The rumors regarding the death of Purdue’s 2022 class were greatly exaggerated (mainly by me). Over the last week, Purdue’s revamped coaching staff has pulled in some solid mid-level talent. On paper, none of the recent commits are program-changing guaranteed contributors, but they’re not reaches made by a desperate staff either. 90% of the teams in the country would be happy to add the talent Purdue has theoretically added to the 2022 recently.
Kyle has done a good job of giving y’all player profiles in my absence (he does a fine job when I’m actually working as well). I’ll have more to add on individual players later, but I’m interested in the reasons behind Purdue’s recruiting resurgence in June. I’ve been critical of Jeff Brohm and company’s recruiting in the past, but I like what they’ve got going at the moment.
The Brohm Effect
Some of the early shine of the Brohm era has been tarnished over the last two season, but don’t get it twisted, Jeff Brohm’s offense is still a draw for Purdue recruiting. Brady Allen’s commitment was big for the Boilermakers and directly tied to the Brohmfense.
Coach Brohm also played a crucial role in the recruitment of massive New Jersey offensive lineman Andre Oben. Brohm played with Andre’s dad, former NFL offensive tackle Roman Oben, at Louisville, and that certainly didn’t hurt Purdue’s chances. Brohm’s Louisville ties provided Purdue with some of their best talent early in his tenure. That pipeline has dried up over the last few classes, but bringing in Oben in 2022 is a big addition to a position Purdue has struggled at in the Brohm era.
Mark Hagan - Game Changer
If Purdue and Jeff Brohm are able to turn this thing around, we’ll look back on the addition of Mark Hagan as the turning point. I firmly believe this.
Coach Hagan has open up the once fertile Texas to West Lafayette pipeline that helped build Purdue during the Tiller years. Defensive linemen Nic Caraway and JP Deeter wouldn’t be in play without Hagan stalking his former recruiting grounds in Texas. Purdue’s ability to recruit defensive players out of Texas and the arrival of Coach Hagan at Purdue isn’t a coincidence.
The Odd Couple
I’m not sure there is a more unlikely recruiting duo on the Purdue staff than running back coach Chris Barclay and offensive line coach Dale Williams, but they’ve been on what I can only imagine as a Tommy Boy-esque recruiting trip through Ohio and have pulled in some nice talent. Coach Barclay is listed as the primary recruiter and Coach Williams is listed as the secondary recruiter for the two new Ohio commits.
Williams has done well in Ohio (on paper), bringing in guys like Dontay Hunter and Kyle Joringan. Pairing him with coach Barclay has worked surprisingly well. Kentrell Marks has serious upside and is the type of back I’ve been thirsty to see in Brohm’s offense. Terence Thomas is another Barclay/William collaboration that I find intriguing. He’s currently listed as a wide receiver, but could just as easily play defensive back in college.
New Recruiters Stepping Up
Ryan Wallace was brought into the program as a offense/special teams assistant, with a focus on the tight end position. He is listed as the primary recruiter for 2022 tight end/h-back recruit Charlie Kenrich. Kenrich is Wallace’s first win as a primary recruiter, and he’s a solid prospect out of Ohio. That should bode well for a Purdue staff that’s been a little one dimensional in terms of recruiters.
Marty Biagi, Purdue’s special teams coach, has solid Texas/Louisiana ties, and used those ties to help close Roman Pitre. He’s not listed as a primary or secondary recruiter, but if you want to know which coaches (or support staff) are involved with a recruit, their commitment tweet is a good indicator.
You’ll notice Coach Biagi is listed in the tweet thread. That tells me that he was an important part of bringing in Pitre, who I also like as a high upside recruit.
Speaking of a new recruiter on the scene, Justin Sinz made an appearance in New Jersey offensive lineman Vince Carpenters’s commitment tweet. Sinz is in his first season as the Assistant Director of Football Recruiting, and appears to be paying dividends already.
It’s still too early to celebrate, but the 2022 class is looking better than I anticipated. I’m encouraged to see some of the younger assistants getting into the recruiting game, which should benefit Purdue long term. Of course, this is all hinges on Purdue’s 2021 on-field performance, but it’s been a solid June for the coaching staff.