For MSU and other football programs, targeting and offering offensive linemen just may be the most difficult position to mine prospects at. The young men need to be physically gifted, of course, but on the O-line, development takes as long or longer than any other position, so the ability to project growth and development is absolutely vital.
Plus, linemen need to be as smart as any football player this side of quarterbacks. The trenches require a young man to learn intricate assignments in addition to knowing what his four other buddies are doing on the line.
Christian Pace and Andrew Donnal are the big names out of Ohio. Both have MSU offers and both have said fine things about Mark Dantonio and the MSU program. The interest for these two young men in strong from all over the Midwest, so landing one of two would be a mini coup.
Another pair of Buckeye linemen are also on MSU's radar. Travis Jackson, out of Columbus, just got an MSU offer and projects to the interior of the line. And Eric Franklin, from Youngstown, is being courted by MSU and many others for his 6-foot-5, 300 pound frame.
In Illinois, the Land of Lincoln, Garrett Parker and Tyler Loos have been drawing Spartan interest. Parker, at 6-foot-5, 275 pounds, and Loos, at 6-foot-4, 265 pounds, both have some growing to do, but most Big Ten teams see their potential. So if MSU wants in on the action, making a concerted effort before and during summer camp season should make MSU a viable candidate, as long as the young men are right for Mark Dantonio's and Don Treadwell's pro-style offense.
In Michigan, man child Dionte Savage, 6-foot-3, 320 pounds, is one to keep an eye on. The Flint product certainly has the build to play at the next level, so long as the weight stays under control, but putting everything together, onfield and off, will be vital.
Traverse City's Peter Rigan (6-foot-5, 275 pounds) brother of former Spartan Patrick Rigan and teammate of Spartan 2010 verbal Max Bullough, could be an important legacy recruit at MSU. The young man has been getting Spartan interest, and after summer camp could find himself with a Green & White offer.
Finally in Michigan, there's a lineman in MSU's backyard with a giant target on his back, perhaps the most coveted hog on MSU's radar. Dantonio and the Spartan staff recently offered DeWitt High School's Paul Jorgenson, a 6-foot-6, 275 pound monster. With national interest, including overtures from the Florida Gators, Jorgenson is a highly regarded prospect, to be sure. But being right in MSU's neighborhood gives the Spartans an undeniable edge.
If championships are built in the trenches, the shoulders of players such as Jorgenson and other MSU prospects carry an enormous load for coaching staffs like MSU's with nothing but Big Ten titles on the mind.