Another In State Player Gets an Offer from Dantonio!

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Maurice Jones-Drew, remember him, the diminutive player for Jacksonville Jaguars of the NFL? MSU recruit Nick Hill loves him and for a good reason. Like Jones-Drew, he also is trying to sell the thought that being smaller than average doesn't hurt you when attempting to play against big time competition.


Hill, out of Chelsea, is all of 5'7" and perhaps 184-pounds soaking wet. Yet he has had a big impact as a high school running back and recently has been offered a scholarship by MSU. His numbers are impressive, rushing for 3,918 yards and 53 touchdowns his last two years and 4700 yards for his varsity career so far.


The workout numbers are good too; he has been timed in the 4.38-4.41 range for the forty, benches 330-pounds, and has a 34.5" vertical jump. On the field he is noted for his vision, speed, instincts, quickness, and the uncanny ability of making guys miss by making good cuts. Basically, most who have watched him say it is a combination of speed and strength regardless of height that helps him shine on the football field.


Yet, it doesn’t end there, those who know Nick say he is better person than he is a football player and is well liked by everyone, and doesn’t seek the limelight. Other accolades include being named the Ann ArborNews Player of the Year in 2008, and being considered for the U.S Army Bowl All-Star Game are adding to his success, but his determination is on the football field.


There are both positives and negatives to his recruitment however. First, he apparently was a Wolverine fan growing up, but nobody is perfect, and some scouts still have concerns about his play on the field. Some say he is more quick than fast, and that he lacks top-end breakaway speed. Some say he is not real elusive in space, and some even wonder about the competition he has played against and his ability to run through defenders on the Division I level. We all have critics however and the Spartan staff has a proven track record with evaluating talent, and with an offer in hand from the Spartans, the Spartan Nation should have no worries.


More positives include the fact he rarely takes a clean shot from a defender, has good vision and balance, has great burst out of his cuts, and is a north-south runner, always looking for extra yardage. He also is able to bounce and spin from initial contact, and always keeps his feet moving. Does that sound like any recent MSU running back in that regard? Plus he is a solid receiver out of the backfield. So overall it seems the positive attributes outweigh any negative ones, and MSU is hoping they can land this gifted runner.


Other offers are from Stanford, Notre Dame, Central and Eastern Michigan, Kent State and Toledo, and he is still waiting for UM to make an offer apparently. It should be interesting to see what happens with the running back recruiting picture for MSU, but Mark Dantonio since he arrived on campus has wanted to upgrade the speed of the MSU roster and Hill certainly would do that.