Michigan State made a big statement for the class of 2016 when they offered St. Clair Shores South Lake running back Martell Pettaway. The 5-foot-10, 199-pound prospect will likely be one of the top prospects in the Midwest for next year and the Spartans see him as a blue-chip recruit.
Pettaway had a strong sophomore season in which he rushed for 1,383 yards and 14 touchdowns. He has followed that up with several strong camp performances. Earlier this year, he attended the Best of the Midwest camp.
“The sophomore shows a ton of potential,” Rivals analyst Josh Helmholdt said on Pettaway’s camp performance. “He has a great running back build, but what caught our eye was his agility and change of direction in the position drills where he was not far behind Damien Harris’ (No. 1 RB in 2015) effort.”
The Spartans have been keeping a close eye on Harris over the past year and earlier this week they decided to extend him a scholarship.
“I went up for a spring practice earlier this spring, but I had to leave earlier,” Harris said. “I went back up on Wednesday and was able to sit down with Coach (Mark) Dantonio and he offered me a scholarship right there. It feels really good to get that first scholarship offer, it is a blessing. It makes me want to work even harder.”
Pettaway has been to MSU and is becoming more familiar with what the school and the program has to offer. He was in East Lansing last fall when the Spartans took on the Wolverines and is in frequent contact with MSU wide receivers coach Terry Samuel and director of college advancement & performance Curtis Blackwell.
“Michigan State is a very nice program,” Pettaway said. “I love the coaching staff there. I also like how all the facilities are right there together bunched up in one place. I love the atmosphere and can’t wait to get back up there.”
The offer by the Spartans did not necessarily come as a surprise and Pettaway said he believes that schools such as Michigan and Tennessee are schools that could offer at some point in the future. Pettaway is in no hurry to make his choice though he does have a good idea of what he is looking for in a college destination.
“I am going to be looking for a place where I can get a good degree if football does not pan out,” he said. “I want to make sure I have a degree that helps me be successful in life no matter what I decide to do.”