For the UVA football program, 2017 Class offensive line recruiting is turning out to be somewhat of a roller coaster ride.
After scoring some very good news recently with the commitment of offensive tackle Ryan Nelson, the Cavaliers received some bad news this past Sunday night, when Dudley (Greensboro, N.C.) tackle prospect Bryson Speas announced he now plans on attending NC State. Speas originally pledged to UVA on June 24 but received an offer from NC State on July 22 while in Raleigh on an unofficial visit.
Beginning April 15, when UVA landed its first offensive line recruit, here is a rundown of the offensive line recruiting developments the past six months:
– April 15: Interior lineman Tyler Fannin commits
– June 23: Interior lineman Harry Crider commits
– June 24: Speas commits
– July 29: Interior lineman Chris Glaser Jr. flips from Miami of Ohio to UVA
– August 15: Crider flips from UVA to Indiana
– September 26: Nelson commits
– October 9: Speas flips to NC State
Fannin, Glaser Jr., and Nelson give Coach Mendenhall a quality trio of prospects. However, given the dire depth chart situation the Cavaliers need six or seven offensive line recruits in total in this class. Speas and Crider may not be four or 5-star recruits, but they are losses. After all, the staff offered them for a reason. The exact impact, though, won’t be known until we see how the 2017 Class plays out.
Moving forward, Fannin will definitely play on the interior line. Glaser Jr. expects to play guard. Both the interior line and tackle spots should be addressed, but tackle is the bigger emphasis at this point.
SEC School Targets Virginia Commit
Offensive line is Virginia’s top need in this class. The defensive line is up there, too. Dominion (Sterling, VA) defensive lineman Tommy Christ is a good get for the Cavaliers here, but it appears there is some new competition.
Blessed to have received an offer from the University of Mississippi pic.twitter.com/MSXGj46GGq
How much is Christ considering this new offer? Is he open to any other schools? As of now I’m honestly not sure, but I have requested an interview with in-state standout and hope to know more soon.
Christ, a 6’5”, 250-pound senior, could play end or perhaps nose tackle if he sticks with his commitment. Nose tackle Mandy Alonso and defensive ends John Kirven and Ryan Thaxton round out UVA’s current 2017 Class defensive line haul.
Another commit, defensive back Zachariah Burton, plans to take an official visit the weekend of the Louisville game. All three of these prospects have signed grant-in-aid papers with Virginia and intend on enrolling in January of 2017.
In terms of targets, top offensive tackle target Mekhi Becton and outside linebacker prospect Zane Zandier may be in Charlottesville on Saturday. We will have a full report on this weekend’s expected visitors on Friday.