Coach Dantonio began the press conference talking about recruiting with integrity. Then he began talking about the recruits.
Ben Guidugli and Brandon Miller were the first subjects. Coach Dantonio talked about Ben being an excellent athlete and tough kid. Coach was proud that the Guiduglis entrusted another son to the Bearcat program. Coach felt Ben would be an H-back at UC, and they could do a lot of things with Ben. Coach D said Brandon Miller was a Super 30 player last year although he didn't play this year due to age.
Coach talked about Curtis Smith and Derrick Stewart. Said these two players headlined last year's class but sat out the year to get grades in order. Both are great athletes with excellent speed. Derrick's grandfather went to four Olympics as a sprinter. Coach also said Kevin McCullough was now on scholarship, and it shows that guys willing to work hard can earn their college scholarship. If a walk-on can make an impact on the game, he's going to get a scholarship at UC.
Toby Boeckman was next. He's an honor roll student and plays basketball averaging 20+ points a game. Toby will be a TE next year but will move into being an offensive lineman. Coach said he was sure Toby would grow into an O-lineman. His brother at OSU gained 25 pounds in one year so they foresee the same for Toby.
Chris Harrison was a big guy that can run. Guys like this are at a premium. Chris runs the court well in basketball and the staff felt he was a "must get" kid. Chris is another honor role kid and was an early target for the staff. He turned away Illinois.
Jacob Ramsey is a running back that has also played linebacker, but UC sees Ramsey as a running back. Coach talked about Minnesota trying to come in late and get Jacob. Coach described Jacob as an "outstanding" player with good ball skills. Coach talked recently to Coach Tressel about Jacob, and OSU thought very highly of him.
Marcus Barnett is another honor role kid playing for a #1 team. Outstanding player from same school as Thomas Claggett and Patrick Mimms. Could play a variety of positions, but they plan to use him as a WR.
Peter Carriere plays DB and is from Canada. Unusual story since Coach Dantonio got call from coach at USC about Peter. USC was interested last year. Peter is #3 prospect in Canada and #1 cornerback. Coach said if you watch Peter on film teams have to know where #21 is. He runs very well, has good size and will hit you. Lucky to find a guy like Peter. He should be an "impact player."
Aaron Webster from Detroit was a top prospect in Michigan and good basketball player. He's another honor role student with varied skills including the ability to return kicks and punts. They battled Big Ten schools to get Aaron, specifically Wisconsin. Thought the coaching change at Wisconsin may have assisted them in landing Aaron.
Jason Whitehead from Florida was described as a "very exciting player." This defensive back will be a corner but also has played safety. Coach felt Coach Hinton and Barnett did a great job of gaining Jason's trust. People were "coming out of the woodwork" to get Jason. Coach talked about times changing regarding this kind of recruiting. Coaches were actively trying to talk Jason into backing out of his commitment to UC. Coach emphasized these recruits are quality people.
Robby Armstrong was all-state in Pennsylvania and could be a running back or linebacker. Robby received numerous awards and is an outstanding student that will hit you. His estimated weight is 210 pounds. Coach talked about many of his best linebackers over the years being converted running backs. He wasn't saying Robby would be a linebacker, but he felt he could be a good one. He felt Robby will see some early action on special teams.
John Goebel has ties to this UC staff. John's older brother played for Coach Treadwell at Michigan State and Coach Dantonio was also there for one season. Nothing but high praise for John. John had 2nd fastest 40 yard dash time (4.51) of their 500 campers this summer. Coach feels John has an excellent chance to play even if it's only special teams. Coach ended by saying, "He's a football player."
Coach talked about Freddie Lenix and said he almost came to UC last year. Coach Treadwell was instrumental in getting Freddie to UC with his strong bond with his high school coach. Fred could play linebacker or tailback with his 4.4 speed. "Extremely tough competitor about 6 feet tall and 220 pounds. Extremely explosive, and I keep telling Coach Tressel and Coach Narduzzi that we have to look at anyone with 4.4 speed at tailback. He's a gifted athlele."
Mario Duenas is another honor role student in high school. Chosen first team all-state junior college in California despite 88 schools in the state. Oregon recruited him late. "Should be immediate impact player for us."
Ricardo Matthews was recruited by Coach Hinton and Coach Gill who emphasized academics and did a great job. Ricardo had tremendous visit at UC with players and academic personnel. Had visits at Maryland, Illinois, Georgia Tech and Cincinnati. Coach said with these D-line recruits the line was on its was to being very solid. Coach Barnett also played a role in getting Ricardo.
Ralston Reeves from Detroit runs well and very explosive. Looking for big things from him and looks to play early in his career at UC.
Ken Rodriquez, a juco from California, also good student and should be in the mix for playing time at O-line. Coaches Roushar and Staten were responsible for Ken's recruitment.
"Oren Wilson is an extremely talented player from New Jersey. Very explosive. Wilson, Matthews, Harrison and Reeves are all explosive and will do very well for us. It all starts up front. We're extremely happy to have Oren. All these guys tell me they're defensive ends."
"C.J. Cobb was our 3rd player from Jacksonville and a very good football player and student. You go to Florida and all the sharks aren't in the water. After this guy committed to us there were all kinds of people after him. C.J. is tough and comes off the ball with a flat back."
Questions and Answers:
Helped ourselves most at big skill positions-running back, linebacker. Also helped on defensive line. Felt Derrick Stewart and Marcus Barnett will help the receiver position.
Felt they improved team speed. Have to remember last year UC was very young, and team speed doesn't matter too much if guys are going the wrong way.
Felt two recruits will have "to hustle" to get eligible but very confident about all the others academically. Did not want to identify the two question marks but felt they still had a chance to gain eligibility.
Couldn't pass up the quality they got at defensive line so they signed four. Talked about his great defense at OSU and all four guys up front played in NFL.
Curtis Smith presently weighing 265 pounds but very explosive. Could play defensive end or as a big linebacker.
Did not recruit a bunch of jucos because Coach wanted to send a message that he's in this for the long haul.
Had three players make final decisions today and two chose other schools so they have a couple scholarships in case a good player academically qualifies late. These scholarships also could serve as incentive for non-scholarship players already on the roster.
In twenty years of coaching has not seen so many players bounce around from school to school. Coach doesn't like this trend by the coaching community. When I guy switches schools in the last week, it makes it tough since the school has probably stopped recruiting others at that position.