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[2023] BSU Recruiting Update

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With the Recruiting Cycle coming quickly to a close, we're going to take some time to update our readers on where the class stands.

Players we've already written about:

DT Josh Kern (Brooksville, FL) 1.0 of 4.0 [2-Gap]

OG Kieran Edmondson (Tampa, FL) 1.0 of 4.5 [Pass Blocking]

OLB Logan Christopher (Baytown, TX) 1.0 of 3.5 [Blitz]

DE Seneca Norwood (Bowman, SC) 1.0 of 3.5 [Contain]

TE Nathaniel Urban (Port St. Lucie, FL) 1.0 of 3.5 [Blocking]

RB Nick Carson (Napoleon, MI) 1.0 of 4.0 [Speed]


Players who have committed since our last update:


QB Jim Stiles (Austin, TX) 1.0 of 3.5 [Pocket]


Stiles is a prototypical Quarterback prospect, standing 6-5, he's a guy who loves to sit in the pocket and dish the ball out. He's not going to scramble much, if ever. With Erik Parker being the guy going forward, we don't see Stiles getting much playing time. He'll likely red-shirt year one, and then sit behind Parker for two years until he'll have a chance to compete for a starting job in his Junior Year (2027).


RB Jaeden English (Bellevue, MI) 1.0 of 3.0 [Power]


With the commitment of Nick Carson, the future at RB has been settled. But, that doesn't mean the Cards don't need depth. English is he polar opposite of Carson, he's purely North-South, and he's going to being some pain with him when he hits you. English probably won't see much action early in his career, but should develop into a nice counter punch to Carson later down the road.


OLB Michael Dowd (Lewistown, OH) 1.0 of 3.0 [Blitz]


At 6-2, 239 Pounds, Dowd is a bruiser. Where Logan Christopher is more a Speed Rusher, Dowd is much more physical. He commands attention from the Tackle and opens up opportunities for others. We don't expect Dowd to see the field much, he may be a career Special Teams Specialist.


FB Sila Faanofonof Atua (Tampa, FL) 3.0 of 4.0 [Run Blocking]


One of the most polished players in the class, Sila Atua will certainly compete for a starting job year one. He will compete with Eddie Briggs next year, and it will be interesting to see who wins that battle. The Cards offensive scheme does rely on the FB to open up holes for Damani Laws, so this is not a throwaway position. He's short, at 5-9, but weighs 226 Pounds. He delivers punishment with his blocks, and he will become a great partner for Nick Carson.


FS Golden Fountain (Wesley Chapel, FL) 1.0 of 4.0 [Man Coverage]


Junior Geno Atkins will graduate next year, leaving a noticeable hole in the defense, and we expect Fountain to fill that hole. He's a tall, lanky kid who excels in man coverage. Opening up the rest of the defense for a more aggressive approach. Defensive Coaching Staff are excited to get him involved.


OT Alex Burroughs (Mattoon, IL) 4.0 of 4.5 [Run Blocking]


Burroughs comes to Ball State as a Transfer from Junior College Lake Land College. Ball State has done quite a bit the last two seasons building up the Offensive Line, and Burroughs is just the next piece in that plan. He'll be a Junior in 2024, so he'll only be a 2-Year Starter, but getting more talent on the OL is a major goal from this Coaching Staff.


Thoughts from Coach npklemm:


"Jim Stiles is a guy who can plain sling the ball, he'll be a great backup to Parker and then will have every opportunity to win the job eventually. Jaeden brings us much needed versatility in the backfield, while Nick Carson will be running away from everybody, Jaeden will be running them over. Michael is great kid, and we're going to utilize his talents on Special Teams early on. Very excited for Sila, he's a mauler in the run game. And that's what we love to do, he, Nick and Erik will become very good friends. Golden Fountain is an aggressive guy in the back of the defense. He reads offenses very well and jumps routes/passes super well. We're really excited for him. Alex Burroughs is huge for us. We've built up the interior of the line, now we need to build up the exterior, and Alex does just that. He'll be a great player for us next year".


Other Players Who Are Still Considering Ball State:


OG Robaire Epps (Falcon, CO) 2.5 of 3.0 [Run Blocking]


Robaire would be a depth signing for the Cards, who have notoriously been shallow at Guard over the years. He likely won't start if he commits to the Cards, but he's still an important guy to bring in. He's also considering Wyoming, but lists Ball State as his favorite right now.


DE Frederick Deaton (Morrow, OH) 1.0 of 3.0 [Contain]


Deaton may not see the field much in his time in Muncie if he chooses the Cards, but he's a big guy and would be a great backup. He's also considering Bowling Green and Youngstown State, but BSU is his clear favorite.


DT Shaq Oliver (Cincinnati, OH) 1.0 of 3.0 [2-Gap]


The Cards play a 3-4 Scheme, and with the commitment of Josh Kern, there won't be much opportunity for Oliver. But just like Epps and Deaton, depth is super important. He's also considering Toledo, but lists BSU as his favorite. Should be noted that Toledo has hit their Commit Threshold and cannot sign any other players.


FB Makani Tagata (Tucker, GA) 1.5 of 3.0 [Pass Blocking]


Another depth player, the Cards don't actually lead on him. He's favoring in-state rival, Indiana. He'd be a nice addition to the team, but it's hard to see him being an important enough signing to warrant more attention from the Cards.


TE Darnerien Randolph (Azle, TX) 1.0 of 3.0 [Receiving]


TE's are very versatile players. They can be used in many different situations, so having plenty of depth there is important to team success. Randolphs favors the Cards, but is also considering UTEP and Northern Iowa.


P Thomas Hoff (Brooksville, FL) 1.0 of 3.5 [Accuracy]


Since McHenry graduated, Ball State has struggled to punt the ball. This year is no different. Thomas Hoff would be a surefire upgrade at the position. He lists BSU first, but has Florida A&M and UCONN on his list as well.


OT Nathan Smalley (Boca Raton, FL) 1.0 of 3.0 [Run Blocking]


Smalley is a force on the outside, and the Cards certainly need depth along the line. He favors the Cards, but is also considering Georgia and UTEP.


OG Will Hackett (Houston, TX) 1.0 of 3.0 [Pass Blocking]


Like Epps, Hackett won't see the field much in his time in Muncie. He's on the shorter side for OL, so is more of power guy. He likes BSU the most, but is also considering UTEP and Montana.


FS Jeremy Saunders (Tampa, FL) 1.5 of 3.0 [Zone Coverage]


Saunders would most likely be a Special Teams guy for most of his career, but could see some limited action on the field at FS. He favors the Cards, and is also considering Florida A&M and Youngstown State.


CB Brian Powell (Bakersfield, CA) 1.0 of 3.0 [Zone Coverage]


The Cards signed a Million Corners a couple years ago, but those guys won't be around forever. Powell will be a depth guy immediately before potentially seeing the field as Nickelback later in his career. He strongly favors the Cards, but also likes Youngstown State and UC Davis.

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Tons of depth and some playmakers. Good class to help continue to build the team up. Getting to a bowl this year was huge 

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Kind of interesting there is not a single Indiana recruit.

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8 minutes ago, inspiral2 said:

Kind of interesting there is not a single Indiana recruit.

Wasn't a ton in state, and I leaned heavily on G5. So I had to go outside.

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4 hours ago, npklemm said:


And how would one pronounce this name?

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1 minute ago, robcarlson77 said:

And how would one pronounce this name?

Notice I didn't spell it out again. 

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