Strong Local Flavor Coming
The commitment of Braxton Neal is the logical starting point for this discussion. Neal is somewhat held back from producing big numbers by the offense that Lakota West runs. They are, like most teams these days are, a team that will spread a defense from sideline to sideline with receivers, but passing isn't the goal, creating running lanes is. As such passing the ball wasn't a huge option for their offense, and Neal's numbers show that. But when they do pass to Neal things like this happen.
So getting a player with that much potential, at a position where he will have time to grow and develop is a good thing. A better thing is that the Bearcats appear to have made up some ground with his teammates C.J. Stalker and George Asafo-Adjei, two high calibre prospects who haven't paid much attention at all to the Bearcats, but that isn't exactly a surprise. In the past Lakota West hasn't been a particularly welcoming place for UC coaches. The last Firebird to make a commitment and follow through on it was Kevin Schloemer who committed to Brian Kelly, so its been awhile.
In the interim Lakota West has produced no shortage of quality football players from Ryan Kelly to Jordan Hicks and and a lot of good ones in between like Mikel Horton and Kyle Meadows and none of them took more than a cursory glance at the Bearcats. That many former Firebirds now wear the colors of Kentucky is a big reason why the experts have the Wildcats as the clear leader for Asafo-Adjei and as a leading option for Stalker. At this point I don't expect the Bearcats to land either, but it seems to be a slightly more legitimate possibility than it was a few weeks ago.\
Quarterback On The Way?
When we last caught up with Ross Trail the Arkansas native was about to head to Oxford, Mississippi for the Ole Miss camp in an attempt to garner a Rebel offer and become their QB commit for the class of 2015. He did not get that offer, it went to Jason Pellerin instead.
So deprived of his first choice Trail immediately continued with his summer tour of college campuses. He visited Cincinnati on the 13th which was the first day of a UC camp, went to Louisville on the 14th and was expected to visit Memphis* yesterday. At this point all signs point to Trail becoming a Bearcat. He is, and has been, the Bearcats top priority at quarterback for months. He has been to campus, met with the coaches and seen the facilities. If he makes his decision soon it is likely for the Bearcats, but stay tuned.
Speaking Of Quarterbacks
Former Michigan State commit and future professional wrestler Jayru Campbell has been extended an offer by the Cincinnati coaching staff. (UC Comes up just after the 2 minute mark)
Campbell has become infamous for body slamming a security guard at his high school. I won't link to it here because it is pretty brutal, but if you really want to find it it is not hard. Campbell is now officially decommitted from Michigan State and considering offers from UC, Miami and LSU.
It is hard to suss out just how interested the Bearcats are in Campbell, if the offer is a backup plan in case Ross Trail goes elsewhere or even if UC is recruiting Campbell as a quarterback. What is known is that Campbell will turn himself into the authorities on July 28th and serve the remaining 57 days of his sentence beginning then. Needless to say that isn't a great thing for anyone. Keep an eye on this for now.