On Recruiting Trail, Boston College Continues to Clean Up in Massachusetts
Yesterday, it was another Bay State recruiting win for Boston College as local wide receiver Ismael Zamor pledged to the Eagles. The Everett HS product is one of growing number of examples of Jeff Hafley and his staff setting a new foundation to dominate recruiting in Massachusetts.
In year's past, BC has been active locally. But the story was always the same. If the recruit was big enough to go nationally, the Eagles would more often than not lose that recruit to those powerhouse schools. This situation got worse when former defensive coordinator Don Brown left to go to Michigan. The Wolverines basically got first dibs on anyone in the area, and took players like Zak Zinter, Kalel Mullings and Mike Sainristill to the Big House. Even Michigan recruiting analysts bragged that the Wolverines owned Massachusetts. And it was hard to argue with that, Brown dominated the area.
But the mood is shifting in local recruiting. Players like Matt Ragan and Ismael Zamor have all said the new coaching staff was part of the reason they committed to the Eagles. In fact in the past three months, BC has landed six local recruits from Massachusetts. Four of them had offers from the Wolverines. Linebacker Casey Phinney decommitted from Michigan when the local team made a push for him, instead choosing to play for Hafley. Tony Muse, from Lawrence Academy, chose to walk on at BC, even while holding an offer from the Wolverines. And a trio of Catholic Memorial '23 recruits, two of which had Michigan offers, have already verballed to the Eagles.
Since taking over the Eagles, there has only been one local recruit (TJ Guy) that Michigan stole that BC really wanted. The others the school didn't push very hard for, or were not interested in. Tyler Martin never had a BC offer. Louis Hanson, they never made a huge push for, and were looking elsewhere at the position.
The excitement that Jeff Hafley has created for his program is catching on locally. He is an engaging coach, that is producing a positive culture which is attractive to recruits. On top of that, he has surrounded himself with assistants who are connecting with these kids, and helping to support Hafley's bigger picture. And the results on the field (minus last weekend), have only helped magnify his message.
There are still going to be battles for local recruits. '21 offensive lineman Drew Kendall's destination is still shrouded in mystery, and there are some really big names coming in '22 & '23. But the stranglehold that Don Brown had on the area is gone. Michigan will not be raiding Massachusetts whenever they please. Boston College is going to not only be in on all of these recruits, they are going to win a lion's share of the local recruits. Hafley's message has resonated, and he is now dictating the terms in the area.
Former head coach Steve Addazio always talked about building a wall around Massachusetts. He never did, and the results were very mixed. But Jeff Hafley and his staff have taken over and pushed hard already. Based on what we have seen already on the recruiting trail, the wall already has it's foundation and concrete. This is Boston College's state.
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