A Separate Piece... of the Pie!
One of those guys could be a star!
Looking at Dartmouth’s incoming class of 2015, you have to give credit to Buddy Teevens and his staff for mixing things up. There are a lot of regions and schools that I haven’t seen a lot of in the last few decades that are making an appearance on the Big Green’s list.
But Dartmouth’s freshmen roster is really a good mix of the old and the new, because along with all those new areas and schools there’s also a serious influx of old school prep prospects.
For whatever reason, prep-dominated recruiting classes in the Ivies started to become a rarity in the late 70’s and have almost disappeared since then. Yes, the quality of New England prep football did decline from the great era of the 40’s and 50’s, but some Ivy experts believe there’s been a resurgence beginning in the late 90’s.
Teevens seems to be the first to realize this, and the Dartmouth class of 2015 includes five players from classic New England preps. (I’m including Princeton’s Lawrenceville Academy here).
Of those five, maybe only one or two will actually make a real impact in Hanover. But Teevens is planting a wise set of seeds right now. I think this decade of Ivy ball will be marked by the return of the prep players to something closer to the forefront of the league.
One of Dartmouth’s most eye-popping recruits is from New Hampshire’s St. Paul’s Prep. He’s Jeff Winthrop, a 6-4, 285 pound defensive lineman who must have induced serious fear in those preppy fans every time he took the field.
Perhaps the leading non-prep in the class is Jordan Are, a 6-2 WR from Houston Columbia had its eyes on too.
I also like the looks of DE Zack Fowler, a 6-3 245 pound DE from Kentucky.
The WR transfer from Clemson, Robbie Anthony, should make an early impact and could help save incumbent QB Conner Kempe keep his job during what will be a furious competition during camp.
Anthony could be an Austin Knowlin-type for Dartmouth which is saying a lot. But other than guys like Harvard’s Clifton Dawson and Penn’s Gavin Hoffman, transfers from BCS-level programs have been more like blue collar pluggers that help Ivy teams rather than stars who make a huge splash.
Either way, coaches and fans love them and I’d like to see Columbia get more as well.