The busy days leading up to National Signing Day continue to be productive for Rutgers, as Chris Ash added another name to his recruiting class when St. Peter's Prep athlete K.J. Gray committed to the Scarlet Knights.
Gray, a three-star prospect according to 247Sports, first visited Rutgers during the Scarlet Knights' spring game last April. In June, he attended a camp at Rutgers. Despite his apparent interest in the Scarlet Knights, he announced he had committed to Boston College on June 28, just days after the Rutgers camp. Still, Rutgers remained involved with the talented two-way player, and he returned to Piscataway for an unofficial visit during the Rutgers-Ohio State game last October.
On December 21, Gray announced that he had decommitted from Boston College and was reopening his recruitment. While Rutgers originally recruited him during Kyle Flood's tenure as head coach, Flood's replacement Chris Ash and his staff remained interested in Gray. Defensive backs coach Bill Busch made an in-home visit with Gray last Monday, and Gray made his way to the banks over the weekend for an official visit.
Along with Rutgers and Boston College, Gray held offers from Iowa, Syracuse, UConn, Army, UMass, and Buffalo.
Gray is the 14th member of Rutgers' recruiting class, and the third brought aboard by Ash, following Elorm Lumor and Korab Idrizi.
I took a look at Gray's film, and I was very impressed with his ability to work the sideline on offense. He excels at making catches and using the sideline to his advantage, turning on the jets to gain big chunks of yardage at a time. That skill also makes him a valuable red zone threat who excels at hauling in the corner fade. He also has a knack for beating defenders in one-on-one coverage, and is able to haul in a pass facing even the tightest coverage.
Still, with three wide receivers already committed in the 2016 recruiting class and several with in-game experience already on the roster, Gray's best shot at playing time as a freshman might come on defense, where he impressed as a cornerback for the Marauders of St. Peter's Prep. He has the size (6-2, 189) to do battle with opposing receivers at the next level. His hands and speed are also a strengths, as he has potential to break off a big return after an interception. A hard hitter, Gray also plays with an aggressive edge which, as long as it's kept in check, appears to be a good fit for Ash and defensive coordinator Jay Niemann's defense.
A fast, sure-handed, gutsy two-way player, Gray appears to be an excellent addition by Ash and his staff this late in the process.
Welcome to the banks, K.J.!