Stoppin’ by for a visit – January 13th

January 15th – Update – When all was said and done, only four players made it to Boulder for their official visits, with one, running back Davien Payne, already a Colorado commit. The others who were in Boulder were tight end Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick, defensive back Chris Solomon, and defensive back Jeffrey Hall. I have it from several sources that Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick, a four-star recruit who committed to USC last summer, was given special attention from the coaches, particularly head coach Jon Embree. Whether or not JC-F found the “family” atmosphere he was reportedly seeking remains to be seen. (Even if he was impressed, he still has an official visit to USC scheduled for next weekend, so the USC coaches will have the last opportunity to sway Cope-Fitzpatrick to remain with Trojans). As to the other two uncommitted players, three-star defensive back Chris Solomon, I’ve been told, had a great time and may well become a Buff this week.

Up Next – With only two recruiting weekends left before Signing Day (Wednesday, February 1st), the Buffs will be pulling out all the stops in a last minute attempt to shore up the Class of 2012. A reliable source tells me that there are already 11 players expected for next weekend, a number which may grow even higher during the week. I will have Stoppin’ By for a Visit – January 20th, with a list of known visitors and their bios, posted on Monday.

Weather forecast for the weekend: Sunny, with high temperatures in the high 50’s. The men’s basketball team will be on the road, but the womenn will be hosting 4th-ranked Stanford on Saturday night.

Here are the players reported to be on the official list for this weekend (January 13th-14th):

Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick – TE – Just the facts … Cope-Fitzpatrick is a tight end prospect from Rocklin, California. Cope-Fitzpatrick is considered to be a four-star prospect by both Rivals and Scout. Cope-Fitzpatrick is 6’5″, 250-pounds, but can still run a 4.9 in the 40. Rivals has Cope-Fitzpatrick as the No. 7 tight end in the nation, while Scout lists him as the No. 4 tight end nationally.He caught 29 passes for 433 yards and five touchdowns while helping Whitney to 10 wins and a Capital League title this fall. Cope-Fitzpatrick has other offers from … just about everywhere, even though he has been a USC commit since June. Almost every Pac-12 school has offered Cope-Fitzpatrick, as well as schools like Nebraska and Miami. Cope-Fitzpatrick has taken official visits to Oregon and UCLA, but his decision will come down to one of three schools – Oregon, Colorado and USC. When asked at the Under Armour camp about his commitment this past week, Cope-Fitzpatrick indicated that he remained “solid” with USC, and will take his official visit to USC the weekend after visiting Boulder. To be honest, it sounds as if Cope-Fitzpatrick is just enjoying the recruiting process, and that CU has little or no chance of flipping this prospect. He has been to Boulder already (this past summer), and when asked about visiting Colorado, he was most interested in … “seeing the snow”. UPDATE: Check out the weather forecast … Mr. Cope-Fitzpatrick is going to be surprised – or disappointed.

Jeffrey Hall – DB – Just the facts … Hall is a defensive back prospect from La Place, Louisiana. Hall is considered to be three-star cornerback by Rivals, but a two-star wide receiver by Scout. Hall is 5’11”, 180-pounds. Playing cornerback for the first time in his prep career as a senior, Hall recorded nine interceptions, 55 tackles, four-and-a-half tackles for a loss and four forced fumbles. He also accounted for 672 all-purpose yards while helping St. Charles Catholic to a 3A state championship. Hall has other offers from … only a handful of schools. Kansas State has offered Hall, as has Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe, and North Texas. Colorado, along with North Texas, were the only schools to do an in-home visit with Hall in December (Eric Bieniemy and Greg Brown made the trip), which impressed Hall and his mother. The competition, though, for Hall’s services, may come down to CU, North Texas, and the Louisiana schools, because both Louisiana-Lafayette and Louisiana-Monroe have offered Hall the opportunity to play two sports at their schools – Hall batted .453 as a center fielder last season, and may still choose baseball over football. UPDATE: Hall may only take one other official visit after his trek to Boulder, most likely to North Texas.

Chris Solomon – DB – Just the facts … Solomon is a defensive back prospect from West Covina, Califorina. Solomon is considered to be a three-star player by both Rivals and Scout. Scout rates Solomon as the No. 88 safety prospect in the nation. Solomon is 6′ 0″, 180-pounds, as is being recruited by Colorado (Eric Bieniemy and Greg Brown again) as a cornerback. Solomon missed the first four games of his senior season due to a high ankle sprain but he still managed to rack up 1,232 yards of offense (as a running back) and 46 tackles on defense. Solomon has other offers from … Arizona, Oregon State, Nevada, Arizona State, and Washington. Solomon indicated in December that he might take as many as five official visits, but, with only three weekends remaining to take visits, his first official visit will be to Colorado on January 13th. Solomon did take unofficial visits to both Arizona schools last summer. UPDATE: With the coaching changes at both Arizona schools, Solomon has heard less from the Sun Devils and Wildcats. Solomon will take an official visit to Oregon State on January 20th.

Lavell Sanders – OLB/S –  Just the facts … Sanders is a safety prospect from Compton, California. Sanders is considered to be a three-star prospect by Rivals; a two-star prospect by Scout. Sanders is ranked as the 132nd-best outside linebacker in the nation by Scout. Sanders is 6’1″, 190-pounds, and, due to his size, is being recruited by Colorado as a safety. Sanders recorded 105 tackles playing linebacker as a senior at Dominguez High in Compton. Sanders has other offers from … only a handful of schools, with schools like Arizona State, New Mexico, and Northern Arizona vying for Sanders’ services. Arizona is also on the wish list for Sanders, though he does not yet have an offer from the Wildcats. It may come down to the position Sanders wants to play, as Colorado sees him as a safety, while Arizona has him pegged as an outside linebacker. UPDATE: Sanders has been taken off the official visit list by Rivals (he was never on the Scout list), even though, in an interview with BuffStampede.com on January 3rd, he indicated that he was coming to Boulder. Neither service shows Sanders as having any official visits scheduled. Connecting the dots … Sanders only got around to taking the SAT’s on December 3rd. Guess here might be that the results were not favorable.

Wes Brown – RB – Brown is a four-star running back from Olney, Maryland, remains on the official visit list for next weekend. However, on January 5th, before a national television audience for the Under Armour All-American game, Brown gave his commitment to home-state Maryland. As a senior, the No. 6 ranked prospect in Maryland (Rivals) rushed for 1,381 yards rushing and 22 touchdowns. “My support is back home,” Brown told the national television audience when making the announcement. We’ll just have to wait and see if Brown’s announcement means that he has closed out his recruitment, or if he is still willing to visit Boulder next weekend as scheduled. UPDATE: Brown is still showing up on Scout’s list of visitors, but there have been no posts on the site since Brown gave his commitment to Maryland, so his visit does not appear to be happening.

Also listed (at least by Rivals) as taking an official visit this weekend is running back Davien Payne, who committed to Colorado back in August. Payne’s bio …

DAVIEN PAYNE – RB

Just the facts … Committed July 9th, then really committed August 9th … Payne is a running back prospect from Perrius, California. Payne is 6’0″, 212-pounds. Payne reportedly runs a 4.6 in the 40. Rivals bio Scout bio YouTube highlights ESPN bio

What others had to say about Payne … Payne is considered to be a three-star prospect by both Rivals and Scout. Payne is seen by Rivals to be the 44th-best running back in the nation; while Scout rates Payne to be the 56th-best running back in the nation. “Davien is a big, strong, downhill runner with real good agility and real good vision,” said Citrus Hill head coach Eric Zomalt. “He can hit it inside and outside. We knew early on when he joined our team that physically he can do some things.” Here’s what a Rivals scout had to say about Payne: “Payne is cut from a slightly larger mold than former Citrus Hill-great, Deontae Cooper (now a red-shirt freshman at Washington), but the otherworldly production is still there. Payne rushed 318 times for 1,928 yards and 27 touchdowns (as a junior). Some will say that Payne played against a lower level of competition, and while that’s true, there’s no doubting the talent this 5-foot-11, 215-pound back possesses. UCLA, Arizona State and Washington have offered, and USC is interested”.

In 2011, Payne, through a 12-0 start to the season at Citrus Hill, had 133 carries for 1,382 yards (a nifty 10.39 yards per carry average), and 26 touchdowns.

Payne had other offers from … Nebraska, as well as from at least five other Pac-12 schools, including both Washington schools, UCLA, and both Arizona schools. The leader, though, for Payne’s services, was Boise State. “Boise State is still my leader,” Payne told BroncoCountry.com on July 8th, the day before he committed to Colorado. “They’re going to be tough to beat,” he added. “I was up there in April for the Junior Day. It was great,” said Payne. “I got to meet everyone, talk to the other RBs, and it just felt like my kind of environment. I could see myself out there.” As it turned out Boise State, which already has three other commits from running backs (surprisingly enough, all from Texas), asked Payne to grey-shirt, and Payne didn’t want to wait another year to suit and play college football.

In his own words … “I started playing football in 8th grade was told I would never be good enough, make varsity, earn a scholarship, or anything like that” said Payne. “Well, now look at my offers and those that said that to me don’t have any. I’m obviously doing something right.”

4 Replies to “Stoppin’ by for a visit – 1/13”

  1. Coach Embree asked Manaea to Grey shirt this year and that didn’t go over to well with him , this is why he has reopened is recruiting.

    Lakewood (Wash.) Lakes safety Ma’ne Manaea committed to Colorado back in September, but has recently learned that he is likely headed in a different direction.

    “With Colorado, they have the grey shirt situation with me,” said Manaea. “The last time I talked with them was a while ago. I talked to coach Tui, he came and told me about the grey shirt. I didn’t really know what to do from there and I decided to use my other four visits.”

    “I am going to try and find somewhere that I can go in right away,” said Manaea.

    Manaea holds offers from Idaho and Montana, as well as interest from Washington State and Wyoming.

    Even though he was disappointed in the way things turned out with Colorado, Manaea hasn’t let the process get to him.

  2. If you believe Rivals, we can expect the following recruits in on 1/20/12: 3 star tackle Colby Cyburt (CA); 3 star safety Chris Solomon (CA); 3 star defensive end Ewing Simmons (CA).

    And so far for 1/27/12: 3 star running back Psalm Wooching (HI), who’s listed as a “Solid Verbal” for UCLA. Pretty lean so far, especially since we’d like to see a big group in on 1/27/12 so that the Buffs can finish with a strong push.

    In terms of 4 star players that have visited CU and sometimes list CU in their top 5: corner back Yuri Wright (NJ); linebacker Deaysean Rippy (PA).

    4 star players that have, at times, shown some interest in CU that we’d like to see schedule an official visit to CU: running back Barry Sanders (OK); offensive tackle Alex Kozan (CO); cornerback Kevon Seymour (CA); safety Elijah Shumate (NJ); linebacker Seth Jacobs (CA); defensive end Javonte-Magee (TX).

    The only uncommitted 5 star player left that has, at times, shown some interest in CU: defensive tackle Ellis McCarthy. I know that it’s a longshot, but what a catch that would be!

    Coach Embree has stated that the Buffs have a couple of silent commits. I’m hoping for corner back Yuri Wright (NJ) and linebacker Deaysean Rippy (PA).

    On the positive front, the Buffs’ commits have all been solid so far (except for Ma’ne Manaea).

  3. I see that the status of Ma’ne Manaea (Safety from Washington)on Rivals has gone from “Soft Verbal” commitment to CU to open recruitment, with CU not listed in his top 5. Academic caualty? Let’s shock everyone and get Elijah Shumate to visit this month and commit, and we’ll all forget about Ma’ne Manaea.

  4. I read something online this morning (espn.com I think) where Brown said that he never intended to go anywhere but Maryland and had listed other schools as possibilities just to keep the media busy. In the same column he was quoted as saying that Randy Edsall and his staff better not expect Brown to help them recruit his teammates as he has no intention of doing so.

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