December 7, 2013

Rivals recruiting analyst loves what Tulane is doing for 2014

On the surface, Tulane's 2014 recruiting class is not much different from last year's under coach Curtis Johnson. It also does not feature a higher percentage of three-star recruits than some of Bob Toledo's later groups.

But Southwest recruiting analyst Jason Howell is convinced Johnson and his staff have done a premier job assembling this class. Never mind that only five of the 23 or 24 members have more than three starts after seven boasted that many last February. He lauds the staff's eye for talent.

"When it comes to this class, you just see them recruiting very smartly at home," he said. "They know New Orleans. They have gotten in on guys on the ground floor and offered them early. When (Mandeville quarterback) Glen Cuillette committed, he was known by pretty much no one outside of the city of New Orleans. He had a terrific year."

Howell is high on other Tulane commitments, too, including West Jefferson athlete Niguel Veal (5-feet-11, 175 pounds).

"I love that kid," he said. "I saw him in the last game of the regular season against John Ehret, and it was just unreal what he does. The thing he brings to the table is pure speed. He's not the biggest guy, but he can run away from most people, and he's also very quick and just has a great burst that allows him to be a threat whether it's at receiver or cornerback or in special situations when you try to get him the ball on handoffs or screens and the return game. He can do a whole lot of things and be a playmaker from day 1 in my opinion.

"Nothing against what Tulane has on the field, but he's a guy that can step in and be a difference-maker for them really early in his career."

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