Seantrel Henderson Key for Minnesota Football

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By Mike Gallagher

You might not have heard of Seantrel Henderson.  But if you follow the college recruiting scene at all, you’re probably jumping out of your chair just by reading his name.  But for those of you not familiar, here’s what he brings to the table.

Henderson is a 6-8, 301 pound offensive tackle currently attending Cretin Derham-Hall in Saint Paul, MN.  He is an AAU basketball star, but more importantly for the Gophers, he is Rivals.com number one recruit in the nation.  As an offensive tackle, that is a mighty accomplishment.

You may recognize the names of a few other Rivals number one prospects; Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin, and Jimmy Clausen.  Ringing any bells?

Even more important to the Gophers football team is the fact that he is actually considering the U as an option.  The other five schools rumored to be in the running?  Florida, Notre Dame, USC (they already have commitments from the second and third best national prospects), Oklahoma, and Ohio State.

On that list, the team that stands out like a sore thumb is the University of Minnesota.  Obviously the prestige of the other programs dwarfs that of the Gophers, but only Henderson is the judge of that, and come signing day, only he will make that decision.

Obviously rumors have swirled about Henderson liking this school and not liking that school, but let’s throw that out because we can speculate until the sky starts falling and still will not know.  But think of the ramifications of Henderson coming to Minnesota.

All the problems for the Gophers offensively have started up front this year.  The Gophers, following pathetic performances versus Illinois (L 35-32), and South Dakota State (W 16-13), are now 112th in the nation in yards/gm.  Adam Weber is getting no time and that has left him 96th in the nation in passing efficiency, and 378th in yards.  The receivers the Gophers are left with sans Eric Decker can’t get open in two seconds, they need time that they’re not getting.

With Henderson, the offensive line could start rebuilding, and that would improve the Gophers in every area.  He is ranked as the second best pass blocker in the nation, and in any video you watch, he manhandles the guy across from him (http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=4222005).

Adam Weber (or Marqueis Gray http://thesportsbank.wpengine.com/minnesota-golden-gophers/eric-decker-out-for-season-adam-weber-should-follow/) would get more time, the receivers more time to get open, and Kevin Whaley, who has performed well at times this year, could get some holes opened for him rather than seeing a mass of humanity every carry.  Henderson is a guy that you line up against the opponents best pass rusher, and a guy you can build a run game behind.

That being said, let’s not get too carried away, too many times the Gophers have let top recruits walk right out of their backyard, including one of Henderson’s good friends and former teammates, Notre Dame WR Michael Floyd.

floyd

The implication when Tim Brewster was hired was that that kind of thing would not happen anymore.  Floyd leaving hurt the Gophers, especially looking at the team now, a playmaking receiver would be nice.

But having a rivals.com #1 talent walk out of the state would completely discredit the main reason Brewster was given this job.  Brewster has had two of his number one targets walk out on him already, and two may be a fluke, but three is a definite trend.

With the loss to Illinois two weeks ago and the pewtred performance against FCS powerhouse (if there is such a thing) SDSU in which the Gophers failed to score an offensive touchdown, it has officially fallen apart for Tim Brewster’s squad on the field.  Should Henderson walk away from his home town team for greener D-1 pastures and be the third top Gopher target to do so, surely it’s all fallen apart for Brewster off the field as well.

I completely understand that it’s a number one national prospect and it may be unrealistic to expect him to come to a Gopher team that has shown him absolutely no signs of hope the last few weeks on the field.  But he has kept Minnesota on his list for a reason, and knowing that, Tim Brewster should put the full court press on this kid.

Henderson definitely wouldn’t solve all of the Gophers problems, but he would be a GREAT place to start.

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Comments

  1. Henderson is a great player and he’s going to be awesome in college but he isn’t coming to the University of MN. It will be like Michael Floyd except Henderson is even better. The offers are better elsewhere, he’ll get recognized more and Brewster has failed to make the team better each year. I don’t know how someone can look at this season and say from beginning to end the Gophers have gotten better.

  2. Whatever happened to loyalty in sports? If this guy is so good, why wouldn’t he want to stay & help his hometown team? Maybe I’m old school, but if I was a great player I would like nothing more than to play for the teams I grew up rooting for… & would appreciate the challenge of leading them to glory once again!

  3. I think Henderson should come to Minnesota, the Gophers are commited to winning with their new stadium and you get one blue chip player more will follow. I hope he dose not go to Notre Dame, they are way over rated. The Big Ten sucks, and with Michigan down the Gophers have an oppertunity to fill that void. Besides USC, Ohio State and Florida do not deserve to win anymore. Give the Gophers the talent and we will beat their punk ass

  4. USC, Ohio State and Florida don’t deserve to win anymore? I’ll admit I hate Ohio State as much as the next person, but the Gophers need to start
    developing skill players more – think, when Barber, Maroney and Jackson
    played tail back for us, they never really improved from season to season.
    Our line is strong pretty much every year, but until we start developing our
    skill position players we’ll just have sit behind the Notre Dame’s, Florida’s
    and USC’s of college football.

  5. I understand, that is a catch 22, Minnesota was 1-8 in 1958 and won a National Title in 1960 with the help of Carl Eller, Sandy Stephans and Tom Brown. Enter- JD PRIDE QB from Totino Grace is Seantrel Henderson’s best friend and he is comming to the U of M, you through in a couple of key defensive players and who knows. All you need is a couple of key players and you can turn things around, football is based a lot on emotion, and talent so lets be posititive and do our part to encourage Seantrel to come to Minnesota and leave a legacey in his home state. Ohio has plenty of good players and hell no Iowa no way do they deserve this guy. Bring in Seantrel and lets kick the Hawkeyes punk ass 42-0 next November 27th at TCF Bank Stadium

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