Recruiting Roundup 10-28

With the 2006 season two thirds of the way done and the always fun ‘second season' right around the corner we thought it might be a good idea to take a look at where the Wildcats stand on the recruiting front. With six public commitments on the board we take a look at some of the names left on the board.

We will go position by position and breakdown some of the prospects that the Cats are in on and give OUR OPINION on the mutual interest level between the UA and the prospect. We will give each recruit a number from 1-10 and it is solely our opinion of the likelihood of that prospect ending up at Arizona.

Quarterback

The Cats needed to bring in one high school signal caller and it was mission accomplished this summer when Hawaii gunslinger Bryson Beirne committed to the Cats.

Running Back

Entering the 2006 season it looked as if the Cats would only need to bring in one back. Things changed when incoming back Derke Robinson left the program after only being a partial qualifier. The Cat coaches were no doubt happy when SoCal standout back Nicholas Grigsby committed but that leaves one opening for the Cats to fill. The top running backs on the board for the Cats number just two and they are Pflugerville (Tex.) Hendrickson stud Joseph Reese (9) and Richmond (Calif.) Salesian standout Jahvid Best (5).

Wide Receivers

With the impending loss of senior wide out Syndric Steptoe and with two juniors on the roster in B.J. Dennard and Anthony Johnson this is the year for the Cats to bring in another big load of wide outs. The Cats have already received commitments from two wide receivers in local standout Devin Veal and Rancho Cucamonga, California receiver David Roberts. It is likely that the Cats will take at least one and possibly two more receivers and some of the likely candidates are Damien Davis (8), Alvin Logan (5) and Hubert Anyiam (4).

Tight End

With the graduation of senior Brad Wood it is imperative for the Cats to bring in the best tight end available in this year's class. Thankfully for the Cats they are in on two of the best in the country in Texas standout Billy Chavis (8) and Pittsburgh area stud, five star Rob Gronkowski (10).

Offensive Line

The Cats are extremely young on the line but it is a must for every program to bring in the best possibly linemen every year. The Cats are in on some good ones but they have their work cut out for them to land some of the ones they truly want. The target list for linemen is impressive and it includes Kristofer O'Dowd (7), Jarvis Jones (7), Anthony Morgan (4), Chris Perry (3), Adam Tello (7), Devan Cunningham (7), Sam DeMartinis (5) and Jeremiah Hatch (5).

Defensive End

The Cats are stocked pretty well at the end spot but they are still in need of a couple of pure ends in the 2007 class. Some of the candidates are Everson Griffen (3), Russell Carter (7), Kenny Rowe (5), Apaiata Tuihalamaka (6), LeVar Brown (7), William Yancy (4) and Christian Tupou (7) and Sam-Earl Fehoko (6).

Defensive Tackle

The Cats are the deepest they have been in years at the tackle position but it is still likely that the Cats bring in two more in the 2007 class. The Cats already have one in the boat with Hans Phillip so they will look to add one more. Some of the top young prospects for the inside on the defensive line are Kaniela Tuipulotu (6), Cameron Jordan (6), Adrian Campbell (3), Michael Matamua (6), Will Tukuafu (5) and Jerrod Black (3).

Linebackers

The Wildcat coaching staff scored a bit of an early coup when they secured the commitment of four-star MIKE backer Terrance Pritchett. Even with Pritchett on board it is likely that the Cats will try and bring in one more linebacker as they will lose two backups off the roster after this season. A few of the better prospects are Jermaine Love (6), Brandon Herron (3) and Malcolm Smith (3).

Defensive Backs

The Cats only lose senior strong safety Michael Johnson after the season so a replacement at the safety spot is needed. It is also a decent possibility that they could lose All-American cornerback Antoine Cason early to the NFL and in case that does happen the coaches need to recruit with that in mind. A few of the commitments already on board could wind up playing in the secondary but it is likely that the Cats still bring in three additional defensive backs. Some of the possibilities are Michael Williams (4), James Thomas (6), Lance Mitchell (6), Donovan Warren (5), Greg McCoy (5), Randez James (6) and Jared Flannel (8).

Place Kicker

Senior Nick Folk graduates after a solid career in Tucson and the Cats need to fin his replacement. Jason Bondzio is on the roster but the Cats still need to use another scholarship on a kicker in this class. Even though Folk will be gone, another Folk may come in to replace him. Nick's little brother, Erik Folk (9), is high on the Cats list of possibles. Another familiar name appears on the target list as Alex Zendejas (9) is also high on the list. In the end it may come down to Arizona Special Teams Coordinator Joe Robinson literally flipping a coin as both of the young kickers are very solid. There are a couple of other possibilities but the two familiar names seem to be the highest and best of the bunch.

With the season progressing and recruiting going slow, for the time being, for the Cats, it is shaping up to be a very busy holiday season for the staff. In Mike Stoops' first two full recruiting seasons he and his staff spent much of December and January keeping kids committed and this year it seems that they will need to do more of that but also a lot more pitching and selling.


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