Waiting game

The wait is almost over, but the final 24 hours before recruits begin signing national letters of intent could be the most difficult for Colorado football fans. The Buffs are expecting 20-22 letters to roll off the fax machine at some point Wednesday, but who fills the final few spots in the 2009 class is still a mystery, maybe even to the coaches. Get inside for more.

Surprises are not uncommon on signing day for any team coaches by Dan Hawkins, who likes to keep things close to the vest in recruiting. So an unexpected name or two appearing on the final list of signees Wednesday would not be out of the question.

We do know at least a handful of prospects all have the Buffs listed among their final choices heading into the big day, and most of them are wide receivers, making the hunt to add talent at the biggest need position in the program in this cycle will come down to the wire.

Colorado has 17 known commitments and could receive as many as five or six more pledges on decision day. Here are some of the faces who would top off the class nicely on Wednesday.

Emory Blake could get a chance to play in front of family and friends immediately next year when the Buffs travel to Austin, Texas, for an October meeting with the Texas Longhorns.

Blake is a talented playmaker at receiver and in the return game at Austin High School. The 6-2, 190-pound three-star athlete first committed to Texas Tech in the fall, but opened up his options last month and will pick between the Red Raiders, Colorado and Auburn.

Terdema Ussery, the highest rated receiver left on the board who has been rumored to be a CU lock for months will finally make the call. He is rated the 41st best receiver in the 2009 class and a three-star prospect.

Ussery is 6-4 and 195 pounds with plenty of speed. He played his high school ball at St. Mark's School of Texas in the Dallas area and is set to choose between CU and Stanford. Not bad options when it comes to higher education and the college football experience.

Andre Simmons is the kind of talent who could come in and make an immediate impact. He is 6-3, 195 pounds and will be a junior next season and whatever school he chooses after spending the past two seasons at Independence Community College in Kansas.

Simmons was committed to CU but has been quoted in recent days following his weekend visit to Kansas State saying he will likely sign with the Wildcats, whose much less stringent admissions standards would be easier for him to qualify. Simmons admits he has work to do in the classroom to make sure he gets into school in Boulder if he chooses to become a Buff.

James Johnson is something of an enigma with Buffs fans. The wide receiver from Escondido, Calif., visited CU in the fall, but seemed to turn his attention elsewhere, giving Buffs fans the impression he was headed elsewhere. He has been quoted recently saying the Buffs remain in his list of finalists and he has promised to surprise people with his pick on signing day.

. "I've got to make it a surprise," he recently told Scout.com. "I want the world to be like ‘Oh damn, how'd he end up there?'"

Johnson's final four includes Washington, Oregon, Cal and the Buffs.

Chris Freeman is a name plenty of CU followers would love to see on among this year's crop of future players. The mammoth offensive lineman from the Dayton, Ohio, area is friends with current Buffs Doug Rippy and Rodney Stewart.

Some questions linger about his health, but there is no doubt the young man can plow the road when he's in pads and between the lines.

Freeman said last month he would choose between CU, Wisconsin, Missouri and Tennessee.

Byron Moore is the highest rated player remaining who is thought to be seriously considering CU. He was in the final group of official visitors to Boulder in the 2009 cycle last weekend. The 6-1, 190-pound safety from Narbonne High School in Harbor City, Calif., will choose between Colorado, Notre Dame and Cal.

Josh Moten, a 6-1, 180-pound quarterback/defensive back prospect from Narbonne High School in Harbor City, Calif., who will choose between Colorado and Washington.


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