Trieu: 'Top-notch' Michigan State a contender for Ohio cornerback Carrington Valentine
Cincinnati Moeller defensive back Carrington Valentine was part of a big Ohio contingent that visited Michigan State in February and left with an offer from the Spartans.
Valentine has 15 offers, but that visit has helped the Spartans’ position as a top contender on his list.
“I think they are one of the favorites to get him in my view,” 247Sports Ohio analyst Bill Greene said.
Valentine has not named any favorites himself, but has been effusive in his praise of the Spartan program.
"The culture that MSU has going (stands out), and Coach (Mark) Dantonio is an amazing down-to-earth person,” he said. “Coach Dantonio taking the time to meet with my family and I in his office really meant a lot to me. Michigan State is definitely a top-notch program with a wealth of top-notch coaches.”
At February’s Best of the Midwest Combine in Indianapolis, Valentine raised his stock with his testing results as well as how he performed in drills — despite his inexperience at cornerback.
“He had not played corner at all, and they threw him in there last year because they had injuries and Moeller had to put somebody there,” Greene said. “And he was good and he hadn’t trained at all. It was all natural ability. Once he dedicates himself to corner — and he has now — he has a lot of ceiling to go.”
Greene believes Valentine fits the Michigan State mold. Ohio, more specifically southwest Ohio, has been a fruitful recruiting ground for Dantonio during his tenure at Michigan State. Moeller High itself has produced Greg Jones, Marcus Rush and Monty Madaris as notable Spartans. In addition to that, he is the type of big, physical defensive back the Spartans regularly have had in their secondary.
“He’s long, can cover, (is) smart, comes from a great high school program and played great competition,” Greene said. “There is a lot to like. He was a receiver his whole life, and then they throw the kid out there and he does great. And he is a legit 6-foot-plus.”
Kentucky, Minnesota, Purdue and Indiana are among the competition, and in-state Ohio State has shown some interest, but has not offered at this time.
Valentine is in no hurry and wants to make as informed a decision as he can.
“I plan on having my decision made by the end of my senior season, but that could always change,” he said. “I’m looking for a school that fits me academically and athletically. A program that will give me the best chance of getting me prepared to take the leap to the next level, and a place that makes my family and I feel welcomed and is supportive of my goals both on and off the field.”
247Sports ranks Valentine as the No. 24 junior in the state of Ohio’s 2020 class.
2021 visitors coming in
Ironton (Ohio) sophomore Reid Carrico, a 6-foot-3, 220-pound linebacker/athlete, will visit Michigan State this weekend.
Carrico was offered by Marshall during the week, his first scholarship offer.
In addition to the Spartans, he will be visiting Wisconsin, Ohio State, Iowa State and Nebraska in the coming weeks.
Macomb Dakota 2021 running back D.J. Stepney also said he will visit Michigan State soon. Stepney (6-0, 180 pounds) holds offers from Central Michigan, Western Michigan and Akron. He played both safety and running back a year ago.
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 detroitnews.com.