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2/2/2008 3:21 PM

FOOTBALL: Minnesota's back on the map for prospects

By Chip Scoggins, Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Published Saturday, February 02, 2008

MINNEAPOLIS - At the height of his recruitment, Eden Prairie senior Willie Mobley received 80 text messages a day from college coaches, media members and recruiting analysts.

“Every day I had to delete my inbox because it got so full,” he said.

Cretin-Derham Hall's Michael Floyd went a step further, changing his cell phone number twice to avoid the deluge of texts and calls.

“People were always calling,” he said.

Champlin Park's Sam Maresh probably would have faced the same recruiting blitzkrieg had he not given a verbal commitment to the Gophers back in April. He's even more thankful now.

“It took a lot of pressure off me,” he said.

It's understandable why so much attention was heaped on Minnesota's top three football prospects.

All three players are ranked among Rivals.com's top 250 recruits nationally - Floyd is 27th, Mobley 174th and Maresh 244th.

Rivals elevated Floyd to its highest ranking - five star - after he proved to be one of the top performers at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. Mobley and Maresh both are four-star recruits.

College recruiters took notice of all three. Floyd, one of the nation's top wide receivers, had his pick of schools before selecting Notre Dame. Mobley, a defensive lineman, committed to Ohio State after receiving 29 scholarship offers. Maresh, a middle linebacker, also had a number of offers, including Michigan, and likely would have attracted more, but he opted to commit early in the recruiting process.

Those three brought star power to a state not known nationally for its football prowess.

“It's big to us,” Mobley said. “I think Minnesota football is very underrated. We have a lot of good players and teams here.”

One longtime high school coach said Floyd is the best wide receiver he's ever seen in Minnesota. Even former Holy Angels star Larry Fitzgerald Jr., who was practically unstoppable in high school and has become a two-time NFL Pro Bowl wide receiver, sounded intrigued by reports on Floyd.

“I hear a lot of good things about him,” Fitzgerald said.


HomeHomeRecruitingRecruiting2008 Football R...2008 Football R...MN DE Willie Mobley - Ohio StateMN DE Willie Mobley - Ohio State

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