Hometown: Lakeland, FL
School: Victory Christian
24/7: 78; two stars
ESPN: 79; three stars; #43 ATH
Rivals: 5.7; three stars; #29 S
Scout: two stars
Other offers: Wisconsin, Mississippi, Temple, Central Florida, Tulane, FAU, Western Kentucky
Demeitre Brim (pronounced, I think, like Demetri) was the second recruit to commit to UVA, and it was a weird recruitment. It might still be, but I hope not. UVA wasn't the first school to offer Brim, but it was the first BCS school to do so, and after a couple days and talking with a few recruits who'd already been to UVA, Brim jumped onboard.
At the time, he was something of an unknown quantity to a lot of people. Not a high-profile guy. His commitment to UVA helped change that, though, and other schools came in with offers and camp invites. Quite a few other schools. Wisconsin's offer was post-commit, as was I think Ole Miss's, and Miami was all over him to camp in Coral Gables. All the attention, as well as some noncommittal-sounding quotes from Brim, had UVA fans worried that Brim had offered a placeholder commit. (Every year there are recruits somewhere who say they're "still committed" but "looking around" or "75%." What it means is they want the coaches to hold their spot while they check out to see if there's anything better. Occasionally this results in pulled scholarships.)
Brim stuck to his word at least long enough to take a visit to UVA two months after committing sight unseen. This was good news because when you're one-on-one with Mike London at the most beautiful school in the country on a terrific summer day, there's nobody who can resist the spell. Brim came away with his commitment solidified, and ended up turning down Miami's camp invites.
What had Miami so anxious to get him on campus, and other schools jumping into the fray after his commitment? ESPN says: "He has an ideal set of measurables coupled with speed, quickness and range." Their scouting report describes a player who's more of an athlete than a football player at this point:
With Brim you are getting supreme athleticism, but very little discipline. ... He must be careful as a tackler as he generally looks to make the big hit instead of being a sound, wrap-up tackler. ... He has speed and range and is a very physical player that needs to home and refine skills to maximize his talent.Sounds like a shoulder-tackler who will try to slam opponents to the ground via sheer momentum with his arms at his sides. (And this highlight video is bloody 16 minutes long, but the first part of it shows quite a bit of shoulder-tackling.) Corey Mosley is notorious for that. I hate it. Pet peeve aside, most of the rest of that evaluation is full of praise for Brim's athleticism, and recognition skills to boot, always a necessity for a safety. Sounds similar to the reports on Javanti Sparrow, actually.
Brim transferred in to Victory Christian some time during last summer, and led them to the state semifinals as both starting safety and starting quarterback, and put up some decent numbers behind center, too. Decent enough to be the Class 1B Player of the Year. This was actually kind of an out-of-nowhere performance because Brim was thought of as a question mark, not a top player on his team, going into the season, which explains the late-ish start to his recruiting.
And yes, it was a strange recruitment - not just from a UVA perspective as I've mentioned, but because his early commitment and then teams getting ahold of his game tapes from 2010 threw his offer list out of whack. It's hard to evaluate based on offers like I like to. It's even harder because two of the scouting services gave him the two stars of doom, and the other two are very high on him. ESPN's and 24/7's very similar-looking numbers are really two different scales and actually represent diametric opposites. 79 is the same grade that ESPN gave Kwontie and Michael Moore; the 78 from 24/7 is the lowest number they've given any of our commits (that they've actually rated.)
Because of the attention Brim was getting after his commitment in April, I think I'll lean toward the enthusiastic Rivals/ESPN rating rather than the Scout/24/7 thumbs-down. Scout is typically lazy and doesn't really revisit a prospect once they've taken their look, and the two-star rating came after Brim's commitment but before the attention really heated up. Interpretation: the guy committed to UVA over weak-ass offers from Sun Belt schools, just slap a two-star up and ignore it the rest of the year. Scout is known to do that. They still have yet to even add Ryan Doull to the freakin' database. So my opinion is that it looks like Mike London successfully unearthed a diamond in the rough - a horribly overused phrase, but appropriate here.
However, the diamond needs polish. Like any diamond that comes out of whatever the rough is. Yes, Brim's a shoulder-tackler, and that drives me crazy. He'll need to come to grips with the fact that you have to wrap up in college because nobody you're tackling weighs 140 pounds anymore. Some guys never do. Regardless, most guys like Brim who get by on instincts and athleticism need a year to get the football skills in order. Brim should be no exception, especially since he's a safety which requires a lot of diagnosing offensive formations, systems, etc.. By the time he gets here, both Rodney McLeod and Corey Mosley will have graduated, and the safety situation scares the bejabbers out of me. But Brim will still need time to point his athleticism in the right direction. Once he does, he has more of it than most of the safety options on the roster, though.
Looking for part 2 of the baseball recruits series? I've decided that'll be Wednesday. We crown the Cavalier of the Year on Monday, and the recruiting board gets its badly needed attention on Tuesday. The football recruit series then continues on Thursday with Wil Wahee.