It may have gone unnoticed by some but the Western Michigan Broncos are building up a nice 2015 recruiting class. Over the last fw months, they have already gained plenty of talented players, including a verbal commitment from Saginaw Swan Valley (Mich.) 2015 athlete Alex Grace, who committed to WMU back in June.
On Monday, head coach PJ Fleck picked up two more verbal commitments, the first coming from West Ottawa (Mich.) athlete Samuel Beal and the second coming from Wheaton-Warrenville (Ill.) athlete Keishawn Watson.
Although, I have yet to see these two talented young men in action, Mike Rogers, who is the publisher of BroncoBlitz.com, says the both players are talented and will fit right in with the Broncos.
Beal, out of West Ottawa (Mich.), brings good shiftiness and solid speed. For West Ottawa he played both wide receiver and corner back. Beal’s film shows good hands, though West Ottawa appears to keep Beal on short routes in an attempt to get the football to him as quick as possible and let his legs do damage.
Also visible is Beal’s willingness to get out and block when he’s not thrown the football. At 1:05, Beal is on the kick return team and when his teammate snags the ball for a kick return, Beal — standing around 6-foot-2 and 177-pounds — pancakes the first gunner he sees, allowing his teammate to turn the corner and pick up over fifteen yards on the play.
Near the 1:27 mark of his film, Beal shows his speed as he explodes off the line of scrimmage and sprints by the corner who is in press coverage. The corner turns his hips to force Beal inside where he is supposed to have help over the top from the safety, but Beal soars into the endzone before any help arrives and both defenders are left trailing him as he hauls in a 40-yard touchdown.
Watson, who comes from the same high school as current WMU standout wide receiver — and a Freshman All American — Corey Davis, Watson shows the athleticism necessary to play at the Division I level. Watson’s coming to Kalamazoo as an athlete, but played wide receiver on offense in high school.
In his game film, Watson shows good burst off the line, the grittiness to block in the run and short passing game — though, an athlete like Watson isn’t asked to do it much because he’s more valuable with the ball in his hands for Wheaton-Warrenville — and good enough hands. His real skill lies in his ability to make guys miss.
At :55 of his game film, they snap the ball at the 15 yard line and Watson, lined up in the slot, flares out for a bubble screen towards the far sideline. He catches the ball at the 20, and a safety comes unopposed to thwart Watson in the open field. However, Watson shakes-and-bakes while jutting back to his right towards the middle of the field. A second defender, who is being partially blocked, attempts to get an arm on Watson and but fails. A third defender is blocked by Watson’s fellow wideout, but Watson simply hurdles him and is finally dragged down around the three yard line.
The play puts on display Keishawn Watson’s good ability to make defenders miss. At WMU, Watson will have the chance to show his magic on both sides of the ball before diving into a position full-time
If the new talent isn’t enough to get Broncos fans excited, then maybe the news of where Western Michigan’s recruiting class currently ranks will get fans excited.
According to BroncosBlitz’s twitter account, the Bronco’s two latest commitments, give the Broncos a total of 20 verbal commitments for the 2015 class, currently tying them with the Clemson Tigers for the sixth most.
The two commitments tonight give WMU 20 for the 2015 class, tied with Clemson for the sixth most.—
BroncoBlitz (@WMURivals) July 29, 2014
While it may not seem like a big deal to the average fan, trust me it is. If you think I’m exaggerating just ask Mike Rodgers of BronconBlitz.com
WMU is easily pacing the Mid American Conference in recruiting for the second straight season. Northern Illinois and Central Michigan both sit in the mid-70’s in the national team recruiting rankings. – Mike Rogers
“At this point, Western Michigan University is attempting to replicate their historic recruiting class last year which placed inside the top-60 in the nation, a first for any Mid American Conference school.” – Mike Rogers
I don’t know about you but I consider that to be a big deal and I can’t wait to see who the Broncos add to this already impressive 2015 class next.
Written by LBeasley (Lauren Beasley), Sports Contributor for Radio One Detroit
For more of L-Beasley’s (Lauren Beasley) sports news and in-depth sports content, click here.