Charlie Strong has been known to close extremely well with his recruiting classes since taking over at Louisville. Strong and recruiting coordinator Clint Hurtt have made it known that they feel that they can get any kid to commit if they just get a chance to get in front of his parents, and get him on campus for a visit. Let's take a look at some of the guys Charlie might try to land this Christmas season.
Santa Strong's Christmas list (Guys Charlie has a very good chance to land)
Quick is the big fish of the class. Quick is the type of talent that Kentucky typically only sees once every ten years or so. Unlike most top prospects, Quick has been very upfront about who leads for his services as well as what he is looking for from the teams recruiting him. As of now Louisville leads for Quick over Ohio State.
The move to the ACC has seemed to peek the interest of a handful of guys. Kelsey seems to be looking at Louisville and USF to play his college ball. Willie Taggart isn't Charlie Strong, but he will make a splash in Florida this month and Kelsey could be a gem for his class. The decommitment of Jacarthy Mack could be to free up space for Kelsey.
Clint Hurtt is originally from New York, so it makes sense that he is the lead recruiter for the Guard from New York. Pittsburgh has put on it's full court press to land Officer, but the fact that Louisville will need to fill two spots on the line next year could help Louisville. As well as the fact that Strong has not been shy about playing freshman on the line. Paul Chryst will be hard to beat because of his history at Wisconsin. Hurtt is a master at what he does, but this would be overly impressive if he lands him.
In my personal opinion, Sean Paul is ours to lose. Paul has had UofL listed all year and has held off from committing to Wake Forest since the summer. Paul's approach to his recruitment (waiting until his season is over) is what Strong seems to go for more often then not. Paul was the first name that I heard mentioned after the ACC invite and I feel strongly that he will be the cornerback that Strong brings in for this class.
Thomas is an undersized defensive end/outside linebacker out of Miami. He doesn't fit the mold of the ends that Hurtt and Strong have brought in recently, but he is more than athletic enough to compensate. Thomas has always listed Louisville and should be taking his officials soon. I like our chances due to the fact that he hasn't visited anyone yet.
If you're looking for the effect of the move to the ACC look no further. Meadows has had UofL listed all season but it's been obvious that we were towards the bottom of that list. All of sudden he scheduled an official visit for next weekend. Louisville will be battling WVU and Oklahoma for the big tackle.
Maquedies Bain is much more than an amazing name and potential CC meme. He's a dominant nose tackle from the Miami area. Bain has two official visits left to take and one of them will more than likely go to Miami. Bain tweeted that the Cards would "smash" in the ACC after the announcement was made. Just having an opinion on the program is a good sign for us.
Charlies "wish list" (Guys that are long shots but possible)
Like John Harvey-Clemons last year, it would be huge just to get him on campus.
Robbins has helped fill the void left by Gerrod Holliman and Andrew Johnson for the last two years at Southridge High. That could help at least get Charlie a foot in the door.
Munger has been an Ohio State lean all year but rumor has it that he didn't show up for his official visit. It would be a major coup for Charlie to land the massive defensive tackle.
This super athletic wideout/safety could be listed above but I think he's Florida State's to lose. UofL will stay on him in the hopes that FSU doesn't have a scholarship for him.
There are a handful of other guys that Strong has turned up the heat on. Whether we like it or not, some of the guys that have been committed since the summer might not have their offers honored due to being recruited over. Strong has done so since he started here and to be honest, it's just as common as players decommitting from a school. This class should end up with 14-16 players and it should be a really good one.