Time was, and a recent time it was, when Appalachian State, like every other FCS school (the coaches still call them I-AAs), had to wait until the big boys had finalized their class of commitments before the FCS programs could cull through the leftovers.
Invariably, borderline talents would wait to see if an offer would come from an N.C. State or a Clemson before finally settling for a Furman or an Elon.
The Mountaineers, though, are shaking up that strategy this season, simply by making kids want to come to Boone.
They already have three verbal commitments—all big offensive linemen—after their addition this week of Butler High’s Kendall Lamm. Lamm, at 6-foot-6 and 265 pounds, joins Graham Fisher (6-2, 275) and Kalan Jones (6-4, 275).
All of these players were on the watchlists of some major schools, but decided they’d rather remove the uncertainty and go ahead and commit to coach Jerry Moore’s program.
By doing so, they can be almost certain of three things. They will have a chance to play early ( ASU will have as many as five slots for OLs in its incoming class), play for a national championship, and play in Boone. None of these are bad options.
This kind of thing can snowball. Appalachian, with its three national titles in four years, is in a unique position among FCS schools. Now it’s taking advantage of it.