2015 NDSU Football Recruiting Biggest Wins
I’m just going to come out and say it, the 2015 football class for NDSU is the schools best ever……….. on paper. Time will tell what they can achieve if they buy into the Bison tradition. But one thing is clear, this staff absolutely knocked it out of the park by winning some battles that have never been won before by NDSU. They went to some new territories and beat FBS schools all while cleaning up many of the top players in Minnesota. So let’s take a look at some of the biggest wins for this class.
*Disclaimer-Anything can happen in the next 24-48 hours but I fully expect each of these players to sign with NDSU
Ellefson, the tight end from Hawley, Minnesota has picked NDSU over 3 FBS offers in Air Force, New Mexico and Wyoming. Former coach NDSU Brent Vigen built a strong relationship with Ellefson, so when he picked NDSU over Vigen’s new school (Wyoming) it was a big win.
I’d like to announce that I became an NDSU Bison today. Big thanks to God for blessing me and to my family for always being there. #gobison
— Ben Ellefson (@Ben_Ellefson14) July 11, 2014
Ellefson’s verbal led to a rush on NDSU scooping up talent from the land of 10,000 lakes.
Ben Ellefson’s verbal might be the domino that starts a rush of verbals 4 NDSU Look for coaches to turn up the heat on some ND and MN offers — BISONATION.info (@BISONATION) July 11, 2014
If beating Wyoming isn’t a big enough deal for you, later in the year Ellefson reported an offer from Purdue.
— Kyle Goblirsch (@Gobie247) November 14, 2014
Yeah that Purdue……from the Big Ten. But all indications point to Ellefson signing Wednesday and he sounds just as excited about this class as NDSU fans are.
NDSU prides itself on the run game and has for years. The key to this run game is the Rams. Rams is the nickname for NDSU’s offensive line and has been since the late 70’s when Sam Neis (my father) was the O-Line coach under Jim Wacker. Many scouts say evaluating offensive lineman is the toughest position. So who am I to say that Mooney has a chance to be special? I spent a good week in late May scouring recruiting sites looking for potential offensive lineman and when I saw Mooney’s tape I was impressed. Coaches agreed as they went to a small town in southwest Missouri for an offensive lineman. Comparing his junior tape to others I thought there was no way NDSU had a chance at this athletic 6’5″ lineman who planned to play tight end his senior year. Well I was wrong and Mooney verballed to NDSU
Well I have decided to go to NDSU to further my education and to play football. #BisoNation
— Trenton Mooney (@mooney4444) December 21, 2014
Mooney picked NDSU over other MVFC teams like Southern Illinois, Missouri St and Western Illinois along with other FCS schools like Central Arkansas, Northern Colorado and Coastal Carolina. Those are some impressive schools to beat, but Mooney also picked up a PWO offer from Oregon and picked NDSU over FBS schools like Army, Air Force, New Mexico and Wyoming (Edit I forgot UNLV also). NDSU unoffically won 5 battles and lost 3 to Craig Bohl’s staff at Wyoming. Mooney was by far the biggest surprise, especially after hearing Wyoming offered cost of tuition.
Bison verbal Trenton Mooney tells Kolpack&Izzo Wyoming offered him cost of attendance of $3,500, further proof NDSU will look at it hard.
— Jeff Kolpack (@FGOSPORTSWRITER) January 24, 2015
Mercadel’s measurables don’t jump out at you being he is listed as a 6′ 185 lb linebacker, but his tape shows he likes to tackle and tackle people with a mean streak. Mercadel was a big get for NDSU defensive end coach Jamar Cain who is from Northern California. It showed he could go to his old stomping grounds and win a recruiting battle against the FBS. Why is that important? Because it has never happened before! NDSU has never beat a FBS school for a California recruit.
Mercadel picked NDSU over Montana plus FBS schools Air Force and Wyoming. Mercadel also took an unofficial visit to Laramie in July
— Aaron Mercadel III (@YoungMerk33) July 16, 2014
If a player like Bruce Anderson were to picked NDSU over FBS schools in any of the past classes, there would be more excitement. In this class, he almost feels like an after thought to some fans. History will be made when Anderson signs with NDSU as he will be the first player from the state of Florida to picked NDSU over a FBS offer. He didn’t just have one FBS offer, he had offers from all 3 military schools and MAC member Kent State. Hats off to Atif Austin the WR coach and Florida recruiter who did what AJ Cooper was not able to do in 3 years recruiting the state.
— Bruce Anderson III (@Young_Brucee) January 23, 2015
NDSU had some bad luck and recruiting losses the last 4 years at running back, this year was not the case. Anderson has a chance to bring some explosion to the NDSU offense and will be one to keep an eye on. He isn’t the only running back expected to sign and maybe that’s why some don’t mention Anderson as one of their favorite recruiting wins.
Purifoy has been high on NDSU’s coaches staff since they did junior day evaluations last year and was a top priority for offensive coordinator/RB coach and Wisconsin recruiter Tim Polasek. Purifoy had offers from conference foes: UNI, SIU, SDSU and Illinois State plus FBS offers against (stop me if I am repeating myself) New Mexico and Wyoming. To go into Milwaukee and get an athletic 6’2″ running back to pick Fargo over FBS offers is flat out amazing.
— Mark Stewart (@MarkStewartMJS) December 21, 2014
Those are just 5 of many big wins. Getting Bryan Carlton (Illinois State, UNI, SDSU) and Jaxon Brown (Air Force, Army) to pick NDSU over a PWO offer from Minnesota is big. Getting Minnesota’s Mr Football Robbie Grimsley to pick NDSU over Air Force and other FCS offers is huge. Montana tried to come into the Twin Cities this year offering Braden Sikes, Marquise Bridges and Jack Darnell, but NDSU swept those battles. Going into a St Louis suberb and get Dominic Davis to pick NDSU over Mountain West team New Mexico shows how versatile Coach Cain is at recruiting a new territory. Defensive lineman Cole Karcz (Air Force) and Connor Hubbs (Wyoming) are very important wins for the staff. Not to be overlooked is going into Iowa and beating UNI for linebacker Jake Brinkman.
So I repeat; The 2015 football class for NDSU is the schools best ever…………….. on paper
Only these young men of the 2015 class will decide with hard work and dedication, on and off the field, if they can do what they hope to achieve at NDSU. Get a degree, become a man and win championships-THE BISON WAY