With the mid-season coaching change, recruiting for Purdue has been in a state of flux. Subsequently, I didn’t keep up with Purdue recruits because I didn’t want to waste much time, or build much excitement, for players that may never play for Purdue.
Now that Jeff Brohm has taken the helm, and things have somewhat settled down, it’s a good time to take a look at how our current recruits (and barring a late defection) soon to be Boilermakers did in their 2016 high school campaigns.
We’ll start with perhaps the most important position in all of sports: Quarterback
Height, weight, rankings can be found on 247 sports, stats on MaxPreps, and videos on Hudl
School: Villa Park High School (Villa Park, CA)
Composite Ranking: 3* (.86)
Position Ranking: 25 (Pocket Passer)
Rush Yards: -48 (sack yardage)
Nick Sipe was the gem of the Hazel recruiting class, and I was almost certain he would jump ship with the ouster of Hazel and his staff. Luckily for Purdue, however, Sipe stuck with his commitment, and he must be thrilled with how his loyalty was rewarded. Jeff Brohm has the Midas touch with quarterbacks, and Sipe has the raw skills to be an excellent fit in the Brohm system.
The first thing I notice in Sipe’s highlight film is ball placement. Not only does Sipe deliver an accurate pass; he puts the ball where the receiver can continue to run after the catch. It’s one thing to put the ball on the receiver, but it’s another skill to put the ball in front of the receiver so he can pick up yards-after-catch.
Sipe has excellent arm strength as well, showing the ability to throw the ball down field on a line. When he needs to put some air under his deep throw, he shows solid touch, dropping the ball over a receiver’s shoulder. I was especially impressed with his ability to step up and drill the deep post route. That’s an important route for a college quarterback, and Sipe zips it into the receiver, taking the deep safety out of the play and protecting his receiver.
He isn’t going to be much of a dual threat, but he is athletic enough to move around in the pocket. He scrambles to pass as opposed to run, and while his ability to place the ball is diminished on the run, he is still able to put the ball on the receiver.
Sipe is Purdue’s second highest rated recruit (behind TJ Jallow) and has offers from both Boise St. and Colorado St. He has stuck with Purdue through this entire process, so barring a late offer from one of the bigger Pac12 teams (he mentions Washington as the “dream school”) he should end up in West Lafayette, where I anticipate a redshirt year to develop under the brothers Brohm.
School: North Side Christian School (St. Petersburg, FL)
Composite Ranking: 3* (82)
Position Ranking: 34 (Dual Threat)
Rush Yards: 235
Griffin is another recruit that stuck with Purdue through the tumultuous 2016 season. Granted, he’s Mike’s son, which certainly helped in maintaining his commitment. He’s another guy that must have been ecstatic to see Brohm named head coach.
Alstott’s ability to throw the ball on the run is his best attribute. In his highlight film, he rarely throws the ball from the pocket. He is able to deliver the ball rolling both left and right, and does an excellent job of squaring his shoulders and delivering the ball on the move.
He reminds me a little of Blough, because he is able to get outside the pocket, extend the play, and keep his eyes down field. He puts a little too much air under some of his passes, which might cause problems with improved competition. Griffin is more a playmaker than a pure quarterback, but the college game seems to be trending that direction anyway.
When he gets into the open field, Griffin is more of a power runner (surprise, surprise) than an elusive runner. He finishes runs hard, and could be a solid option on the goal line, as a dual threat option.
There is some question on whether Alstott will stick at quarterback, but I think he will get a fair shot to stay behind center. He has scholarship offers from both App St. and Troy (both respectable programs) and his long-term connections to Purdue may have dissuaded bigger schools from offering. I anticipate a redshirt year, where the coaching staff will be able to better assess his long-term viability at quarterback. Regardless of position Alstott is a baller who will find a way to make an impact on the Purdue roster during his career.
Purdue is done with quarterbacks for the 2017 class, even if one of the two current commits doesn’t sign. Purdue is in perfect position to swing for the fences at the QB position in 2018 because of the depth of incoming and current talent on the roster.