Finishing Strong

National Signing Day is less than one week away. It's a race to the finish line for Charlie Strong's staff and the UofL coach is working around the clock to finish off his first recruiting class with a few impact recruits.

Charlie Strong's staff has been in overdrive this week – the final week coaches can be on the road visiting with prospects before next week's National Signing Day.

Since taking over at Louisville in early December, Strong has completely re-made the Cardinals recruiting class. Currently rated the third-best recruiting class in the Big East by Scout.com, Strong has added 12 commitments to Steve Kragthorpe's previous commitments.

With only a couple scholarships left to hand out, Strong finds himself crunching numbers. That's because there are still several key targets that Louisville is still in the mix with, including four-star wide receiver Kadron Boone, three-star defensive lineman Todd Chandler, three-star quarterback Dominique Brown, three-star linebackers Preston Brown and Deon Rogers. That means Strong will have his work cut out trying to make the numbers work, particularly if most or all of the above mentioned group picks Louisville.


Dominique Brown, a three-star QB, will visit Louisville this weekend.
One spot that might open is currently occupied by Tyon Dixon, an undersized linebacker from Cincinnati. Dixon committed when Steve Kragthope was at UofL and visited the Cardinals a few weeks ago. However, he visited Memphis last week and will visit Marshall this weekend. Dixon told InsideTheVille.com that his visit to Memphis was good and he's strongly considering the Tigers and really likes assistant Mike Cassity at Marshall. Dixon plans to announce his decision at school at 7 am on National Signing Day.

In an attempt to make even more room in the class, Louisville has presented greyshirt offers to several of Steve Kragthorpe's commits. InsideTheVille.com has confirmed that RB Quan Weaver, OL Chase Petersen and OL Zachary Hundertmark have been asked to greyshirt next season, meaning they wouldn't enroll at Louisville until next January.

Todd Chandler, a three-star defensive tackle from Miami (FL) Northwestern, is a heavy Louisville lean. In fact, it would be a major upset if he isn't on UofL's official signing day list next week, even though he'll take a final official visit to South Carolina this week. Three of Chandler's teammates – RB Corvin Lamb, OL Torrian Wilson and WR Michaelee Harris are committed to Louisville. Expect Chandler to be the fourth Northwestern recruit for the Cards.

"I definitely had a great time [at Louisville] and the coaches made me feel so comfortable," Chandler told ESPN.com "They are headed in the right direction and they were able to tell how I could fit into their plans. I'm real close to [current teammates and Louisville commits] Corvin [Lamb] and Michaelee [Harris] too. I'd love to continue to play with them."

Charlie Strong wants three-star Florida linebacker Deon Rogers. Rogers committed to Georgia a while back but Strong has been working him hard to switch since moving to Louisville. Rogers has already made an official visit to Louisville and he'll have a critical in-home visit with Strong Thursday night.

Dominique Brown will be the most important official visitor for Louisville this weekend. The three-star quarterback from Cincinnati (OH) Winton Woods is the No. 1 quarterback target for the Cardinals. Louisville believes that Brown can come in next season and compete for the quarterback job. Brown has already visited Ohio State, who wants him to play wide receiver, and Cincinnti. Brown recenltly crossed Georgia Tech off his list in favor of a visit to Louisville this week. The Cardinals had a great visit with Brown last week and might be the choice when Brown announces his decision on signing day.


Charlie Strong visits three-star LB Deon Rogers Thursday night.
Louisville also wants to land a big-play wide receiver to their list.

News broke Wednesday night that Josh Bellamy, a junior college transfer from Florida, plans to sign with Louisville on signing day.

If Bellamy's on board, and it appears he is, Louisville might have to scramble at the end to find room for Kadron Boone.

The Cardinals are a legitimate threat for the four-star wide receiver from Trinity Catholic, Fla. Boone has already visited Louisville and will make a final visit to LSU this weekend. Charlie Strong had an in-home visit with Boone Tuesday night and the Cardinals have a strong relationship. LSU needs wide receivers in their class and Tiger assistant Billy Gonzalez had a relationship with Boone when he coached wide receivers at Florida. Boone is expected to announce next week.

B.J. Butler, a four-star Louisville commit, wasn't forgotten this week by Charlie Strong, who made an in-home visit with the former Georgia recruit. Butler might be Louisville's top signee and he's an important prospect for the Cardinals.

One that we'll be watching closely next week. Preston Brown, a three-star linebacker from Cincinnati, OH. Brown is committed to Cincinnati but Louisville is trying to flip him. They might get it done. He made an official visit to Louisville recently and Vance Bedford and Mike Sanford had an in-home visit last week. Brown is expected to announce his decision on signing day.

Miami defensive lineman Jamaine Brooks, and Miami safety Lavaughn Whigham appear backup options for the Cardinals. Both players made official visits to Louisville last week. Whigham will visit West Virginia this week.

Extras

Steve Funderburk will sign with Tulane. A teammate of Deon Rogers, Louisville simply could find room for the talented safety....Dylan Curry will play in the Kentucky-Tennessee Border Bowl....Three commits are ranked in the New Jersey Top 30: Kamal Hogan (13), Kai Dominguez (25)....Six UofL commits are ranked in Kentucky's Top 15: Quan Weaver (3), Stephan Robinson (8), Harris Bivin (9), Brandon Dunn (10), Tyrrell Willis (11), Dylan Curry (12)...Three commits are ranked in Florida's Top 100: Michaelee Harris (3), B.J. Butler (31), Torrian Wilson (84). One commit is ranked in the Arkansas Top 20: Chase Petersen (10).....There are reports that Louisville has offered Tampa, Florida defensive back Eric Dungy, the son of former NFL Super Bowl coach Tony Dungy of the Colts.

Class Breakdown

QB (3) – Luke Woodley, Marcus Smith, Mike Rocco

RB (3) – Corvin Lamb, Kamal Hogan, Quan Weaver (greyshirt offer)

WR (5) – Anthony McClung, Kai Dominguez, Stephan Robinson, Jarrett Davis, Michaelee Harris

TE (1) – Dylan Curry

OL (6) – Torrian Wilson, Jake Smith, Chris Acosta, Zachary Hundertmark (greyshirt offer), Chase Petersen (greyshirt offer), Harris Bivin

DL (4) – Lacy Coleman, B.J. Butler, Brandon Dunn, Randy Salmon

LB (1) – Tyon Dixon (soft verbal)

DB (2) – Jordan Paschall, Senorise Perry


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