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Gold and Black Illustrated Vol28, Digital1

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Page 42 of 74

GOLD AND BLACK ILLUSTRATED VOLUME 28, ISSUE 1 43 "Basically they said the age of the 5-10 corners isn't working as well anymore," said Perkins, a well-built, 6-foot-2 projected corner- back. "To guard these 6-5 receivers that run 4.5s and 4.6s, you have to be longer and more athletic and they said I fit that description." Purdue's deep at running back currently and looking to stay that way, landing ear- ly commitments from Flori- da's Destin Coates and Geor- gia's Clay Harris, while still appearing like a leader for Florida's Andrew Cunning- ham, who has claimed more than 60 offers. Cunningham has Purdue on a five-school list that also includes Cal, Utah, IU and Louisville and says he'll visit West Lafay- ette late in the season or in December. Perhaps the signature position for Purdue moving forward will be quarterback, considering Brohm's reputation. Jack Plummer of Arizona took the distinction of being the first QB to commit to Purdue under its new coach. He did so in mid-June. BIG CHANGE THIS YEAR The 2018 recruiting cycle will be the first to in- clude the NCAA's new early signing period, which will run Dec. 20-22, offering prospects an opportunity to sign a month-and-a-half or so earlier than the tradi- tional first-Wednesday-in-February date, which will remain in place. It'll also provide coaches some valuable clarity in the game of Chicken that recruiting so often becomes that time of year. Coaches nationwide have undoubtedly taken early commitments in most cases expecting early signings. If committed prospects opt not to sign in Decem- ber, "then they're not really committed," Brohm says. Generally speaking, all over college football, it is conceivable that committed players who elect not to sign at first opportunity will lose the scholarships they'd ver- bally agreed to accept. Brohm wouldn't go so far as to say that might happen at Purdue, but admitted the early signing period will show coaches exactly where things stand with their com- mitments. "With all our commit- ments, while we wanted them on board, it was, 'Hey, don't commit until you're ready, but if you commit, we want you committed,'" Brohm said. "I'd anticipate all the guys committed sign- ing in December and rolling with it. And if they don't, that means they're not committed. "I'm sure other schools are the same way. We feel confident it'll happen." The new early signing period runs right on top of the long-standing mid-year signing date, at which time at least Plummer — as an anticipated spring enrollee — is expected to sign. It's pos- sible, too, that Purdue will take another pass at mid-year junior college recruits this winter. It will make for a bottleneck of December activity. In advance of Dec. 20, it appears as if Purdue is working toward hosting the bulk of its established commitments for their official visits days earlier, for the Dec. 16-17 weekend. PURDUE OFFERS A JUNIOR COLLEGE PLAYER A sign that Purdue will be active once again in the junior college market came in August, when the Boilermaker coaching staff issued College of DuP- age linebacker Evander Craft his first scholarship offer a few weeks after he attended a camp in West Lafayette. Brian Neubert Jack Cravaack committed to Purdue not knowing whether he'll play defensive end or tight end for the Boilermakers. He still doesn't know; Boilermaker coaches like him for both.

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