It’s often said that games are won and lost up front and if that’s the case, then the Grand Valley State Lakers put themselves in strong position for the next few years with their 2012 class.
The Lakers started off the class with two offensive tackles, Cameron Hobbs (Sanford Meridian) and Zach Jolly (Brighton), who both had a number of Division-1 schools interested, and in fact, Jolly nearly landed some late MAC offers. Both Hobbs, at 6’5, 250-lbs and Jolly at 6’6, 260-lbs, have weight to add, but that is ideal since the Lakers rarely play true freshmen.
On the defensive line, the Lakers picked up five new bodies and from several states: Blake Cook (Mason, MI), Dylan Heyveart (Mishawaka, IN), Joe Morans (Loveland, OH), Ian Sampson (Carmel, IN), and Scott Tackett (Holland, MI). Tackett is one to watch. At 6’5, 230-lbs, he has a nice frame and put together a strong senior season. Morans had a good workout at GVSU and Sampson and Heyveart come from two of the winningest programs in the Hoosier State.
GVSU landed two players who had Division-1 opportunities this year. Orchard Lake St. Mary’s linebacker David Talley held an Akron offer and tight end Joe Warner from Brother Rice was offered by Buffalo. Warner is also one of two tight ends in the class, joining Macomb Dakota’s Jeremy Byers.
At the skill positions, Sean Charette from Lake Orion is a four-year varsity starter who isn’t the biggest guy at 5’10, 175-lbs, but is an accurate passer with good footwork, accuracy, and he’s a gamer. He’ll have some talent to throw to as the Lakers brought in four receivers. Jake Vento (Farmington Hills Harrison) was one of the top receivers on a state title team as a junior, but moved to quarterback as a senior and will head back to receiver at GVSU. Urston Smith of Elkhart Memorial (Ind.) is a good sized 6’2, 185-lb kid with leaping ability and athleticism. Troy Sassick of Pontiac Notre Dame Prep (Mich.) is just the type of big body (6’4, 195) the Lakers like at the position and Kevin Vicari of Grand Rapids Catholic Central played for former Laker offensive coordinator Todd Kolster in high school and one of his position coaches was former Laker receiver Blake Smolen. Charette will also have a talented back to hand off to in hard nosed Terrell Dorsey, a 6’0, 210-lb back who had Division-1 interest, but was hampered by injuries.
Warren Michigan Collegiate was kind to the Lakers this year, sending two of their best players, multi-talented Tommie Bush, a 6’3, 220-lb high school running back who could play a number of positions at the next level and Gabe Sanders, a speedy high school quarterback who projects to defensive back.
The secondary will be in good hands with Sanders and fellow corner Jacques Christian (South Lake, MI) along with a talented trio of safeties, Nate Cole (Bloomfield Hills Lahser), Brandon Delk (Kalamazoo Central, MI) and Joe Robbins (Petoskey, MI). Robbins may be one of the best players in the class. He’s a great athlete with good ball skills at 6’3, 200-lbs. Delk is one of the fastest, and Cole is a technician with good ball skills and football smarts.