This is it folks. We are finally near the end of the recruiting cycle for football for the young men who will graduate this year. I'm sure many of them are just as excited as you are to be done with the process so they can focus on finishing up their school year and getting ready for their big arrival on campus this summer.
This year's class of (probable) future K-State Wildcats looks to be a special bunch for many reasons. And now is as good a time as any to review what looks to be one of the (if not the) strongest classes of high school recruits in Snyder 2.0 (and possibly 1.0 as well). We've already talked about the three young men who completed high school early and are already in Manhattan taking classes and bonding with their teammates. We've also discussed the ONE JUCO recruit and how entirely unnatural that feels to K-State fans. So now lets look at the 14/16 (Rivals/ESPN) young men who have verbally committed to Kansas State and have pledged to sign their NLI to the Wildcats next Wednesday. For kicks, lets break them down by state.
We'll start with the state nearest and dearest to the Wildcat program. Two of the three early commits are from Kansas, and they will be joined by four/six (so far) more young men from the Sunflower State.
Evan Applegate (R/E): A 6'7" 270lb OL prospect from Mill Vally HS in Shawnee, KS. Evan committed back in August and never looked back. Applegate helped lead his team into the 4A-1 playoffs where they lost to a Pittsburg team lead by future teammate Alex Barnes.
Kyle Ball (E): A 6'2" 225lb DE prospect from Shawnee Mission East HS in Shawnee Mission, KS. Obviously a bit underweight for a D1 DE right now, but a RS year and a bunch of time in the weight room and buffet line should help that. Ball, who committed in December, helped lead his Lancer squad to their first-ever Kansas state football title, beating state powerhouse Hutchinson in the 6A title game.
Brett Bell (E): A 6'6" 225lb TE prospect from Bishop Carroll HS in Wichita, KS. And yes, he's related to the Bell kid at OU (cousin). Brett's older brother Beau is a LB at the school down the river, so it seems that this Bell wanted to blaze his own trail. Brett's father Mike was a All-American LB for Colorado State and was drafted by the KC Chiefs second overall in 1979, going on to a 13-year career.
Trey Dishon (R/E): A 6'3" 300lb DL prospect from Horton, HS in Horton, KS. Trey is a recent commit, having flipped from D-II football power Northwest Missouri State at just the beginning of this week. Horton was an All-State selection and helped lead his Horton squad to the 3A playoffs, where they lost to 3A power Centralia in the first round.
Scott Frantz (R/E): A 6'5" 285lb OL prospect from Lawrence Free State HS in Lawrence, KS. Yeah, they kid we stole from the enemy camp. Frantz committed in June, and helped lead his Firebird team to the 6A semi-finals (losing to state runner-up Hutchinson).
Denzel Goolsby (R/E): A 5'11" 195lb Athlete from Bishop Carroll HS in Wichita, KS. Denzel is the cousin of former Wildcat great Brain Goolsby, as well as former Wildcat Jarard Milo.
Georgia has become a main recruiting ground for K-State since Andre Coleman joined the staff. This year is no different, and the 2015 class features three young men from The Peach State (should have been four...), including the crown jewel of the class.
Kalin Heath (R/E): A 6'2" 190lb RB/WR prospect from Cartersville HS in Carersville, GA. Heath was the fifth young man to commit to K-State as part of the 2015 class, doing so in June. Kalin appears to be built like former K-State RB Daniel Thomas, and boasted a solid set of offers.
Duke Shelley (R/E): A 5'10" 160lb DB from Tucker HS in Tucker, GA. Duke is the star of this class as the top-rated recruit for K-State among the major services. Shelley will need to add some muscle weight to be competitive as a DB in the Big 12, but the kid shows all the speed and athletic abilities required for this level.
Isaiah Zuber (R/E): A 6'0" 170lb WR prospect from Stephenson HS in Stone Mountain, GA. Zuber was the second commitment in the 2015 class, doing so at the beginning of June, and the start of a slew of June commitments. Isaiah was a bit of a surprise commitment at the time, but has been all purple since his announcement.
Big 12 recruiting is always focused on the Lone Star State. And for good reason, as Texas has led the country for many years now in the number of D1 recruits. However, until the beginning of this week the Wildcats had only secured the services of one prospect from the big state. At the beginning of the weekend the Wildcats are now sitting at three, though it wouldn't be a surprise to add a couple more before Wednesday.
Evan Curl (R/E): A 6'4" 280lb OL prospect from Flower Mound HS in Flower Mound, TX. Curl was the second Texas commit in 2015, committing in December, and the fourth OL prospect overall in the class. Curl became the lone Texan for a month after a de-commitment.
Johnny Durham (E): A 6'0" 180lb DB prospect from Aledo HS in Aledo, TX. Durham apparently flipped from Texas State after going on an official visit to K-State at the end of this week. Johnny helped lead his HS squad to a state title this season.
Kylan Johnson (R/E): A 6'3" 200lb DB prospect out of Skyline HS in Dallas, TX. Skyline has been sending at least one player a year to K-State for a while now, and this young man should make us all forget about that kid that turned redcoat. Kylan committed earlier in the week, after apparently receiving a second chance to commit to the Wildcats.
There are currently five young men that are the sole athlete coming from their state to Manhattan, KS. Three come from states that share a border with Kansas, and two that are from the heart of SEC country.
Adam Holtorf (R/E): A 6'5", 270lb OL/DL prospect from Seward HS in Seward, NE. Holtorf was the third commitment for K-State's 2015 class, and could easily play on either side of the ball as a Wildcat. Holtorf appears to be quite the scholar and held an offer from Harvard.
Chase Johnston (R/E): A 6'4" 220lb LB prospect from Carl Junction HS in Carl Junction, MO. Johnston was a relative unknown when he became the seventh Wildcat commit back in July, but quickly turned heads and is rated as a consensus 3-star athlete.
Tyler Mitchell (R/E): A 6'5" 280lb OL prospect from Montgomery Academy in Montgomery, AL. Stealing a decent recruit out of Alabama is no small feat, and stealing a lineman from the grasp of Auburn and Bama is big in more ways than one. Mitchell committed earlier this week.
Darreyl Patterson (R/E): A 6'0" 165lb Athlete from Lawton HS in Lawton, OK. Patterson chose K-State earlier this week over offers from Oklahoma, Louisville, and Iowa State. Stealing an Oklahoma prospect from the Stoops boys is extra sweet, and should also indicate how good a prospect he is. And with K-State the last of his official visits, he looks extra likely to stick with the purple through to Wednesday.
Reggie Walker (R/E): A 6'3" 230lb DL prospect out of Ponchatoula HS in Poncahtoula, LA. This is will not be the first young man named Reggie Walker to play for K-State this century, as you all may remember the guy who now plays for the San Diego Chargers that played in the purple at the end of Snyder 1.0. Walker projects as a rush-end/LB at the D1 level, and could easily be the steal of the class.
With National Signing Day only a few days away, this list is bound to change some before these young men sign their names to their NLI's. But hopefully these young men stay committed, because they could be talked about for years to come.