In fact, an incredible 12 commitments in total have been reported between Dec. 11 and Jan. 1, 2013.
Just how many more recruits will Coach Petrino bring in? Check out our exclusive breakdown below.
By The Numbers:
• We expect the program to bring in at least 25 prospects, otherwise known as a "full class". The NCAA limits football recruiting classes to 25 new scholarships per academic year, as long as the total on the roster does not surpass 85. Keep in mind—This means mid-year enrollee's do not count against the 25. The highest number of players WKU could have accepted this year is 33, after accounting for departing seniors and athletes that left the program pre/mid-season.
• There are currently 24 commitments to the Hilltoppers.
• 7 of these commitments---Devante Duclos, Dontravious Wilson, Kyle Jones, Lonnie Turner, Connor Popeck, Maurice Bennett, and Dalton Patterson---are mid-year enrollee's, and should be arriving at WKU to begin school in January.
• That means 17 commits will count towards the maximum 25 allowed, so there are 8 spots left that could (or could not) be filled to reach the limit of 25.
For now, here are the positions we've identified that are still in need.
Quarterback: With Kawaun Jakes graduating, WKU only returns James Mauro, Brandon Doughty, and walk-on Matt Kuivinen. The Hilltoppers will be adding former nationally ranked prospect DaMarcus Smith to the roster, but he's been away from football for two years now. WKU offered several 2013 quarterbacks who chose other schools, including Eddie Printz, Logan Woodside, and Nick Montana. Tyler Cogswell, a previous Arkansas commit, is currently the top target and has an official visit planned for the weekend of Jan. 25. Darryl Richardson is another top target still on the board, but it's unclear how seriously he's considering the Toppers.
Inside Linebacker: A position that Andrew Jackson has anchored for two seasons, it remains to be seen if he'll return for a senior campaign or head to the NFL Draft. Should Jackson stay, WKU still has a capable backup in DaQual Randall, but there is little depth behind him. The Toppers had offered T.J Simmons, but he committed to Indiana.
Defensiveback: The Toppers return several veterans in the defensive backfield, including Jonathan Dowling (unless he declares for the NFL Draft), Kiante Young, Arius Wright, Tyree Robinson, Cam Thomas, and Brett Harrington. But all of the above—minus Dowling and Thomas—will be seniors, so the Toppers will need to fill a lot of gaps after next season. Marcus Ward, Josh Shelton, Juwan Gardner, and Dalton Patterson (JUCO) have already committed, but the Toppers could still add 1 or 2 more.
Defensive line: WKU will lose all four of their starters from the defensive line entering 2013. Calvin Washington and Gavin Rocker are the favorites to take over at defensive end, but Washington will graduate sooner-than-later. Three-star junior college commitment Maurice Bennett could see some time early, and two-star Marcus Adams is a steal that could anchor the line for the next few years, but the Toppers still need a bit more depth. Commitments from Devante Lee and Ismael Aurismond ensure depth at defensive end, but the Toppers could still use one or two more commits at tackle.