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Akron, Ohio 2011 CB Recruit Doran Grant Likes What He Sees From The Spartans


Mark Dantonio has impressed Grant with his "Not roughing up" recruits' approach looking for commitments.  Photo courtesy of Mark Boomgaard.

Mark Dantonio has impressed Grant with his "Not roughing up" recruits looking for commitments. Photo courtesy of Mark Boomgaard.

Akron, OH


There is no doubt that Mark Dantonio needs to land defensive backs in the 2011 football recruiting class. Spartan Nation was in Akron, Ohio, to catch up with a young man that the Spartans have targeted for that class. His name is Doran Grant and this 5’11” 175# CB is one of the best in the nation.


“I have really developed a love for playing defensive back. I feel like I am the best. I don’t back down from nobody,” was how Grant explained his talent to me. Those are pretty confident words from the young man, but he truly isn’t arrogant.


You can watch my video interview with Grant that went over ten minutes when you CLICK RIGHT HERE.


“I work very hard. I truly understand that I have a gift from God. I know that it isn’t me and I am trying to develop that gift that He gave me,” was how Grant put in perspective his talent.


Grant has got a lot of attention from around the nation and recently said he had no favorites yet. “I am getting a lot of offers and I could say that this team is in a top five or that team, but I truthfully at this point couldn’t give you a solid top five. I don’t want to lie to anyone so I am trying to keep it real open and honest,” was how he described where he is the recruiting process.


He was very open about MSU. His father played for the Spartans, and the way some in the media have portrayed it, has frustrated him. “I read that I am a legacy recruit and that really makes me frustrated. It has nothing to do with it. If my father had played at a school that wasn’t any good I wouldn’t be interested. To act like just because he went there I like them it isn’t true. Mark Dantonio is a great coach. He isn’t tense. He doesn’t try to push me. I have been there for several games. I really like Coach Dantonio and how he doesn’t try to rough you up. I am interested in Michigan State, not because my dad went there. I can think for myself. It is a great school and a great program. That is why I am interested. I don’t look at myself as a legacy recruit. I read that and it isn’t true. They wouldn’t like me if I wasn’t any good and I wouldn’t like them if they weren’t any good.”

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After talking about other facets, he went back to Michigan State talk on his own. “Coach Narduzzi is a real passionate man. Even off the field here at school you can see it and feel it. He is very up-tempo. I have been up there to the camps and I went up there for basketball games. I want to pick a school that will let me play right away if I earn it. All I want is the opportunity and Michigan State will give that to me. That means a lot. I want to have an immediate impact and I can’t if I won’t get an opportunity. Michigan State has made it clear I would get the opportunity, and it would be up to me to make it happen.”


Cornerbacks are notorious for at times avoiding a hit. Not Grant. He plays like a linebacker as a cornerback. I am not afraid to hit. I can cover, blitz, and come up against the run. I want to be a complete player,” was how Grant explained his talents to me.


With all of the football talk, this youngster who hails from the alma mater of LeBron James (St. Vincent St. Mary) has his head together. He is willing to talk of his talent, but he is far from an egomaniac. 


In fact, while at his school his classmates and teachers alike talked about his personality and not about football. One teacher said, “His work with special Olympics is amazing. When his football career is over, I would expect him to still be doing that. He really loves it.” 


Grant gave me a big smile and said, “Everyone has been given something. We all have an obligation to give back. They are right I love doing that. If you didn’t know me you wouldn’t know I play football. I like that. I can separate the game I play from the person I am. I do love it. (Special Olympics)”


As for now, Grant will wait until the week before the Under Armour All American Game or the week after to announce his choice of where he will play his college football. Whatever school he picks is getting a great cornerback and an even better young man. On and off the field, he will have an immediate impact.


Grant has built a great relationship with incoming 2011 Spartan QB Connor Cook. When we were with Cook at his Hinckley, Ohio, home last week he told Spartan Nation, “I text and talk to Doran all the time. I keep telling him that I want to play with him at Michigan State.” Grant talked of the Spartans future signal caller. “We have really developed a bond and a good friendship. He’s trying hard to get me to join him there.”


Grant may not like me saying this, but he will be a legacy recruit: His own legacy. He is a tremendous football player and an even better young man.