Trieu: Georgia DE Cumberlander might be Spartan sleeper
Michigan State’s staff has had success in Georgia on the recruiting trail. The best example of that would be the 2010 class in which the Spartans signed cornerback Darqueze Dennard and receiver Keith Mumphery.
Dennard was a late offer, a two-star sleeper who was uncovered in the winter, took an official visit in January and went on to develop into a first-round draft choice in East Lansing.
The first part of that story is playing out down in Georgia again.
While Roswell High defensive end Koby Cumberlander holds 18 offers as opposed to the two Dennard had before Michigan State came, Cumberlander is still considered under-recruited by many in the Peach State.
That is because, despite the number of offers, very few of those are from Power Five schools. That was surprising considering the 6-foot-2, 230-pound prospect’s quickness, motor, and his 66 tackles and 15 sacks as a junior. He had another good season as a senior, helping Roswell reach the state title game.
Michigan State was his first Big Ten offer, a moment that brought tears to his eyes.
“It means so much to me,” he told Spartan Nation’s Justin Wieber. “I have wanted to be a Spartan since I was very young. And to know that I'm going to be another athlete out of my family to play for them is an incredible feeling.”
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Cumberlander’s uncle is Kevin Willis, an NBA lottery pick in 1984 out of Michigan State after playing his high school ball at Detroit Pershing.
That connection has him excited to see more of Michigan State.
Cumberlander takes an official visit to MSU on the weekend of Jan. 13.
Pennsylvania running back to visit
The first two weekends recruits can take official visits again, Jan. 13 and Jan. 20, are expected to bring fairly large groups of recruits to East Lansing.
One of the newer names that has set an official is Steel Valley (Pa.) running back DeWayne Murray. Murray (5-9, 185 pounds) will be on campus the weekend of the 20th.
Murray does not have a Michigan State offer yet, but one could materialize as taking a second running back in the class has become more of a realistic possibility for the Spartans.
Murray is one prospect whose offer list and rankings do not match his production on the field. As a senior, he was named Class AA player of the year after rushing for 2,000 yards and 46 touchdowns. That has led to a spike in his recruitment.
He holds other offers from Toledo, Cincinnati, Kent State and more, but there continues to be talk that other programs, including in-state Pittsburgh, may end up offering.
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Washington (D.C.) Woodson wide receiver Edward Hendrix is a physical 6-foot-3, 195-pound junior who caught 30 passes for 768 yards and eight touchdowns this season as his team went 9-2.
He is also now the holder of a Michigan State offer. The Spartans offered last weekend, joining Pittsburgh, Clemson and Syracuse on his offer list.
Hendrix has not yet visited East Lansing.
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.