–> Follow @Tony Liebert on Twitter
The Gophers’ historic 2023 class got a big addition Saturday night. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania RB Marquese Williams verbally committed to the Maroon & Gold over top offers from Texas A&M, Notre Dame and Penn State. 247sports ranks the 5-foot-8 RB as the 37th best player at his position nationally and 14th best overall player in PA. As the 496th ranked player overall, Williams is the second-highest-rated recruit in Minnesota’s 2023 class.
@GopherFootball I’m ready to work💯@Coach_Fleck @UMcoachburns @KirkCiarrocca @RyanBurnsMN pic.twitter.com/QciYt8yO2i
— Marquese Williams (@QueseWilliams26) June 19, 2022
Who is Marquese Williams?:
Marquese Williams is a soon-to-be senior student-athlete at Bishop McDevitt High School in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Bishop McDevitt is one of the best high school football programs in the country, having produced elite RB talents, LeSean McCoy and Ricky Waters. After rushing for 1,019 yards and 15 touchdowns as a freshman playing varsity football, Williams has been in the spotlight ever since. He quickly rose up the recruiting ranks, picking up top offers from Texas A&M, Notre Dame, Penn State, Michigan State, Arkansas and Virginia Tech. After a dominant junior campaign with 1,800+ yards from scrimmage and 31 total TDs, every school was after him. He ultimately settled on the Gophers after his official visit over the weekend.
- Scouting Report:
It makes sense, why so many schools were after Marquese Williams. He has everything that you want from a Big Ten running back. Listed at 5-foot-8, 175 pounds he is a bit undersized, but his skills are ELITE. With 250+ yards as a receiver and five TDs last season, he proved he can be a more than effective pass catcher. Williams makes running the football look easy, and as he continues to grow into his body, he will only get better.
**High School Football Hudl Highlights:
247sports rates Williams as a three-star prospect, but he was a four-star only a few months ago, so at the end of the day do rankings even matter?. He is a big-time talent and Gophers fans should be ecstatic about his commitment. After his freshman season, producing at a high-level high school he built up an insane level of hype, but after not growing much past his current frame, it cooled off slightly. With that being said, no matter how big Williams is he is the level of RB talent that the Gophers needed. After losing Bucky Irving and Ky Thomas as the future of their backfield in the offseason. A combination of incoming freshman Zach Evans and 2023 recruits Marquese Williams and Darius Taylor makes the Gophers’ future RB room look tantalizing.
What is next?:
Williams gave the Gophers 16 total commitments for the 2023 class, and it doesn’t look like they’re slowing down anytime soon. They now have the 10th-ranked recruiting class in the entire country, yes you read that right.
After having 6+ scholarship players enter the transfer portal in the spring, and none being replaced in the portal, I think we could see an abnormally big class. I expect Minnesota to quickly top their total of 18 players in the 2022 class.
Full 2023 class:
- OL Reese Tripp
- OL Jerome Williams
- RB Darius Taylor
- CB Za’Quan Bryan
- TE Pierce Walsh
- DL Martin Owusu
- OL Greg Johnson
- QB Drew Viotto
- LB Alex Elliot
- TE Sam Peters
- OT De’Eric Mister
- LB Tre Tre McCutchin
- S Kerry Brown
- DE Karter Menz
- S Karrison Monroe
- RB Marquese Williams