EAST LANSING, Mich (WLNS) – Even though Michigan State’s football program had most of its 2021 class in place prior to Wednesday’s traditional National Signing Day, Mel Tucker was still waiting for a few key players to make their pledge to the ‘Green and White.’
So, when four-star wide receiver Keon Coleman (Opelousas (Louisiana) Catholic School) made it official Tucker couldn’t help but celebrate the Louisiana kid in style by slipping on the Mardi Gras beads.
“I’m very excited to announce the signing of wide receiver Keon Coleman to our recruiting class,” Tucker said on a Zoom call midday. “Keon is a very special player. He’s tall. He’s long. He has a very good build for a receiver. Very smooth and athletic.”
Athletic is certainly the word of choice when it comes to describing the 6-foot-4, 188 pound receiver because not only is he ranked as the No. 62 receiver in the nation, but he had several Power Five offers to play basketball. Oh, and he runs track.
“He has the athletic ability to out jump defenders for the ball,” added Tucker.
Coleman committed to Kansas in July, but de-committed in October to pursue other offers and Tucker made sure to never stop recruiting him throughout the process. He was a ‘high-priority target’ for Tucker.
“We had never gotten off of Keon, even when he committed to Kansas,” Tucker said. “We wished him well, but asked him if it was OK for us to continue to recruit him. He said that it was and we stayed in constant communication. It was a relentless effort to continue to put our best foot forward and continue to recruit him. At the end of the day, he felt like this was the best place for him.”
Tom Izzo also played a ‘very instrumental’ role in getting Coleman to sign at MSU, because the intention is for him to also play basketball in East Lansing which was very important to the dual sport star.
“He’s a legitimate basketball player,” said Tucker. “I mean he can really light it up out there and he’s a two-sport athlete. I mean there’s not a whole bunch of those guys out there that can do it at the Power Five level, but he’s certainly a player that can do that.”
Coleman becomes the 19th member of MSU’s class, after 18 players signed in December, but Tucker did miss out on top-tier recruit on Wednesday.
Four-star defensive tackle Rayshaun Benny, from Oak Park High School near Detroit, flipped his commitment from MSU to rival Michigan.
When asked about Benny’s decision to sign with Jim Harbaugh instead of him Tucker simply replied, “I’m never really surprised in recruiting.”