Former Army OC talks recruiting at Cal Poly

Former Army OC talks recruiting at Cal Poly

One of the first things Rich Ellerson did upon arriving to West Point is fire offensive coordinator Tim Walsh. Walsh served in the capacity for two years and, after being relieved of his duties, said he would have never came to Army if he knew it was a two-year stint. Army's former play-caller went on to accept the vacant position left at Cal Poly by Ellerson.

It's not quite sour grapes, but Walsh did take a small swipe at Ellerson in regards to recruiting. Walsh recently announced 14 new signees, which will make up the Caly Poly class of 2013. He told the San Luis Obispo Tribune that five of the players he identified while recruiting for Army.

Only two of the recruits were recruited by Ellerson before he traveled east to the banks of the Hudson River.

"If a guy had been offered by Rich and Rich's staff, I would have lived up to the offer," Walsh said. "If they were just recruited by him, then we wanted to make our own evaluation of whether we thought they were the right fit for what we were trying to do."

Walsh also added this interesting comment: "Beauty's in the eyes of the beholder in this thing, and what Rich thought was beautiful, maybe I do and maybe I don't. It's one of those things where different people see different things in different players."

Walsh inherits a Cal Poly team which went 8-3 last year. That includes a 30-28 loss to Montana and a 36-35 overtime defeat at Wisconsin. However, Walsh losses a lot of talent from that nationally ranked Football Championship Subdivision team, including quarterback Jonathan Dally, wide receiver Ramses Barden and wingbacks James Noble and Ryan Mole.

A look at Eastern Michigan recruiting

Eastern Michigan, Army's season-opening opponent in 2009, has announced a recruiting class of 22 players.

"I thought our entire staff did a good job in a short period of time to put together what I think will be a very productive group of players," said new Eastern Michigan coach Ron English. "I think that a big majority of these recruits will have an immediate impact on the success of our program." The Class of 2009 is heavy on the defensive side of the ball with 15 players signed, including five linebackers, five defensive linemen and five defensive secondary candidates. There are seven recruits on offense, including two quarterbacks, two tight ends, two wide receivers and one offensive lineman. English also took advantage of the junior college ranks, signing three players from the College of the Sequoias, and another from Palomar J.C.

English replaced Jeff Genyk as Eastern Michigan's coach. Genyk was fired with one game remaining in 2008. English, 40, was a safety at the University of California from 1987-90. He came to Eastern Michigan after serving as Michigan's defensive coordinator (2003-07). English served in the same capacity at Louisville.

Army plays at Eastern Michigan on Sept. 5.

In Army baseball news, the Black Knights have been picked to finish first in the Patriot League for the fourth time in five years.

Army picked up 48 points in the poll, receiving eight first-place votes (two shy of a unanimous selection). Navy is projected for second place with 37 points and two first-place votes, followed by Holy Cross (30 points, 1 first-place vote) in third place. Lafayette (1 first-place vote) and Bucknell stand tied for fourth place in the poll with 24 points, followed by Lehigh in sixth place with 17 points.

"It's always nice to the see respect the league coaches hold for the players in our program," explained Army head coach Joe Sottolano. "It's a great honor for the young men that have been in our program for a few years, but ultimately we understand that a preseason poll doesn't guarantee anything. We're not going to change what we're going to do each and every day and how we're going to go to work. Our goals remain the same and we look forward to competing for a championship."

Army is in the midst of the most successful stretch in program history. The Black Knights finished last year at 25-25, marking the first time in program history that Army has registered five consecutive 25-victory seasons. The Black Knights are 156-97-2 (.616) the past five years, piling up the highest five-year win total in school history. Army has qualified for the Patriot League Tournament four times in the last five years, winning a pair of conference championships and three regular season league titles.

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