Trieu: Underrated RB Abdul Adams wowed by MSU offer

By Allen Trieu, special to The Detroit News
Abdul Adams was impressed by the MSU campus during his visit.

On a weekend full of seniors taking official visits to Michigan State, it was actually a junior prospect with whom the Spartans may have made the most progress.

Abdul Adams, a standout running back from Wilson High in Washington, D.C., left East Lansing with a Spartan offer, and although he is already committed to East Carolina, his weekend experience with Michigan State left a huge mark.

"He was blown away," Adams' coach and trainer Sean Washington said. "He went up there and heard they were interested, but he was totally blown away (by the offer). I was blown away, but I knew he was deserving of it and he was on that level, but it was surprising for him. It was quiet (after the offer) and I said, 'What do you think?' He said, 'I just didn't think it was coming.'"

Washington, who has been working with Adams since before his freshman year, has felt his star pupil has been under-recruited throughout the early part of his process. At the time of his commitment to ECU, the Pirates were his only offer. Since then, not only Michigan State, but Illinois and Indiana have offered.

This visit represented the only other program he has visited this year besides ECU.

"That was big, Michigan State, at that time being the No. 8 team in the country," Washington said. "The campus was on another level. He visited ECU and the campuses aren't the same. It was another level of football, and he knows I love weight rooms and all the equipment, and when he saw that and the whole nine it was a done deal. He was like, 'Yo, this is it.'"

With that type of a review, it is clear the Spartans are in great shape, but Adams is in no hurry to make any further declarations, and Washington is fully on-board with that plan.

"I told him to just focus on the season, but they're at the top of the list," he said. "I don't want ECU to be mad at him, but I assure you (MSU) is at the top of the list. I did tell him to take his time accepting it, but most definitely, there's no question Michigan State is at the top."

Whether he sticks with East Carolina, switches to Michigan State, or another program swoops in, Washington is confident that no matter who ends up landing Adams is getting the complete package.

"We work out in the weight room and watch film and he's just as good as other backs, and I don't understand what it is that keeps him from getting more offers," Washington said. "He's a good kid, a hard worker who is going to try his best on the field and in the weight room. He loves to work, so that's not a problem.

"Football wise, he's a big, dynamic back. He's explosive, but also dynamic. He can shake and bake and he can run over you or make you miss, but if he has the opportunity, he's going to go for that make-you-miss. Beyond that, he's a good kid. I don't have to worry about him being around the wrong crowd. I've trained him for two and a half years and we've never had any issues at all. He's a very good kid."

Visit moves Jones closer to decision

After last weekend's official visit to Michigan State, Lakeland (Fla.) Lake Gibson defensive end Reuben Jones told's Amy Campbell that he is approaching a decision.

"Nebraska and Michigan State both look really good," Campbell said. "He may still take an official to West Virginia, but he may make a decision before that happens."

Jones, a 6-foot-3, 230-pound senior, had not been to East Lansing before, but the atmosphere of the game and his time spent with the staff has left the Spartans in great position.

"I had been talking to coach (Harlon) Barnett for awhile, the secondary coach," he said. "I didn't really have much of a relationship with the defensive line coach (Ron Burton) or the defensive coordinator (Pat Narduzzi) or the head coach (Mark Dantonio), but I really liked the head coach, coach Dantonio, he was super cool.

"They said they wanted somebody that can get some speed on the pass rush, so I'd be that type of end."

Spartans continue to impress 2016 QB

Rochester (N.Y.) Aquinas Institute quarterback Jake Zembiec returned to East Lansing after being offered by Michigan State in the summer. A big, 6-foot-3, 205-pound passer, Zembiec says it's the Spartans and Penn State who top his list. He may see the Nittany Lions play MSU in Happy Valley at the end of the month, according to Spartan Digest's Mike Wilson.

"I loved being around that kind of environment, having played football for so long," he said of the game experience. "In a game where I'm playing, I don't get to feel the feeling in the stands. It was awesome, especially in a game like that around all the fans."

More information

Abdul Adams profile

Reuben Jones profile

Jake Zembiec profile

Allen Trieu began covering the state of Michigan for 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 and Michigan State recruiting columns appear weekly at