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Mel Tucker, Tom Izzo Are Each Recruiting At A High Level Right Now

MSU's football and men's basketball recruiting have taken big upswings...

Michigan State athletics has had a successful 72 hours, from Saturday to Monday, in terms of recruiting success. The men’s basketball program sealed a commitment from five-star forward Xavier Booker, while football got a verbal pledge from four-star offensive tackle Stanton Ramil.

When player rankings are finalized, Booker may be the highest-rated recruit that Tom Izzo has ever landed, if he signs the dotted line on Signing Day. He is considered the No. 1 player in the country by, the No. 3 player nationally by 247Sports and the No. 6 player by On3 Sports.

Ramil, meanwhile, is the highest-ranked offensive line commit that Mel Tucker has landed thus far during his tenure in East Lansing. He’s the third-highest ranked commit of the Spartans’ 2023 class, which features 10 four-star prospects at the moment. The school record for four-star or higher prospects in nine.

Booker is a huge get for the hoops squad, as fans and some reporters have expressed concerns that recruiting was declining for Izzo and the men’s basketball program. Along with four-star point guard commit Jeremy Fears, Michigan State now is No. 5 in class rankings for 2023 with Booker in the fold.

Izzo has flipped nearly his whole staff since the 2020 season, and they are starting to see results. Assistant coach Mark Montgomery has been seen with Izzo at many of Booker’s games, as they were the two main recruiters in this battle.

Booker’s talent speaks for itself. He’s long, physical, but also shifty. He has also built some chemistry with Fears, as they played together at the Pangos All-American camp. The pair of future teammates have not only played together, but have both been recruiting other players to play with them at MSU.

Booker and Fears have been seen on social media interacting with four-star forwards Gehrig Normand and Coen Carr. Michigan State recently received a crystal ball in favor of landing Normand, who would provide a big boost to the Spartans depth at the wing position.

Normand announced that he would be making his college decision tonight — Tuesday, Aug. 2 at 8:30 p.m. Michigan State is in an excellent spot to land the No. 89 overall player in the 2023 class, according to 247Sports' composite rankings.

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If MSU can land Normand and another quality prospect like Carr, the 2023 class has the potential to be one of the best in school history.

At the same time, the football program also has the potential to have its best class in school history. Ramil brings some much needed talent to the offensive line. Listed at 6-foot-7, 310 pounds, he would be one of the largest players on the team already.

Ramil's high school, Thompson HS in Alabaster, Ala., has won two state championships in a row. Having a winning pedigree matters, and Ramil certainly fits that bill as Thompson’s starting left tackle during the high school’s latest state title run. With more team success, it is very possible Ramil could see his ranking could increase over the next couple months.

Michigan State has four offensive lineman committed to the 2023 class, with Ramil joining four-star interior offensive lineman Cole Dellinger (Clarkston, Mich.), four-star IOL Clay Wedin (Tampa, Fla.) and three-star IOL Johnathan Slack (Detroit, Mich.). The Spartans are looking to add one more tackle prospect to its O-line haul in 2023.

So who has more recruiting momentum, football or basketball? At the moment I would say basketball, since Booker could be the highest-rated recruit in the Izzo era, and the Spartans don’t look like their finished.

Booker and Fears alone would be a great class, but adding more could make it special. Football is only halfway done, and already has the most four-stars for a single class in school history, should they all sign. Their momentum isn’t being downplayed, but Ramil has been the only football commitment in almost a month.

Both programs are recruiting at high levels, with championship standards. The results on the field (or court) this season could help boost recruiting even further. 

Twitter: @a3danm | @mlounsberry_SI