2014: Torro Taggart

‘The Closer’: Woodie Named AAC Recruiter of the Year

‘The Closer’: Woodie Named AAC Recruiter of the Year | SoFloBulls Blog

They call him the closer.

Ray Woodie has proven when it comes to recruiting he knows how to finish what he started.

The USF assistant football coach was named American Athletic Conference recruiter of the year by Rivals.com. He was the Sun Belt Conference recruiter of the year in 2012.

Woodie primarily works the Tampa Bay area south through Manatee and Sarasota counties. Some would say he has a hometown advantage because he played for Palmetto and was its head coach after starting off his career as the Bayshore head coach.

All of that would be meaningless if Woodie wasn’t being Woodie.

He says there is no magic. Honesty is the best policy in recruiting. If you don’t believe in what you are selling, get out of the business.

Woodie is an energetic, high-intensity person who loves going into homes and sitting down for that all-important family dinner.

He is transparent and doesn’t criticize other programs.

“You can’t fool anybody these days. If you tell a kid and his parent something, it better be true because with social media they are going to find out,” Woodie says. “We try to sell them on our program. We don’t badmouth other programs. And we don’t worry about other programs. Let them worry about us.”

USF has the consensus best recruiting class in the AAC, and one major publication had the Bulls with the 39th-best class in the country. Some recruiting evaluation sites say this is the best class in USF’s 17-year history.

“The bottom line is he is a closer. He is a type of guy who works hard and is very well-respected among the coaches in the 239 and 941 area code,” said Rivals.com publisher Steve Berry. “He is the guy USF sent out to get the signature on the line. He has shown he has the ability to make things happen.”

Woodie signed 12 players, including some he stole from the so-called
major powers and some who flipped at the last minute and came to the Bulls.

Two of his top recruits were ESPN four-star guys Immokalee linebacker Jimmy Bayes — who was offered by Michigan, Missouri, Georgia Tech and Miami — and receiver Ryeshene Bronson from Fort Myers Dunbar, who was offered by Florida, Auburn, FSU and Miami.

Some of his other 4-star recruits were Tampa Jesuit defensive end Vincent Jackson (ESPN) and Immokalee running back D’Ernest Johnson (Rivals).
He also signed Booker running back Marlon Mack (ESPN four stars), who originally committed to UCLA and was offered by Louisville, Nebraska and Purdue.

For the most part, the recruits want to know how fast they can get playing time, and parents want to know about their son getting a degree, Woodie says. Continue Reading by Clicking Here

by Alan Dell | Bradenton Herald | Twitter: @AdellSports

SoFloBulls Blog by Matthew Manuri

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