In what’s becoming one of our favorite post-signing day traditions on the Big 12 blog, we reached out to more than 15 conference coaches and staffers this week and asked them to (anonymously) name their favorite prospect in the 2016 class.
We gave them a chance to praise not only the kids they signed but also the ones they missed out on. And they responded with a ton of answers.
Duffey, a three-star recruit who racked up countless honors as the top player in the Dallas-Fort Worth area this season, was praised for his mobility and his arm, and repeatedly was called a “winner” by the recruiters we polled.
"I think he fits what Kliff [Kingsbury] and them do on offense perfectly,” one Big 12 coach said. “He's kind of a mini-Patrick Mahomes. A little bit more speed, maybe. He's got instincts and he knows how to move the pieces around on offense. He's a baller."
Duvernay is no underdog -– he’s the No. 3 receiver recruit in the country –- but rival coaches still admire that he’s a burner and a perfect fit for the Bears’ offense.
“He can flat fly. He's got world-class speed and you just don't find that, which is why he had every offer in the world,” a Big 12 coach said. “He accelerates and he just looks different than most. He goes zero to 60 in a heartbeat.”
Many more players earned love from the coaches and staffers we surveyed. Get to know these names:
Baylor CB Parrish Cobb: “We said from the get-go he was a corner who could start as a freshman. I believe it. He’s a boundary corner. Never says a word. Total team guy.”
Iowa State TE Dylan Soehner: “A legitimate 6-foot-7, 277 pounds and athletic enough to remain at tight end. I cannot believe Arkansas didn’t recruit him.”
Kansas CB Kyle Mayberry: "He's going to be a really good player. I think he could've flipped somewhere else. He's got the speed you need and the ability to lock people down, which is so important in the Big 12."
Kansas State QB Skylar Thompson: “I loved him and many others on our staff did, too. He will be a good one.”
Oklahoma LB Kapri Doucet: “We thought we’d get him. He’s a good player. Instant impact. He’s the real deal.”
Oklahoma State LB Calvin Bundage: “Bundage is really intriguing. He’s long and aggressive. He’s physical, he looks like a Velociraptor and he will strike you."
TCU RB Darius Anderson: “Really liked him a ton. He was so explosive in his senior year, and what he did in the state playoffs, they really rode him. Fun to watch.”
TCU WR Isaiah Graham: “He’s going to be special. He has good speed and length.”
TCU RB Sewo Olonilua: “He’s a freaky dude. Can play linebacker, running back ... where are they going to play him?"
Texas QB Shane Buechele: “Has all the qualities to be a great quarterback, both on and off the field.”
Texas DT Chris Daniels: “Daniels will be a good player. He has size, explosiveness, he’s able to separate off his blocks. There aren’t a lot of guys out there like that.”
Texas LB Erick Fowler: “Fast twitch and acceleration. He’s one of those Von Miller-type guys. Not overly tall, but built well. When he wanted to play, s---, he couldn’t be blocked.”
Texas S Brandon Jones: “Love him. He plays in space well. When his team needed him on offense, he was such a team guy. Big guy who can run, and I think he's got real good intelligence and 10.5 or 10.6 100 speed.”
Texas RB Kyle Porter: “He’s very good. He was very professional. He knew exactly what he was looking for, which is good. And he’s a hell of a player.”
Texas’ entire defensive line class: “Texas cleaned house on the defensive line. If all those kids qualify, their D-line coach will be smoking cigarettes and relaxing on the sideline for the next three, four years.”
Texas Tech WR Derrick Willies: “He’s an impressive player. He’s not a typical juco kid. He’ll give them those post-and-gos and the ability to take shots. Derrick can really run for his size and has really good ball skills. He’s really going to help Mahomes.”
West Virginia LB Brendan Ferns: “He’s very athletic. He’s long, rangy, a good-looking kid right now.”
West Virginia S Kyzir White: “He has all the qualities. He’s physical, he has good size and he can play man coverage.”
Later, we’ll have Part 2: picks for the Big 12’s most underrated incoming recruits.