Sir Isaac Newton’s third law of physics states that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. And while Newton wasn’t known for his love of football recruiting, his principles can easily be applied to the reaction a major commit can have on the recruiting landscape.
In recent days, the commitment of four-star quarterback Maalik Murphy to Texas sent ripple effects through the college football recruiting landscape. He becomes the fourth pledge out of the top five pro-style quarterbacks in the 2022 class only a few weeks after the final signing day of the 2021 class.
Today, we examine the other top pro-style quarterbacks who could be impacted by his decision and the sped-up timeline for QBs in this class to make their commitments.
Murphy’s decision did not directly impact Ty Simpson because the four-star quarterback from Martin (Tenn.) Westview has Alabama and Clemson as his two favorites and plans to commit on Feb. 19. Simpson’s impending decision will have implications down the line, though, as more quarterbacks continue to come off the board at a rapid pace.
Those close to both Alabama and Clemson feel guardedly optimistic about landing Simpson, who has clammed up in recent days about which school leads heading into his decision. For other quarterbacks still waiting to make their decision, Simpson’s pledge could have a significant impact.
A.J. Duffy looks to be steering clear of a major impact from Murphy’s decision as well. But Oregon was one of Murphy’s top schools and it made the final four list for Duffy, who has the Ducks along with Michigan State, Penn State and Florida State as his other finalists.
A source said Duffy is not overly concerned about the Nittany Lions and the Seminoles already having quarterback commits in the class and that the Spartans have definitely appealed to him throughout the recruiting process as well. But is all this a smokescreen of sorts? Duffy, who recently transferred from Moreno Valley (Calif.) Rancho Verde to Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy, has had Arizona State high on his list for a while and to not have the Sun Devils on his final four was a big surprise.
The recruitment of Cade Klubnik is really interesting and could be directly impacted by Murphy’s decision among others in recent weeks. The Austin (Texas) Westlake standout had some talks with Texas A&M coach Jimbo Fisher but then the Aggies landed four-star Conner Weigman. Klubnik is right in town but Murphy was targeted by first-year Texas coach Steve Sarkisian and the Gardena (Calif.) Serra recruit quickly pulled the trigger.
That’s not to say Texas or Texas A&M could not circle back for a second quarterback in this class but Klubnik now has some other intriguing options. After Simpson picks Alabama or Clemson (or a surprise selection to another school), either the Crimson Tide or the Tigers will be looking for a QB and Klubnik is still available.
Then there is Auburn, which already has QB Holden Geriner committed but has shown interest in Klubnik along with other schools. With Klubnik not jumping on a commitment yet, some programs toward the top of his list have taken others. That could lead to a commitment or it could lead to other opportunities presenting themselves in the coming weeks.
When asked which schools were showing him the most interest, Bailey said Alabama. That could have significant domino effects in the coming days as Simpson is prepared to commit and Klubnik could be in the picture as well at some point.
But the Gordo, Ala., four-star prospect is another interesting name to watch as LSU, Miami, South Carolina, Louisville, Mississippi State and Georgia Tech are some other programs involved with him.