Sept 8, 2012; Minneapolis, MN, USA: Minnesota Gophers defensive back Derrick Wells (13) tips the ball away from New Hampshire Wildcats wide receiver Joey Orlando (84) in the second half at TCF Bank Stadium. The Gophers won 44-7. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE

Striking gold in football recruiting


Demarius Peppers.  Nate Godwin.  Eric Carter.

Remember these names in a few years.

Coach Jerry Kill is suddenly on a hot streak when it comes to recruiting.  After not receiving a commitment during the first ten weeks of the season, the Gophers suddenly got three within a week’s time.

With the additional commits, Minnesota stands at nine in the class of 2013.

The Gophers are still lacking a four-star recruit, something former coach Tim Brewster was able to do well.

Kill, on the other hand, has been able to progress his recruits from the beginning.

A great example of this was from Kill’s first class in 2011.  His fourth-worst rating recruit was Derrick Wells.  His worst was Cedric Thompson.  The duo are now the two starters at the safety positions.

Wells is on his way to becoming a big name in the Big Ten.  He received a lot of recognition this season after a strong performance.  Thompson racked up his second interception of the season against Michigan.  They have been important in the staunch secondary that the Gophers have prided themselves on this season.

The play of the secondary should have convinced Tartan High School standout, Keelon Brookins, to play in his home state.  And, originally he was, but before the season began, Brookins de-committed from Minnesota to choose Wisconsin instead.

Recruiting goes far if you can notch a running back or a quarterback.  So far, Minnesota is still waiting on a running back.

The team did get Illinois quarterback Chris Streveler.

Streveler is still a two-star recruit according to Rivals, but he has the stats to play at the next level.  He holds the type of skills that fit under Kill’s system because he can run and pass well. He did not throw an interception during his senior season until the final regular season game.

The top talent that Minnesota has kept in-state has been Chris Wipson of Wayzata.  He recently tore his ACL while his team fought for a place in the state tournament, but Minnesota has stated that they will continue to honor his commitment.

The three commits over the past week have gone to needed positions.  The Gophers have stated that they want two or three wide receivers in this year’s recruiting class and they got one with Eric Carter out of Florida.

Carter is a solid option in the slot for the Gophers in the future.

He chose Minnesota over schools including Missouri, Cincinnati, and Purdue but after visiting Minnesota last month, Carter was certain he wanted to be ‘golden.’

The second commit of the week came from Nate Godwin who announced his decision via Twitter.  Godwin is a safety from Florida who is familiar with Carter.  He admitted that Carter’s decision helped his own decision.  Godwin honed several offers from schools such as West Virginia and Iowa State.

The final commit of the week was Demarius Peppers, a defensive lineman from Tennessee.  He also visited campus a few weeks back and was blown away by his experience.  After consulting his family multiple times, he could not wait to call the coaches with his commitment.

If Kill can convince high schoolers to visit campus and take an official visit, the likelihood of a commit is a lot higher because of the amenities that the football program has.

Tags: Football Gophers Minnesota Golden Gophers Recruiting