Trieu: Thomas, Peoples-Jones high on MSU ’17 wish list
With Signing Day completed, we take a closer look at Michigan State’s class of 2017 recruiting. Recruiting for this class will receive more attention from MSU fans now, but it is a group the Spartans have been working on for months, and in some cases years, already. Here are some of the names to know:
CB Ambry Thomas, Detroit King: Thomas has the speed and playmaking skills to play on either side of the ball in college. That explosiveness is rare and what makes him a special prospect. The usual suspects – Ohio State, Notre Dame, Michigan, along with Tennessee, Wisconsin and others – have offered. He has been to Michigan State for quite a few visits and having three former King players on the roster won’t hurt the Spartans’ chances.
WR Donovan Peoples-Jones, Detroit Cass Tech: The state’s top prospect, Peoples-Jones is a fast and ultra-athletic target. He is also close friends with Spartan signee Demetric Vance and has already been to campus on a number of occasions. Ohio State, Florida, Tennessee, Notre Dame, Michigan and others are the competition.
CB Amir Riep, Cincinnati Colerain: The Spartans offered this long, athletic cover corner in October. He has since received an offer from Ohio State and this may turn into a Spartan-Buckeye battle, but Tennessee also has his attention. He will be returning to the Michigan State campus soon, another chance for the Spartans to make an impression after he had a good fall visit.
DE Jacub Panasiuk, Roselle (Ill.) Lake Park: The younger brother of Spartan 2016 signee Mike Panasiuk, Jacub came into his own as a junior and had a big season while growing into his 6-foot-4, 250 pound frame. He has a handful of other offers and more are likely to come, but MSU will be a tough team to beat.
WR K.J. Hamler, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s: Michigan State was the first school to offer the explosive, sure-handed playmaker. While competition has come in from West Virginia, Michigan and others, the Spartans are high on his list.
CB Jamyest Williams, Lawrenceville (Ga.) Archer: The Spartan class may have some Georgia flavor to it in 2017 as Williams has an offer, has been to campus and says MSU is in high consideration, and Peach State quarterbacks Davis Mills and Bailey Hockman are also looking hard at MSU. Williams, an aggressive, confident cover man, would be a great addition to the No Fly Zone.
Sophomores set to see MSU
The Spartans will host three of the Midwest’s top sophomore prospects for a basketball game on Feb. 14. Cedar Rapids (Iowa) Washington offensive lineman Andrew Todd (6-4, 265 pounds) has an Iowa State offer already and will be in town. Gibraltar Carlson’s two athletic 6-foot-5 sophomores, quarterback Jaylen Franklin and tight end Matt Harmon, will visit. The Spartans signed Kodi Kieler from Carlson and are among the early schools recruiting both Franklin and Harmon, who head coach Kent Sikora says will be highly-recruited prospects.
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 and Michigan State recruiting columns appear weekly at detroitnews.com.