April 5, 2010

Spartans have eye on DE Traylor

Ohio is loaded with high-level prospects for the class of 2011. Head Coach Mark Dantonio and his staff are hoping to continue the trend of landing outstanding players from the Buckeye State. One player they are focused on is 6-foot-4, 215-pound defensive end Austin Traylor of Columbus Walnut Ridge High Schools. SpartanMag.com caught up with Traylor last night and has the latest on his recruitment.

Some are saying that the amount of talent in Ohio this year may exceed any other class that has come along in the last decade. The talent is not only high-level, but deep and several positions. Defensive end is one of the strongest positions in the state for 2011 and Traylor is a big reason why. We asked SpartanMag.com about his recruitment.

"I have 14 offers right now," he said. Things are going really good. I have taken visits to Cincinnati and Michigan State."

Being in the shadow of "the Horseshoe" would make it seem like getting a player with Traylor's talent would be a tough task, but Spartan linebacker Coach Mike Tressel is working hard to make that happen.

"I like Coach Tressel a lot. He is real cool." Traylor said. "I like how everything is close together up there at Michigan State football-wise. The freshman dorms are right there next to the weight room."

Have the Spartan talked about what the like about you as a player and how they would like to use you in their scheme?

"Yes, they said they like my speed, athleticism and ability to rush the quarterback. They like me as a defensive end and outside linebacker. I like the way they would plan to use me in their defense," Traylor stated.

While Michigan State has made a strong early impression on Traylor, he did indicate that he is not in a hurry to make his choice and is still weighing all of his options.

"Right now I don't have a favorite or a school that sticks out," he said. "I am just trying to find the program that fits me best and has people I want to be around for the next 4 years of my life. I also want a place where I can learn. I really don't have any idea of when I will make my final decision."

Many have speculated that Taylor would jump on an Ohio state offer, but the Buckeyes went out and took commitments from 3 other defensive end prospects without offering Traylor. The talk is now that Ohio State wants him to consider the idea of coming in as a tight end prospect. As a junior Traylor caught 20 passes for 389 yards and five touchdowns. On defense he had 80 tackles, including 14 sacks despite often facing double-teams.

Traylor is very athletic and would certainly be able to make that transition to either side of the ball. As of right now Traylor indicated that he does not have a preferred position and is willing to do whatever helps the team be successful. However, it could come down to what school gives him the best opportunity to make an early impact."

Look for Coach Tressel and Coach Dantonio to work hard to get Traylor back on campus this summer for a day of camp. The best way to learn about the coaches is to spend the day working with them in a coaching setting.

The Spartans have had a lot of success with Ohio defensive linemen the last few years and last year they were able to get one of the best defensive ends in the entire stet in Marcus Rush. If the Spartans can land a player like Traylor it will be a big recruiting coup for the Green and White.

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