Trieu: Michigan State makes run at Detroit King, Muskegon stars

By Allen Trieu
Special to The Detroit News
Lineman Deondre Buford was one of two Detroit King standouts to receive offers recently from Michigan State.

This contact period in recruiting has seen Michigan State extend new offers across the country, but also four new junior offers in their home state.

Two of them were at Detroit King for running back Peny Boone (6-2, 225 pounds) and offensive tackle Deondre Buford (6-5, 265 pounds).

“It means everything,” Crusaders head coach Tyrone Spencer said. “In-state is very important to us. First of all the schools are right there, and in Detroit if you don’t want to go far, those opportunities are there for us, and those schools are great schools with great education.”

Spencer said Boone was “pumped” about his Michigan State offer on the heels of an offer from Michigan. A transfer from Warren Fitzgerald, Boone saved his best for last as he ended the season on a tear, which included 114 yards and a 52-yard touchdown in the state title game against Muskegon.

“He is a bigger back, so he has the ability to block, but he has great burst in the open field,” Spencer said. “People don’t think he can hit the home run because he is a big back, but he can break it and he did that for us. In the state championship game, he closed the game for us with some first downs at the end. He is running indoor track now and still filling out, so we are expecting big things from him.”

Tennessee, Iowa, Indiana, Nebraska, Purdue and others also have offered Boone.

Buford had a hand in opening lanes for Boone and the other King skill players.

“His work ethic is phenomenal,” Spencer said. “He doesn’t stop working. He is a grounded, humble kid who doesn’t get too high or too low. His potential is unlimited because he is super athletic. I watch him do the L-drill in our football class and how he can run, move and bend. He can still get stronger with his upper body, but he has the potential in him to play after college because he is an athletic, special kid.”

In contrast to Boone’s excitement, Spencer said the very even-tempered Buford was harder to read about his Spartan offer, but the big tackle was excited about the opportunity.

The next step will be getting both back up to East Lansing for a visit. They are looking to do so, but a date has not been set yet. Boone and Buford also will visit schools outside the state as well.

“They have been waiting for this,” Spencer said. “It is hard sometimes they get other offers from schools outside the state, but not those schools (in state), but once it comes, it moves to the front of their minds that now they want me.”

The Spartans currently have one King grad on the roster in linebacker Tyriq Thompson, and one on the staff in player personnel coordinator Butler Benton.

Two offers at Muskegon

In addition to the two offers at King, the Spartans offered two juniors from Muskegon as well in Cameron Martinez and Billie Roberts.

The 5-foot-11, 185-pound Martinez was an all-state performer at quarterback for the Big Reds in the fall, but is being recruited as an athlete who could play slot receiver or safety in college.

Roberts is a 6-foot-4, 240-pound defensive end in the same mold as Damon Knox, a former Big Red who played at Michigan State.

The Spartans have freshman running back La’Darius Jefferson, a former Mr. Football at Muskegon, on their roster.

"It is a great opportunity, and to know that we have had people from Muskegon play for Michigan State and to ask them how their experiences was is amazing," Roberts said.

Both Martinez and Roberts currently are playing basketball, so neither has any football visit plans at the moment.

More information

Peny Boone profile

Deondre Buford profile

Cameron Martinez profile

Billie Roberts profile

Allen Trieu covers Midwest football recruiting for 247Sports. 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