Dantonio and the Spartans Prepare for Tonight’s Arrival of More Recruits for the 2009 Class!

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The upcoming weekend may seem like any other weekend to the casual fan. The Spartan Men’s Basketball team takes on the University of Illinois Saturday and…that’s about all. But as Lee Corso would say “Not so fast my friend”, that game against the Illini will serve as much more than a chance for the Spartan Hoopsters to advance to 5-0 in conference play, it will serve as yet another opportunity for Head Football Coach Mark Dantonio and his staff to host several recruits. With as many as three remaining scholarships, this weekend will serve as a pivotal stage in the Spartans final push for 2009 recruits.


The Spartan staff will have their hands full this week, bringing in at least four unsigned recruits in the 2009 class and one player who is already committed to play for the Green and White. David Barrent is only player visiting this weekend who has pledged his services to MSU and he will undoubtedly be trying to persuade the others to do the same.


Of those visiting, Spartan Nation has already profiled two of them, Defensive End Michael Buchanan and Offensive Lineman Henry Conway, but while those players may be known amongst Spartan fans the other visitors, 3-Star Athlete Jairus Jones and 3-Star DE Bernardo Nunez, may not be.


Jones hails from Wharton High School in Tampa (FL) and is listed as an athlete for good reason. The 6’2” 210-pounder displayed amazing versatility this past season playing safety, linebacker, running back and wide receiver while also returning kicks and punts. Not only did Jones play nearly every position, he excelled at all of them, registering 40 catches for 800 yards and 12 TD’s on offense to go with 188 tackles and 4 interceptions on defense. Not bad for a kid who hurt his knee in a pre-season scrimmage and played the entire season with lingering effects. The Spartans are battling both Oklahoma State and Big Ten foe Iowa for his services and while Jones doesn’t plan on announcing his intentions until Signing day, this weekend could give the Spartans a major leg up in his recruitment.


Another out of state prospect Hoboken (NJ) DE Bernardo Nunez will also be making his way to East Lansing this weekend. Nunez checks in at 6’3” 232-pounds with a 300-pound bench press max and 450-pound squat max to boot. MSU will Nunez’s last official visit after he ventured to both Maryland and Pittsburgh on previous occasions. His Pitt visit was just last weekend and from the looks of things the Spartans will have to put on a solid performance in order to top the Panthers in their courtship of Nunez. While he lists Dave Wannstedt’s team at the top of his list, Nunez made a point of taking an official visit to MSU before he makes his final decision, which he says will be pretty clear-cut after this weekend. He was selected to First Team All-State in New Jersey the past two seasons and would be a nice player to add to MSU’s already talented defensive line.


The recruitment of Jones and Nunez along with Buchanan and Conway, indicates that Coach Dantonio and his staff are sticking to their principles looking for lineman on both sides of the ball and possibly taking a flyer on an athlete of Jones’ caliber. All of these recruits also speak to the fact that MSU coaches are now looking more and more out of state after cleaning up so well in the Great Lakes State this past year. While the Spartans seem to be sticking to the east coast, with all these prospects coming from Ohio, New Jersey or Florida, the emphasis on out of state talent is there.


All the aforementioned prospects have offers from MSU, so immediate commits are not out of the question. While MSU Basketball is busy honoring the past by retiring Morris Peterson’s #42 Jersey, MSU football will be looking to the future and trying to add a the final pieces to the class of 09.