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Jamil Pollard chooses Rutgers over Penn State

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As could have been expected, Silas Redd's departure to USC has opened up the floodgates at Penn State. Khairi Fortt has left for Cal, Kevin Haplea is now a Seminole, Robert Bolden is going to LSU, and some safety you've never heard of went to NC State. This is on the heels of Ryan Nowicki leaving, and rumors about freshman OL Brian Gaia, RB Akeel Lynch, K Anthony Fera, and LB Mike Hull. The cracks are starting to show, and frankly, this may only be the beginning. For now, Rutgers will have to be satisfied with DT Jamil Pollard. This is interesting in the sense that he reportedly had qualifying issues as a recruit, which is why I initially didn't see him as a realistic possibility. He made it through the clearing house into Penn State though, and once the sanctions hit, high-tailed it out of there at the first opportunity. This is a fun little bit of payback for years of Penn State bullying. Let it be the first of many. So, how will this affect the roster moving forward? You'd think Jamil ends up on defense, given that Rutgers just signed a ton of offensive linemen and all. Last year's class did have two DE/DT tweeners in Pinnix and Hammer. Traditionally those guys would have grown into DTs at Rutgers, but who knows, maybe this is part of the new trend with big tackles like Al Page and Marquise Wright. DTs bust pretty often, so that has to curb any premature celebration somewhat, but that is precisely why these recruits are worth their weight in gold. If we are actually going to run a defense that uses big tackles now, well then, that's even more for the better.

Recruiting sleeper parade continues

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Recruiting critics have been abuzz since one of Kemoko Turay's assistant coaches recently tweeted that he had received an offer from the Rutgers staff. He was a star at a recent on-campus camp, but hasn't played organized football the past few years. Yep, it's another super-athletic sleeper lottery ticket that not many recruiting gurus are familiar with - a label that could apply to a good percentage of this year's recruiting class. Note: any comment comparisons of Turay to Jason Pierre-Paul or Jevon Kearse are bannable.

Josh Klecko makes it three on the day

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Not many fans are thrilled about the amount of sleepers Rutgers is signing in this year's football class, but for Josh Klecko, they might make an exception. His father, of course, starred for the Jets in the early 80s, but Rutgers has signed other players in the past with NFL bloodlines. More relevant is his brother Dan's experience at Temple. Terry Shea infamously spurned Dan Klecko by not offering him a scholarship, and Klecko proceeded to develop into an All American-caliber player for the Owls. He was undersized, but holy crap was Dan good, and it seemed like he took extra relish in torturing Rutgers each year to make up for Shea's unforgivable sin. Rutgers could not afford to make that mistake again.

Myles Nash to Rutgers

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Wait, so Rutgers actually signed a player from Timber Creek? Yeah, I know, Quanzilla last year, but Greg Webb was always looking factory, and Dajuan Drennon''s interest quickly faded. In terms of offers, Nash is probably the best get of the class up to this point. Looks like one of those classic LB who grows into an undersized R end types.

TE Taylor Marini to Rutgers

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In the first of the day's three commitments as recruiting camp winds down, Rutgers received a verbal from Florida tight end Taylor Marini. Tight end was a big need for this class with Rutgers losing a player at the last minute last year. They needed two, and now they have them in Nick Arch and Marini. Marini has a solid offer list, and is exactly the kind of heralded mid-level recruit that Rutgers has made their name with as of late. You can be a little disappointed in some of the sleepers in this class, but not with Marini (or Myles Nash for that matter.) The problem is more that they should be the rule this year, not the exception. Congrats to Jim Panagos for his recruiting prowess today. Rutgers will probably need to land a few prospects out of Florida this year like Marini and LB Skai Moore to make up for missing out on a few local prospects. That's how Greg Schiano did it at the start of his tenure too.

DL Sebastian Joseph commits to Rutgers

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Another week, another mid-level, semi-sleeper commits to the Rutgers football program. This time, it's Pennsylvania DL Sebastian Joseph, who reportedly had interest from some Big East and ACC programs - which fits the mold of a lot of the team's commits this year. Some recruiting gurus are high on Joseph, citing strong camp performances. My thoughts on him are pretty much the same as they are for the rest of the class: each of the commits is overall, fine in a vacuum - I do wish on the whole Rutgers was doing better with some of the more high-profile prospects this season though.

Rutgers gets another Arcidiacono

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Brandon Arcidiacono is coming to Rutgers this fall as a center, and as of today, his younger brother Nick will be joining him in a year as a tight end. As Rutgers did not sign a tight end in last year's class, they could well be looking to sign two this year, so stay tuned on that front. Also worth watching is the possibility that there could be more Arcidiaconos coming down the pike in the future. Look out DePaolas, they're going to make a run for being the first family of Rutgers football.

Eric Wiafe to Rutgers

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Timing can be interesting at times. Rutgers saw a top-ranked local player go off the board today with Immaculata (why does RU never seem to get their players when the school is so close by) DT Tashawn Bower committed to Auburn. That may have been behind the decision to offer Eric Wiafe, but other reports cite his standout performance at a local big man camp. That's fine. What's a little unnerving though are Wiafe's comments about being a "medium" verbal commit and still wanting to take visits. Dude. This is your first decent offer. If you want to wait, then wait. Committing in name only just to hold a spot might as well be no commitment at all. Come on, get serious man. This is why I can't really get on any player who seems to be dragging the decision process out. Some people just need to be sure, and while it's frustrating, that's certainly their right. Something like this is definitely higher on the irksome scale. Still, Rutgers saw fit to jump on Wiafe almost immediately, so I hope things work out and he can grow into his potential. Besides the odd comments, some fans certainly will be upset about missing out on another big local target. Rutgers is definitely doing well with the mid-level guys who are the bread and butter of the program every year, but RU has struggled with most top local prospects (there are still a few good ones left who are possibilities if not likely to Rutgers), which is understandable given the results of the past few months. Rutgers needs to win under Kyle Flood, and that will work itself out in time, but it's definitely an issue until the program can demonstrate some stability again. Getting to the point of the past few years where Rutgers turned into a destination for elite prospects did not happen over night.

T.J. Taylor commits to Rutgers

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Let's face it: if there's a top football prospect out there in Middlesex or Somerset Counties, it's not news if he commits to Rutgers. It's news if Rutgers does not land those players. That being said, T.J. Taylor looks like a good get as a safety who may grow into a linebacker in time. You can't control when players are ready to commit obviously, but Rutgers has a lot of multi-positional athlete types now, and you'd really like to see a few more linemen commits start trickling in. Yeah, they got more than their fill last year, but you can never really have enough capable bodies on both sides of the ball. Finding a QB would be pretty big too.

Tsimis Makes It Two Commits for the Day

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Best known for burning Rivals Top 50 Cornerback Yuri Wright, John Tsimis has joined today's commit Brick Ayres as the fourth member of the RU 2013 recruiting class. The knock on him was that he didn't have elite speed and was, at best, a possession receiver. The Bengals, I hear, are pretty happy with a guy named Mo Sanu. Tsimis is a flat out baller. Welcome to the Banks.

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