Hutchinson quarterback McKinley Anderson is one of the prized recruits for the St. Cloud State football program this recruiting season.
Anderson led the Tigers to a Class 4A state title last season and went 23-1 in his career as a starter.
The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Anderson didn’t spend much time throwing the ball for Hutchinson, however. The Tigers kept the ball on the ground as much as possible with Anderson getting a lot of yardage himself on option plays.
Anderson had 14 carries for 106 yards in a TD in the Tigers’ 28-14 state semifinal win over Becker. Three of his teammates also signed with NSIC teams today in fullback Evan Metag (Bemidji State), running back Tory Adams (Augustana) and linebacker Shaun Schindler (MSU-Mankato).
Anderson is looking forward to learning from SCSU senior quarterback Phillip Klaphake this season.
“It’s going to be different for me because I was always under center running the option,” Anderson said. “It’s going to be different in the pistol offense there. I hope (Klaphake) can teach me a lot.
“I liked how the players were really welcoming at St. Cloud. The program is very good. I really related to the players and the coaches.”
Anderson and Ben Diedrick of Kimberly (Wis.) High School) were the two quarterbacks the Huskies signed.
* The Huskies have two junior college transfers who came in this semester. They are Ellsworth (Iowa) Community College offensive lineman Jordan Harrington (6-5, 275) and Central Lakes Community College linebacker Jordan Bialke. Both are expected to compete for starting spots next season. Harrington is a tackle who is solid in pass protection, according to SCSU offensive line coach and co-offensive coordinator Doug Patterson.
*Patterson said Matt Schmiesing is recovering well from a torn ACL in his knee that he suffered late in the season. Guard Rafael Saez also had to undergo a surgery this offseason.
“Our biggest issue is that we have some guys hurt right now, but they’ll be ready by August,” Patterson said.
Patterson is very high on redshirt guard Andrew Pollard (6-4, 285) from Forest Lake.
“He’ll be in the mix for a starting job next year,” Patterson said. “He’s a kid who can maul people.”
Patterson is high on local walk-ons in Rocori’s Kyle Schramel (6-7, 310) and Sauk Rapids’ Trevor Waldorf (6-2, 280).
“Schramel’s pretty athletic, but he’s raw. He can run, though. Waldorf is an inside guy. He’s a center/guard guy who can play inside. He’s tough. I think they can play for us down the road,” Patterson said.
* SCSU defensive coordinator Jim Louis is very high on defensive back Keyshawn Davis out of Milwaukee’s Rufus King High School.
“He was a running back, quarterback and safety in high school. He’s strong and he’s ready to play right now,” Louis said. “We seem him playing at strong safety. He could even be an outside linebacker. He’s fast and physical. He comes from a program that isn’t a traditional powerhouse in Milwaukee. He did a lot of things for his team.”
Louis was also high on linebackers Dom McDew (Apple Valley) and Nathan Snider (Minnewaska).
“Dom was the MVP of that team. He’s a raw linebacker, but he’s really physical for a kid who’s 6-1, 220. He runs really good,” Louis said. “He’s going to have a big-time upside and play pretty early in his career.
“Snider is a physical run defender. He holds the state record for most tackles in a game with 19 and in his career with 276. He’s a bigger kid who played mostly against the run. We’ll see how he handles pass coverage.”
Bialke, the JUCO transfer from Central Lakes, is a native of Foley. Louis is hoping for big things right away from him.
“He was an All-American kid at Central Lakes. He has a good shot at starting next year,” Louis said. “He’s really instinctful. He has a ways to go with learning our system. But he’s shown he’s a good person and a hard worker. You expect that from a kid from Foley.”
* SCSU defensive line coach Steve Grimit likes the five players the Huskies signed up front. The group includes Herbert Betancourt (6-2, 230) of Chicago, Nick Dorsey (6-5, 245) of Fridley, Gabe Eggebrecht (6-0, 215) of Brookings, S.D., Liam Kirwan (6-0, 260) of Woodstock, Ill., and David Maule (6-2, 260) of Watertown, Wis.
“It’s a good group,” Grimit said. “We have a good mix between interior and edge guys. Maule might play right away. Betancourt is an edge guy, the same with Dorsey. All of them have explosiveness and quickness. We always really recruit athletic, explosive guys. That’s our theme. We’re not read and react guys and big 300-pounders that sit there and wait. We attack first. This group fits what we were looking for.”
*SCSU begins spring practice April 1. The team’s spring game will be Saturday, April 27.
*SCSU cornerback Marvin Matthews and defensive end Jeff Bias will sit out spring practice so they can use up their last semester of eligibility in the fall. Matthews missed last year with a sports hernia and is recovering well from the injury.
*SCSU head coach Scott Underwood said the Huskies had about 60 players in for visits during recruiting. The Huskies have six walk-ons in the recruit list.
*SCSU wide receiver Chad Peterson underwent offseason surgery for turf toe. He’ll be ready for next season.