Biographical Details: 6’2″ 340lbs – Niagara Wheatfield [Niagara Falls, NY], Erie Comm. College [2010 & 2011] and Indiana University of Pennsylvania [NCAA Div II]. Knotts appeared in four games for IUP in Sept of 2012 leading me to believe that he will be eligible to play in the OUA after Sept 29 2013. I expect he will have two more full seasons of eligibility after that.
Position: DT – Knotts has played multiple positions on the DL and played OL his first year at ECC but I expect that he will be an interior defensive lineman. He looks like he can play either 1-tech or 3-tech DT. I think he is more likely a 1-tech in Kevin MacNeill’s defense.
Honours & Stats: Knotts spent time on both the offensive and defensive lines with the Kats. In 2011, he switched to defensive line and started all 10 games on his way to being named an All-Northeast Football Conference third-team selection. Knotts recorded 24 total tackles (8 solo/16 assists) and made five tackles for loss of 23 yards. He sacked two quarterbacks. Knotts made a season-high seven stops against nationally ranked Dean College (10/15). His sacks came against the conference champion Bulldogs and in the Region III Championship game (11/12). In 2010, Knotts started seven games on offensive line. – Read the full ECC announcement here.
My Take: Here is what I originally wrote … At 340lbs Knotts will give the Gryphons a bigger anchor in the middle than they have had in many years. I think you would have to go all the way back to two-time All Canadian Jeremy Oxley [1999 & 2000] to find a bigger man in the middle. What I like about Knotts is how well he moves for a man that size.
Since then I have learned that a slimmed down Knotts will report to camp in the 310lb range. That change probably better prepares him for the Canadian game and the wider field. I expect he will be a faster and more agile version of what can be seen in his highlights here.
I could be mistaken but I seem to recall something on Facebook that suggested Knotts may have originally been planning to transfer to York U. If that was so, it may be that his friendship with former ECC teammate, and Gryphon recruit, Ian Marouf, played a role in his ending up at Guelph. I wouldn’t be surprised if it was Marouf who alerted UofG coaches to his availability and talent.