2018’s final signing day a quiet one for Dantonio, MSU football

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The traditional February National Signing Day came and went with very few surprises for Mark Dantonio and Michigan State. The day did, however, bring swinging misses on two of the Spartans’ most desirable targets, missing out on Tommy Bush and Habakkuk Baldonado.

Bush, a four-star wide receiver from Texas chose to head to national champion runner-up Georgia, and Baldonado, a three-star defensive end from Florida decided to join Pat Narduzzi at Pittsburgh.

After the Spartans signed 20 players during the early December signing period, they added three more to its 2018 class Wednesday morning. MSU got a letter of intent from the three-star receiver out of Las Vegas Bishop Gorman Jalen Nailor. They also added Dan VanOpstall, the offensive lineman from Jenison and athlete David Kruse from Lowell, with both signing as preferred walk-ons.

Nailor, the 5-foot-11, 185-pound wideout announced on Saturday that he would choose MSU over Wisconsin, Arizona and Nebraska among others. Nailor and MSU signee Jacob Isaia were high school teammates at Bishop Gorman.

VanOpstall, the the 6-foot-6, 255-pound offensive lineman accepted a preferred walk-on spot back in December. VanOpstall, an Associated Press Division 1-2 All-State Honorable Mention, was offered by Army, Indiana State and Western Illinois.  

David Kruse played quarterback this past year for the Red Arrows and will become the third Kruse brother to join Michigan State athletics. Most recently, Kruse’s older brother Connor spent four years at MSU as an offensive lineman from 2010-2014. His other brother Danny is a redshirt-freshman wrestler for the Spartans.

The Spartans also added William Przystup, a punter out of Oviedo, Florida. Przystup averaged 42.1 yards per punt as a senior this year, including a season-long 62-yarder. With Jake Hartbarger graduating after next season, Przystup will have ample time to learn under the experienced punter who averaged 42 yards per punt, including pinning teams inside the 20-yard line 28 times this season.

Of the 21 MSU signees, the most notable is Kalon Gervin, the defensive back out of Cass Tech. Gervin, an Under Armour All-American and early enrollee, was fielding scholarship offers from nearly 40 different schools and ended this year rated a four-star and top-200 recruit according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. Gervin was named the Division 1-2 Player of the Year in the state of Michigan by the Associated Press.

I think he’s a guy that will have an opportunity to play pretty quick,” Dantonio said. “He [Gervin] has all the makings of a great corner.”

Remember the name Jeslord Boateng down the road. The three-star linebacker out of Dublin, Ohio collected 17 offers and could very well end up emerging as one of the best players in the Spartans’ 2018 class. Boateng has the track speed to play as a weak-side defensive end but also has the ball skills to drop back in coverage as a linebacker. Coming in at 6-foot-2, 210 pounds, Boateng’s play will be limited early while he improves in the weight room, but the Spartans may just have a diamond in the rough with the linebacker.

When you watch him move, he doesn’t play in sections, it’s all smooth,” Dantonio said of Boateng. “He has huge upside because of his length and his athletic ability.”

Michigan State has now signed 24 players to its 2018 class and ranks 27th in the country, according to Rivals’ composite rankings. MSU’s spring game has a tentative date set for Apr. 7 and there are talks in place that the Spartans may play their first spring scrimmage under the year-old lights at Spartan Stadium.

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