So Charles Goldberg has a report from campus on Auburn enrolling a new batch of freshmen from the football team’s class of 2010. The headline and first couple of paragraphs deal with the batch’s headliner (natch), Michael Dyer.
Nonetheless, as anyone who follows Auburn football knows that 1. Michael Dyer was always on track to qualify without any difficulties 2. Michael Dyer is awesome, this is nonetheless what I would consider a classic example of burying the lead. I mean, it’s good news and all, but it’s not the lead. The lead which is here:
Also arriving were defensive tackles Jeffrey Whitaker and Kenneth Carter; defensive end Justin Delain [sic]; wide receiver Trovon Reed; linebacker LaDarius Owens; athlete Ryan Smith; and punter Steven Clark.
Ever since Signing Day, the “will they make it or won’t they?” qualifiication buzz has centered on two prospects: Carter and Delaine. Carter we found out last week was good to go, but the expectation here was that we’d still wind up waiting until the fall for Delaine’s status to be resolved.
Uh, no. If Delaine’s on campus and taking classes, it’s been resolved right freaking now, man. Delaine will be a member of Auburn’s football team in 2010.
Which means that after signing 27 players in February, Chizik and Co. will see the NCAA strike down the immediate eligibility of … one of those players? (Jeremy Richardson, remember.) Though a surprise later this summer is still certainly possible, the general expectation is that every remaining member of the class will qualify. That is a stunning development, particularly for a program whose classes hemorrhaged recruits like few in the country under its previous regime.
It’s also a huge boon for Delaine, who’s been universally pegged as an athletic freak (6-5, 225) with star potential if he can keep polishing his play. No offense to all the JUCO defensive line coaches out there, but that development’s going to happen a lot faster and a lot better with Delaine on campus and working with Tracy Rocker than elsewhere.
The other juicy tidbit from the Goldberg report is that Clark is already on campus. If Auburn did enroll every other member of the class including Shon Coleman, someone would unfortunately have to be in line for a grayshirt. (And since I’m not aware of any players who expected a grayshirt up front, a la Robert Cooper in 2009, this could be a problem.) The consensus on the Auburn Interwebs has been that if it did come to a grayshirt, Clark was the most likely candidate, what with him being a punter who’s even-odds or worse to redshirt this year anyway.
Yeah, you can nevermind that as well. Either Coleman’s delaying enrollment by a year (or paying his own way), or there’s a non-qualifier out there somewhere, or someone else is taking the grayshirt.