Lane Kiffin is no longer the only coach in America who offers football scholarships to middle school players.
Zadock Dinkelmann, an eighth grade quarterbacking nephew of former Heisman Trophy winner Ty Detmer, is now on board with the Tigers for the … get this … class of 2018. As 247Sports pointed out this evening, the Tigers now have commitments for the class of 2015, 2016, 2017 and the nation’s first 2018 commitment. LSU made headlines in the fall when high school freshman Dylan Moses picked the Tigers. Only Mississippi State has another 2017 commitment (Anthony Hines).
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Obviously, Dinkelmann has the bloodlines with his uncle Ty, and at 14 years old he is already 6-foot-4, 190 pounds so the specs measure up. But he hasn’t played varsity football yet. He is from the San Antonio area. LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron verbally offered Dinkelmann, but a written offer won’t come for several years and of course he can’t sign a scholarship for more than three years.
“We all think it’s a little crazy but we’re excited for him,” Detmer told the newspaper the Baton Rouge Advocate. :”He bought all kinds of LSU gear and wore it around all week. He’s put together pretty good. Very athletic. Runs track. Does real well in everything he does. He’s kind of a natural athlete. Shows up well at some of these camps and combines. He places near the top. People see him throw and think he’s a high school kid. There’s a lot that can happen in four years – coaching changes and who knows what can happen. At this point, with the way the program is, obviously it’s one of the top programs. He’d love to go there.”
Dinkelmann is slated to attend high school at Somerset next year, and will be in a program coached by his grandfather Sonny Detmer and another of his uncles, Koy Detmer.
Kiffin, in 2009, offered the then eighth-grade Berry twins when he was coaching at Tennessee. They were the little brothers of Eric Berry, so it was a safe bet … and they signed earlier this month with the Vols. When Kiffin switched to USC, he offered eighth grade QB David Sills, a 2015 prospect. Sills is now a three-star prospect with many offers, but there’s no guarantee he ends up with the Trojans now.
You can also watch the highlight video on YouTube.