Tuesday, May 10, 2011

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.

16 Comments:

At Tue May 10, 04:07:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As the parent of several children from these prep schools, I can tell you that the football they play still isn't very good. It used to be the case that coaches would park players at prep schools for a year to get them ready to play or to raise their grades. Arguably one such player was our own Columbia great Archie Roberts, who PG'ed at Deerfield. But I think those days are long since past. Give me a player from a tough blue collar high school or a Catholic powerhouse any day.

 
At Tue May 10, 06:29:00 PM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

Yes, but some individual players are making their way back to the preps who can be impact players in the Ivies.

 
At Tue May 10, 06:57:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clifton Dawson was hardly a blue-collar plugger. He was a four-time member of the All-Ivy first team and leading rusher in Ivy League history and just the ninth player in NCAA Division I history to rush for 1,000 yards all four years.

 
At Tue May 10, 06:58:00 PM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

Yes, please read carefully... I wrote:

"But OTHER than guys like Harvard’s Clifton Dawson and Penn’s Gavin Hoffman."

 
At Tue May 10, 07:15:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do think Mr. Fraser came from a prep school and when healthy has been doing pretty good.

 
At Tue May 10, 08:13:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fraser was a PG

 
At Tue May 10, 09:58:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fraser was at Trinity-Pawling, if memory serves.

 
At Wed May 11, 06:43:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a player from these Prep Schools, and CC alum, I can assure you that they caliber of player and quality of competition is superior to that of public schools, or catholic "powerhouses". My Exter team alone had 7 D1/1-AA players on the team who matriculated to: BC, Indiana, Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Stanford, etc. Look, for example, at Harvard and Yale's rosters over the years and see where those kids came from. Harvard, Yale, Brown, Dartmouth and Brown have a proven track records here, we should learn something from this...
Greg Abbruzzese CC '91, Exeter '87

 
At Wed May 11, 07:13:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lawrence Academy here in Mass has 4 players going full ride to D1 programs-two to Iowa. I can also tell you that all four are 19 yr olds playing against 17/18yr olds and that is a tremendous advantage in football. So yes, there are good prep teams stacked with pg's but against a top NJ,Fla,Pa, TX etc high school, they would get annihilated.

 
At Wed May 11, 09:36:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Greg, go Exeter and go Lions!


Chen '82
(Exeter '78)

 
At Thu May 12, 02:47:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger Marsha said...

Respectfully, Greg, no prep school out there is Don Bosco. Or even Bergen Catholic or DeMatha. I wouldn't even necessarily bet against Bosco were it playing any Ivy school in football. They really are that good. (And I can personally affirm that Bosco has much better facilities than CU.)

And your claim that prep school football is "superior" to both public school powerhouses and Papist high schools is actually pretty silly. No matter how many graduates prep schools send to Ivy schools, there remains a world of difference between Ivy football and, say, Auburn. Even between Ivy ball and Boise State, Even as we remain fans, let's not overreach ourselves.

 
At Thu May 12, 04:12:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is not a HS team in the country that could stay close to CU, much less Penn. A great HS team like Don Bosco might have 5-6terrific D1 prospects who are more talented than Ivy players, but it also has 10 starters who will not play past HS. Every starter on an Ivy team was All-Region or better in HS. So were all the second-teamers. And the difference in strength between 21- and 17- year olds is much greater than you may think. To be blunt about it, CU has a number of players who tore it up in HS, whether in NJ or elsewhere, playing good competition. Very few duplicate their HS production as freshman. That's because college is much tougher. The jump is big!

 
At Thu May 12, 04:30:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger dabull said...

Please,Bosco against Ivy league team? Not a chance in hell.

 
At Thu May 12, 08:37:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Healthy debate, great to hear it! Marsha- I've seen Bosco and BC play, and I'll even be traveling to Florida this year to see them play at Manatee High in Bradenton. Bosco has indeed produced some very good teams over recent years, but BC is VERY overrated! Regardless, I wish we had higher caliber players from these programs. We have one RB from BC (Gerst) who can't seem to find the field??? Here's a thought... maybe we're looking at this all wrong? Maybe the key to our success is to recruit Greg Toal a Head Coach?

GA CC'91
p.s. Take a virtual tour of the facilities at Exeter and then you'll be more informed...

 
At Thu May 12, 09:16:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gotta back Greg up here....Went to plenty of Prep games back in the day...we always beat up on the local high schools when we played them and fed some good players to D1 and the Ivies (were one in the same back then). Not Texas football or anything in terms of front lines but the skills players were tops

Chen '82

 
At Sun May 15, 12:43:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been watching Bosco Bergen Catholic football for years vs the rest of high school football. The level of football is light years ahead of public school and Prep school football. When you get any kid from either one of these schools take note. The jump is really not that big to the Ivies. You can not be ranked as the #1 one high school football team and #20 respectively without incredible talent. The number of kids they have put into the NFL speaks for itself. If you ever have the chance to get to a Bergen Catholic Don Bosco game you will be in for a treat. Gerst is a home run threat every time he touches the ball if used correctly with a little blocking.

 

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