Recruiting 2002: Defensive Backs

The Wildcats had a pressing need for a corner back to start opposite of Michael Jolivette. They have brought in three cornerbacks to compete for the spot. In addition to the three corners, the Wildcats have also brought in a talented safety.

Jason Martin

HT: 5-9
WT: 170
40: 4.44
Rank: 43 (***)
Home: Pasadena, CA (Muir HS)

Martin is a speedster who can play either CB or WR. Wildcat coaches see him as a corner back much in the mold of Michael Jolivette. He has quick feet and a great leaping ability. This past season he also played RB and was a solid kick returner. Attended Arizona's summer camp and committed soon after.

2002 Outlook: Martin will get a chance to compete right away. He has a lot of tools and will get every opportunity to win the CB job opposite Jolivette. Wildcat coaches feel that he is talented enough to play WR at this level.

Luis Nunez

HT: 5-11
WT: 185
Rank: NR (*)
Home: Los Angeles, CA (Los Angeles Southwest College)

Nunez is an unheralded, but talented JC cornerback. He excels at bump and run, man-to-man defense which is a staple of Arizona's defense. He has already enrolled and will be eligible for spring ball.

2002 Outlook: Nunez will try to get the upper hand at start at corner across the field from Jolivette. He has experience and the benefit of spring ball which will give him an upperhand over the other recruits.

Lamon Means

HT: 6-2
WT: 195
40: 4.5
Rank: NR (*)
Home: Galena Park, TX (Galena Park HS)

Means is a tall safety who has been described as a "guided missile". He is a big hitter with great coverage skills and range. Means could play at corner, safety or in the nickel package on the next level, but Wildcat coaches see him as a free safety. Wildcat coaches love his game smarts and the way he studies the game.

2002 Outlook: Means will have a chance to back up Jarvie Worcester at free safety. He has the speed and hitting ability to make an impact at that spot. It appears as if Clay Hardt will be moving to strong safety, so there is a great opportunity for playing time at FS.

Gary Shephard

HT: 5-10
WT: 188
Rank: NR (*)
Home: Spring, TX (Westfield HS)

Shephard is a talented corner corner who is very aggressive and likes to hit. Last season he had two picks, 74 tackles and forced a staggering 12 fumbles. He is a sprinter on his HS track team. Was not a highly ranked recruit, but a number of Big-12 and Big East schools recruited him. High School teammate of Wildcat signee Beau Carr.

2002 Projection: Will get a chance to win a cornerback position, but is most likely a redshirt candidate. Wildcat coaches love his hitting ability and think he could thrive in the bump-and-run, man defense the Wildcats employ.


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