The Central Michigan Chippewas are the first MAC West team to be featured on our NSD Recap series, and they’ve put together a talented class despite a smaller number of commits. John Bonamego and his crew reeled in four three-star prospects as well as three legacy additions to CMU, and finished as the #121-ranked recruiting class in the nation per 247Sports.com. Without further ado, let’s meet the latest players who are #FiredUp about being Chippewas.
QB George Pearson - Matawan, New Jersey, Mater Dei High School (6’1”, 210 lbs., three-star)
Pearson had a run of success at Mater Dei where he led the team to a Non-Public Group II title as a junior and returned to the finals in his senior season. As you can see on his Hudl film, he is accurate and confident in the pocket but needs to polish his footwork and throwing mechanics. With Tommy Lazarro, Tony Poljan, and Austin Hergott still in the QB room, he will likely sit out 2018.
RB Jonathan Clark - Hackensack, New Jersey, Hackensack High School (5’10”, 185 lbs., two-star)
Clark has proven himself to be a multifaceted weapon as he registered 1,130 all-purpose yards and ten rushing touchdowns in his junior season. Clark keeps a good pad level, has tremendous balance, and does a good job of getting north-and-south. A year or two to get bigger, stronger, and faster would go a long way in helping him be an every-down back.
WR Keonta Nixon - Roselle, Illinois, Lake Park High School (6’4”, 205 lbs., three-star)
WR Tyrone Scott - Savannah, Georgia, Jenkins High School (6’3”, 187 lbs., two-star)
The Chips picked up some big targets in the passing game with Nixon and Scott. Nixon is great at getting separation and making things happen after the catch while his future running mate at WR does much of the same. With no senior WRs for CMU in 2018, there may be some opportunities for these two to see the field this season.
TE Joel Wilson - Petoskey, Michigan, Petoskey High School (6’5”, 210 lbs., two-star)
Wilson is a project that is transitioning from high school QB to college TE, but he has the physical tools to do a lot of things. Central has three TEs left on the roster, so he could be pressed into action fairly quickly if he picks up his new position fast.
OL Nolan Eike - Batavia, Illinois, Batavia High School (6’6”, 260 lbs., two-star)
OL Tyden Ferris - Delton, Michigan, Delton-Kellogg High School (6’4”, 236 lbs., two-star)
The Chippewas shored up the offensive line for the future with state champion Eike and All-Stater Ferris, whose father lettered at CMU in the late 1990’s. The former is really raw as a tackle while the latter is an effective finisher as an interior OL. A couple years to get stronger and the team should have a strong core to build around up front.
DL Tico Brown - Kokomo, Indiana, Homestead High School (6’2”, 276 lbs., two-star)
DL LaQuan Johnson - Flint, Michigan, Burton Bendle High School (6’3”, 230 lbs., two-star)
DL NeVen Simington - Saginaw, Michigan, Saginaw High School (6’4”, 225 lbs., two-star)
DL Romello Tarver - West Palm Beach, Florida, Oxbridge Academy (6’5”, 245 lbs., two-star)
Central Michigan is bringing in some talent on the defensive line as Brown holds the career sack record for Homestead, Johnson and Simington was named First Team All-State with the latter being a legacy addition for CMU, and Tarver led his team to the state title game in 2017. With the depth already at DL, don’t expect this group to see the field much until at least 2019.
LB Carlton Cleophat - Pompano Beach, Florida, Blanche Ely High School (6’0”, 210 lbs., two-star)
LB Cory Gildersleeve - Saline, Michigan, Saline High School (6’2”, 220 lbs., two-star)
CMU got some playmakers at the second level with Cleophat recording over 250 tackles, 26 sacks, ten forced fumbles, and five recovered fumbles during his high school career while Gildersleeve was an All-State Honorable Mention as well as another legacy recruit. It will be hard for these two to see the field in 2018 with 11 returners at LB.
DB Montrae Braswell - Avon Park, Florida, Avon Park High School (5’11”, 187 lbs., three-star)
DB Randall Harris - Walled Lake, Michigan, Western High School (6’0”, 182 lbs., three-star)
DB Kobe Lewis - Americus, Georgia, Americus-Sumter County South High School (6’0”, 215 lbs., two-star)
The defensive backfield added some serious talent as Braswell was Second Team All-State in 2017, Harris broke up 21 passes and had two interceptions in his senior season, and Lewis was named Co-Player of the Year in Regional 1-4A. Expect these three to be limited in the 2018 season.
ATH Braeden Childress - Big Rapids, Michigan, Big Rapids High School (6’3”, 210 lbs., two-star)
Childress is an intriguing prospect as he is a three-sport athlete and was an All-State TE. As you can see on his Hudl tape, he has the burst and physicality to play at the college level but is pretty raw as well. One would expect him to get a shot at TE with the shortage at the position.
Next up in the National Signing Day 2018 Recap series: the Akron Zips. You can get caught up with the recaps below.