 tackles, 1 sack, 1 interception, and 8 passes defensed. He ran a 4.7 40 yard dash as well, according to Scout. From his school's prospect page, he seems to be strong as well (bench pressing 300 lbs). Impressive numbers - as were his junior year's, where he had 4 interceptions.
- Still in California, Lehigh is listed on the Scout.com page as well of S Nick Okano out of Harvard-Westlake. Lehigh has made an offer: trouble is, so has most of the Ivy League, Colgate, Georgetown, two service academies, and (for good measure) Cal Poly, Portland State, Northern Arizona and North Dakota. There's no doubt he'd have a chance to step right in where senior DB/KR John "Prez" Kennedy would leave off after the 2010 season- Okano had 12 career interceptions and over 189 career tackles for his team, as well as an average of 23 yards per kickoff return and 10 yards per punt return.
- From California to "deep in the heart of Texas". From Rowlett, TX, WR Will Beasley lists Lehigh, Columbia, Lafayette and Georgetown - as well as FBS Southern Methodist and Air Force - on his Rivals profile. A member of the all District 4A-10 football team, he concentrated on wideout as a senior to the tune of 746 yards and 4 TDs - and a 5th on a 48 yard end-around. As a junior, he returned kicks so there is the potential for him to do that at Lehigh, too. Gotta like stories like this courtesy of Next Level: "On second and seven, Beasley broke free on a seam rout (sic) from the slot position and despite a desperate attempt by the Rowlett defender to contain him, pulled in a 35 yard one handed grab with the defender hanging off of his body. This was the 'Play of the Game!'"
- Closer to home - specifically, Marlton, New Jersey at Cherokee High School - comes potential prospect RB Sean Farrell. Listing Holy Cross, Penn and Lehigh as his potential destinations on Rivals, the 6'3, 230 lb back certainly is not a prototypical undersized scatback by any reach of the imagination - but he certainly has produced like one, with 1,070 yards and 21 TDs for the Chiefs last year. Sound good? Even better is this writeup on Farrell by the South Jersey Courier-Post Online. "Ask any coach who’s had to game plan against Farrell and they all pretty much same the same thing – slow him down early. “You better stop him before he gets his shoulders square,’’ Pennsauken’s Clinton Tabb said. “He’s a bull to bring down. When he gets going, it takes more than one guy to bring him down. And if he does get going, you’re in trouble.’’" Sounds awfully intriguing - the question is, would you play him at RB or FB?
- Finally - word out of Ohio of another recruit, LB Pat Behm, getting an offer from Lehigh to go with his offers from non-scholarship Dayton, Butler and an array of sub-D-I schools. The 6-3, 190-pound senior defensive end was Division II Northeast Lakes co-Defensive Player of the Year, and was a monster in the middle - one game, he racked up 20 tackles in a 20-13 loss.As if that and his presence on the all-Academic team were not enough, his profile on his school website says a bit more: "I like to spend my time hanging out with friends, sleeping and looking for UFO's with my main man Abourjeily." I don't know about you, but I think Lehigh needs more kids that look for UFOs AND have Abourjeily as their main man, don't you?