There are few topics in this world today that brings people together in consensus. Kansas State football needing a talent injection happens to be one of those topics. While I advocate for a far reaching recruiting map, the state of Kansas is a crucial recruiting territory for Chris Klieman. If the Wildcats manage to land an elite (4 or 5* players) high school recruit in the 2020 class, it’s most likely going to come from the Sunflower State.
That said, K-State hasn’t landed a 4* prospect from Kansas in quite some time. I stopped looking after 2010, so I can confidently say that it’s been 8 years since a 4* player from Kansas has matriculated to Manhattan. The state of Kansas doesn’t always produce 4* talent, but when it does, teams with a more national brand swoop in and read off the top of the menu.
That needs to stop.
The state of Kansas currently has 2 4* players (according to the 247 composite rankings), and to be completely honest, Klieman is starting the race significantly behind for both players. Recruiting is all about relationships, and those usually start when the players are freshmen and sophomores. Based on everything I’ve read, that wasn’t the standard operating procedure for the last staff.
The class of 2021 or 2022 probably has better potential for signing an elite in-state prospect, but the coaching staff has been unleashed, and I expect they are going to at least take a swing, if just to set a precedent that the Wildcats are once again going to make the effort.
Today, I’m taking a look at the top rated player in Kansas for 2020. So without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, I present Tuner Corcoran.
Note: I use the 247 composite for recruiting.
Turner Corcoran - OT - 4* (96) - 6’6, 280 - Lawrence Free State
Corcoran is a legitimate top 100 player (currently 71st Nationally) with a laundry list of blue blood offers, and based on the limited film I have at my disposal, it’s easy to see why.
He’s got a prototypical frame for a tackle, moves his feet well, plays with a mean streak, and leaves a wide swath of discarded bodies in his wake. I don’t consider myself an offensive lineman expert, but he certainly has the raw talent that coaches drool over.
I suppose it’s easier to see for yourself.
Where K-State Stands Right Now
The Wildcats are in the top 7.
The Wildcat coaching staff set up a tent in the parking lot of Lawrence Free State, and came away with 3* ATH Keenan Garber and 3* FB Jax Dineen in the 2019 class. The Free State coaches are familiar and comfortable with the new staff, and that’s a key in recruiting. Also, selling the ability to play with his former teammates is something, maybe not much, but a starting point.
Klieman and company also have playing time to sell. Corcoran looks like a player with the ability to start from day 1, and conveniently enough, K-State would have an opening for just that sort of player in 2020. If Corcoran is interested in playing early, the wide open depth could be a huge selling point.
Something to the effect of, “why go out of state, wait around and hope you get a chance to play at some point in your career when you can come to Manhattan and have a solid shot to be a 3 or 4 year starter?”
Finally, the new offense is perfect for an offensive lineman that likes to attack in the the run game. If the staff can get the offense up and running this year, it could show Corcoran exactly how he would be utilized in a run heavy offense. On film, he looks like a nasty, road-grading tackle, and that is the type of lineman that works well in Courtney Messingham’s system. He wants tackles that can get to the second level and hunt down linebackers, and that is what Corcoran excels at on film.
It’s still early, but as of now, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Ohio State appear to be the main players for Corcoran. It’s going to be hard for K-State to catch up with those three schools. Oklahoma and Ohio State are both coming off conference championships and Scott Frost has a significant head start at Nebraska.
The absolute best case scenario is for this recruitment to stretch out as long as possible. The new staff needs to show exactly what they have planned, and the young assistants need as much time as possible to build up their relationship with Corcoran. I like what K-State has going on with their staff, but they are going to need time to gain traction, and shake off the recruiting malaise of the last regime.
Odds are that Wildcats are on the outside looking in for Corcoran’s signature, but this tweet from an hour ago provides some real hope.
I’m saying....there’s a chance.