I’ve covered few, if any, prospects that have changed their commits as quickly as Peoples allegedly did earlier today. Peoples is a 6-foot-6, 300 lineman who reportedly committed to Utah earlier today after initially committing to BYU on Wednesday. Peoples denied the earlier report, stating that he’s not made up his mind, although he’s now strongly considering both offers.
Peoples flew under the radar, being from such a small town, but was offered by BYU coaches after his performance at junior day this past Wednesday. Peoples committed just minutes after receiving the offer, and was assumed to hold to that commit until he signed with BYU in February.
BYU told its prospects before junior day that there were only eight more scholarships available for 2013 and would therefore be very selective in offering prospects. Indeed BYU cut down quite a bit on the usual amount of offers it gives out after junior day, but still found one for Peoples largely based on his one day performance.
It’s safe to say that Peoples is very impressive when performing live and proved just that at the All-Poly camp the following week. During the All-Poly camp, Utah and Utah State coaches were all over him — eventually setting up visits which the then-BYU commit readily agreed to.
Peoples took his unofficial visit to Utah on Monday and committed to the school following the visit according to scout.com. According to rivals.com, however, Peoples is still undecided http://utah.rivals.com/content.asp?CID=1376798
It’s been well-noted that Utah often offers prospects following BYU during the recruiting process, but it’s hardly alone with this practice. BYU fans term this as a “lazy” and even a “dirty” practice, while Ute fans regard it as just another part of being a rival program.
Utah didn’t rely soley and maybe not at all on BYU’s evaluation with Peoples, however. Coach Kyle Whittingham did his due diligence attending the All-Poly camp, watching him like a hawk during drills before taking him aside to give him a recruiting pitch. He obviously made a big impression and moved quickly– inviting him on an unofficial visit while offering him a scholarship a mere two days after the All-Poly camp concluded.
Lazy and dirty pool by Whittingham? It’s my opinion that until a recruit sends in that national letter of intent everyone is fair game in recruiting wars between rivals.
It should be noted that recruiting is a tough process for any young man who isn’t well-versed in the process. Peoples has obviously garnered a lot of sudden attention and is likely feeling a bit overwhelmed by the current process.