Riverdale’s Rashad Canty flipped his commitment from Appalachian State to Wake Forest on Sunday after taking an official visit to the ACC school. (Staff Photo: Derrick Mahone)
RIVERDALE — The speculation had been building since Rashad Canty had an all-state type of season.
Offers started coming in from more established Football Bowl Subdivision schools, so the former Riverdale wide receiver’s commitment to Appalachian State didn’t look as solid. Canty had about 20 offers from schools, including some in the ACC, SEC and Big Ten Conference.
On Sunday, he reopened his recruitment by decommitting to Appalachian State after a weekend visit to Wake Forest.
This will be a big week for Canty as he awaits offers from SEC schools Missouri and Vanderbilt.
“I have some better options and opportunities,” Canty said about his Appalachian State decommitment on Monday morning.
Coaches from Missouri and Vandy were expected to be at the school on Tuesday to meet with Canty.
With these new options come more decisions.
Canty said Wake Forest wants him to shut down his recruiting if he commits to them. So far, the Demon Deacons have 14 high school players committed to sign on National Signing Day on Feb. 5.
“They told me if I commit to them I have a spot secured,” Canty said. “They say if I'm faithful to them, they will be faithful to me.”
He had been committed to Appalachian State since June 29 of last year. Appalachian State, a former powerhouse on the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision, is making the transition to college football’s highest level.
The school will join the Sun Belt Conference this upcoming football season.
Wake Forest hired Dave Clawson from Bowling Green in late December after longtime coach Jim Grobe resigned following the Demon Deacons’ fifth straight losing season.
Clawson will likely bring his high-powered passing attack offense to the team. Last season, Wake Forest had one of the country’s top wide receivers in record-setting Michael Campanaro. Before going down with a season-ending collarbone injury at Syracuse, he set a school record with 229 career interceptions to go with 2,506 yards.
In an interview with ESPN.com following his appointment as coach, Clawson said that Wake Forest will employ a balanced offensive attack during his tenure.
“We know what we want to do on offense,” Clawson told ESPN.com. “We want to be balanced. We want to be able to run the football. We want to be a physical football team. That’s the system we’ve run at Bowling Green and to some degree, the things I’ve done for the 15 years before that. When you go out and you’re recruiting, you’re looking at guys to fit the system.”
Within a week of getting the job, Clawson’s staff made the offer to Canty, and has made him their top wide receiver target.
He said before he visits Vandy or Missouri he would like to have an offer from the schools.
“They are telling me if I come for a visit, they will offer,” Canty said. “I don’t want to mess anything up with Wake Forest in case the other schools don’t come through.”
Missouri, in its second season in the SEC, lost to national champion runner-up Auburn in the SEC Championship game at the Georgia Dome in early December. Vandy recently named Derek Mason as its new coach after James Franklin left for Penn State.
Mason was previously the associate head coach at Stanford.
“I have some good options, and some big decisions to make,” Canty said. “I hope to have everything cleared up within the week.”
Other Riverdale commitments include defensive back Isa Muhammed, who has pledged to Kennesaw State and defensive end Chinedu Okonya, who has committed to Furman.
The Raiders finished 4-6 overall and third in the subregion before losing to Eagle’s Landing in the Region 4-AAAA play-in game to miss the postseason.