Players Lost:No significant contributors.
Recruits Added: Terry Longbons and Xavier Smith. JC transfer Paul Nichols can play some FB, but will primarily be used as a TE/H-Back. They will entertain adding walk-ons at the spot to bolster the scout team.
2006 Plans: The Cats will lose Bell, Harris and Limon, but added two runners this year. They will look to add a HB and a FB in 2006.
2005 INCOMING PLAYER PROFILES:
RB, 5-11, 211
Centennial HS, Peoria, AZ
17th ranked running back in the nation
Bio:Longbons had a legitimate chance at breaking the Arizona career rushing mark, but an injury ended his season prematurely. He rushed for over 3,500 yards in his career and was going to make a serious run at Marcus Thomas' mark. Longbons committed to Arizona in August and then dealt with rumor after rumor that he was going to look elsewhere. He is the high school teammate of Wildcat signee Jordan Lowe.
2005 Outlook:Longbons has a great chance to see time right away. The Cats have just three scholarship running backs returning and he appears to be physically ready. He won't redshirt if he can see significant snaps, but he will have to battle Gilbert Harris and Chris Henry to back up Mike Bell.
Quote: "It really is special having him on the team…If people are going to sell out to stop the run, we're going to hurt them all year with the pass. And if that helps us win, Terry will be happy." --Centenial Head Coach Richard Taylor
RB, 6-0, 200
SunnysideHS, Tucson, AZ
13th ranked running back in the nation
Bio:Smtih had 159 rushes for 1,806 yards and 26 touchdowns. He first-team All-State pick by the coaches and was first-team All-Southern Arizona and all-city. He led Sunnyside to the 4-A State title as a junior and helped the Blue Devils to the state playoffs again this season. .
2005 Outlook:They don't need Smith to play right away, but if he proves ready he'll see the field. The Cats have three returning runners, plus Terry Longbons, but Smith is a speed back and only Mike Bell is similar. Smith can play defense, but won't get a try there any time soon.
Quote: "He moves well running the ball on the outside and inside. He has good vision and quickness." --Sunny Head Coach Richard Sanchez
Mike Canales says: Xavier Smith and Terry Longbons, they bring a lot. When I see Longbons, I see Eddie George, big, strong, strapping downhill running back. Xavier is a threat to get outside and can still work the middle of the field. They both have their strengths. Terry needs to be able to catch the football."