Drayton Carlberg said his visit to Michigan State was 'amazing.' (Scout.com)
Drayton Carlberg of Minneapolis De La Salle flew to Michigan this week to visit Michigan State. It was an unofficial visit, so the student-athlete and his family were responsible for the costs incurred on the trip, but it proved to be worth the time and money as the Spartans offered Carlberg.
The Spartans only have one player on their roster from Minnesota, junior wide receiver A.J. Troup, but they are hoping to add a second in Carlberg, a 6-foot-6, 280-pound offensive tackle.
“I texted him and he texted back: ‘I loved it, amazing,’” De La Salle head coach Sean McMenomy said. “Coach (Brad) Salem comes around here and their staff is a group of good guys who teach and coach great football. Drayton mentioned that he loved the family atmosphere there. Coach Dantonio came off as a father figure.”
Carlberg began receiving offers late in the fall with Pittsburgh and Rutgers among the first schools to offer. From there he has steadily added others. Iowa State and Vanderbilt were two of the most recent, along with the Spartans.
More could be on the way as the spring evaluation period continues and McMenomy continues to receive positive feedback from college coaches.
“His size, matched up with agility and speed, is seldom seen,” McMenomy said. “He runs like a running back and he’s 6-6, 280-something right now and his flexibility is ridiculous, his footwork is great. That’s what a lot of schools are saying -- they can’t believe how athletic he is and how well he moves for a guy his size.”
Outside of football, Carlberg is one of the unquestioned leaders on his team and at his school. McMenomy says he is a coach’s dream.
“I would put him as one of the best examples of what you would hope for in football player,” McMenomy said. “He’s a great leader on and off the field, in the classroom, and he’s not afraid to make enemies as long as it’s for the right cause. If people are dogging it, he’s going to speak his mind. By the same token, there is not one ounce of big-time in him. He will talk to the football guys but also be at the table talking math and science with kids who are in the play. He’s welcomed by all.”
Last Sunday, McMenomy met with several of his rising seniors who are looking to play beyond high school to talk about recruiting. One of the topics for Carlberg and his family was when he would make a commitment.
“He and his parents want to get it done before the season starts just to not have it hanging over their head,” McMenomy said. “Dray is modeled after his parents and they’re great people, good blue-collar people who believe in hard work. They’re going to do it right.”
Spring game visitors
Thirteen players with scholarship offers from Michigan State will attend Saturday’s spring game. The in-state group includes Tyriq Thompson, Brian Cole, John Kelly, Josh Alabi and Mike Weber, all considered among the top players in Michigan.
St. Paul (Minn.) Cretin Derham Hall defensive end Jashon Cornell and Columbia (Mo.) Rock Bridge wide receiver Alex Ofodile both have extensive offer lists and are considered among the best in the country, as is Hubbard (Ohio) running back Larry Scott, who has already visited the Spartans.
Allen Trieu began covering the state of Michigan for Scout.com in 2005 and began managing the entire Midwest in 2009. He has been featured on the Big Ten Network on its annual Signing Day Show. His Michigan State recruiting column appears weekly at detroitnews.com. For more on MSU recruiting, visit michiganstate.scout.com.