For as long as I have followed the recruitment of 4 star safety Frank Buncom IV, he seemed destined to end up at Stanford. He went head and made the decision that most thought was inevitable today by choosing the Cardinal.
Buncom has played numerous positions for his high school, but what is his best one and what kind of player is Stanford getting in Buncom?
Frank Buncom IV - 4 star safety
I know that some people consider Buncom a corner, but I don't think that's his best position at the next level. I don't feel he has good enough long speed to run with elite receivers and is a better fit at safety. He has good size for the position and great length as well. He shows fluid hips and transitions smoothly. He's a very good athlete, but I don't feel he's an elite one.
Buncom played mostly as a linebacker during his senior season as opposed to more as a deeper safety and cornerback as a junior. What was great about seeing him as a linebacker was that it was obvious he could be the kind of player who could drop down into the box and be that kind of player for Stanford. He did a much better job than most safety prospects would do at working his way through the trash to track down the football.
He's a strong tackler that consistently wraps up and hits through ball carriers. He also showed terrific timing as a blitzer as well, both in the interior of the line and off the edge.
His cover skills were more evident as a junior where you can see him do a nice job of getting his hands on receivers and disrupting routes. Just like he showed at receiver on offense, he displayed good ball skills. His length helps him break up passes, which is crucial because he could work on being a bit quicker out of his breaks. He can do that by also cleaning up his footwork a bit, but he's ahead of a lot of players in that area and can refine rather than have to build from scratch.
I think he's a safety that could play strong or free and should be capable of matching up with tight ends and running backs in coverage. He could also fit in a big nickel role for Stanford if they choose to use him in that capacity. He's a very good pickup that should develop into a solid player for multiple seasons at Stanford.