On the eve of National Signing Day, Missouri head football coach Barry Odom is making waves. Brendan Scales, the No. 2 prospect in the state of Missouri, has committed to the Tigers. Scales is a 6’4″, 230-pound TE from Lafayette high school in Ballwin, Missouri.
Scales was previously committed to Nick Saban at Alabama, but flipped his commitment to Mizzou Tuesday night. This marks the second player Missouri has nabbed from Alabama in the past week, as former Crimson Tide WR Chris Black previously announced he would be joining Missouri’s 2016 class as a graduate transfer.
According to a tweet by Gabe DeArmond, Scales said, “Ever since I’ve been able to comprehend what college football was, I’ve always wanted to play for Missouri.”
It appeared for a while as though Scales would not get that opportunity. He was reportedly disappointed when Missouri offered him a scholarship as a defensive end, rather than his preferred position of tight end. He was quoted in a story on stltoday.com as being “a little bit salty,” that his dream school wanted him to play defense instead of offense.
As a result, he planned to take his talents to Tuscaloosa. Alabama wanted him as a TE, and he was floored by the opportunity to play for such a storied program. However, after the Crimson Tide offered him a scholarship as part of their 2016 recruiting class, they broke the dial on the shadiness meter.
Alabama asked Scales if he would be willing to “grayshirt” his freshman year. Grayshirting is an increasingly popular practice among big-time college football programs, wherein a recruit delays his enrollment to the university until the spring semester, effectively delaying his eligibility clock by one year.
It’s basically what the Cubs did to Kris Bryant, except the college football version.
Now, it would be one thing if the Tide had made this request of Scales back when he was originally committing. Instead, they waited until the day before National Signing Day to drop the bomb on him.
These programs basically commit to a player, but then continue to stock their cupboard with better options until there’s no room in the recruiting class for guys with whom
they’ve already made verbal agreements. Then, they casually ask them if it’s cool if they wait an entire extra year before joining the team.
Well, Scales wasn’t feeling it. And Barry Odom swooped in.
Odom quickly established his interest in Scales—as a tight end—and convinced him that Missouri was the best place for his future.
According to a tweet by Frank Cusumano, the Scales family said, “Coach Odom and his staff are exceptional and laid out a clear plan for him.”
Barry Odom looks to be handling himself just fine in the recruiting game, despite being thrust into his position so late in the recruiting cycle. Missouri is expected to sign 19 recruits during National Signing Day on Wednesday. Scales’ commitment reportedly moves Missouri’s 2016 class rank from 51st in the nation to 49th.