Dave Hooker on ESPN wrote an article this weekend on two local football stars, Derwin Gray and Yannick Ngakoue (god imagine saying that every saturday). Link here.
For those without insider access, it pretty much sums up their relationship since the both transferred to Friendship Academy this year. They've become very close since becoming teammates, to the point where people believe they are a 50/50 shot to commit to play together, while Ngakoue gives it a 8 out of 10 chance that they do. Of course, he finishes with "At the end of the day he'll commit where he wants to play and I will commit where I want to play" to leave it wide open.
More after the break..
Gray has some questions academically, but Friendships coach believes that now he is at Friendship he won't have problems qualifying. Gray is a 6'5, 295lb OT who is rated a consensus 4 stars on all sites. He has taken unofficial visits to Tennessee and Auburn already, and loved both.
Ngakoue is a 6'2, 225lb OLB who is one of the best in the nation. When mentioning MD, it appears that he likes MD but wants to see significant improvements on the field this year (don't we all). FWIW, he appears destined for a 3-4 system, as he is afraid that going to a 4-3 system would mean a permanent move to DE. He wants to stay playing at OLB, so we have that going for us.
My opinion? I'm not sure we have much of a chance with Ngakoue. He also mentions that playing time as a true freshman is important to him, he doesn't want to redshirt (that prob eliminates a lot of SEC schools). He obviously has the advantage of being the top OLB in the nation, but he is looking for thin depth charts. I have differing opinions on that, as I feel that if you're good enough your play should put you at the top of that chart anyways.
We have a much better chance with Gray I think. He hasn't mentioned that the Terps play has deterred him in recruiting, which is good. The X Factor is Locksley and his relationship with Friendships coach. Friendships coach has publicly stated now that Locksley is at MD, his players will always consider them. Here is to hoping for that to pull through here, landing one, if not both, of these players would be huge for the 2013 class.