Missouri's 2002 Recruiting Class

An upbeat Gary Pinkel announced his 2002 football recruiting class to the media on Wednesday. Many observers believe this class is one of the best by Missouri over the past couple of decades. It also didn't hurt Pinkel's outlook to have an eleventh hour commitment by Mexico blue chipper Dedrick Harrington.

Missouri Football Announces 2002 Recruiting Class

COLUMBIA, Mo.- University of Missouri Head Football Coach GARY PINKEL announced the signings of 22 football players on Wednesday's "National Letter-of-Intent Day" for college football. Pinkel and is coaching staff, in their second season at Missouri, has put together a talented recruiting class for the second straight season.

Of the 22 signees, seven are from the state of Missouri. According to several national rankings, Mizzou did an excellent job of signing the most talented players out of its' home state. One recruiting expert says that Missouri signed five of the top six recruits in the state. MoKan.com says that Mizzou landed six of the top 10 players in the state of Missouri. The Tigers also had success in the states of Texas, garnering six signatures, California where they signed four, as well as two outstanding recruits from the states of Florida and Oklahoma. Missouri also signed a player Nevada.Sixteen of Missouri's signees will enter school as true freshmen in the fall of 2002. The other six players are junior college transfers, two of whom (Todd Gohsler, Atiyyah Ellison) are enrolled in school this semester and will practice with the Tigers this spring.

In comparison to other schools, Rivals.com, considered to be one of the most respected recruiting services, ranks Missouri's class 28th in the country. Missouri's class ranks ahead of several bowl teams from a year ago, including three BCS teams, Maryland, Nebraska and Illinois. Missouri's recruiting class also ranks ahead of 2001 bowl teams Alabama, Washington State, Iowa State, Michigan State, Texas Tech, Pittsburgh, North Carolina, Boston College, Purdue, Virginia Tech, Syracuse, Brigham Young, Iowa and Stanford. The Tigers have consistently been ranked between 40th and 50th in the country the past several years. Rivals.com ranks fifteen of Missouri's signees among the top 100 in the country at their respective positions. Ten of those players rank among the top 50 and two (Mario Whitney and Dedrick Harrington) rank among the top 10.



Hgt, Wgt.

Hometown (Last School)

Fabian Bean


6-4, 255

Fontana, Calif. (Salisbury Prep)

Howard Brissette


6-6, 310

Las Vegas, Nev. (Chaffey College)

Joel Clinger


6-7, 280

Warrenton, Mo. (Warren County R-III)

Brandon Coleman


6-4, 205

Miami, Fla. (North Miami)

Mike Cook


6-3, 310

Friendswood, Texas (Clear Brook)

Atiyyah Ellison


6-4, 290

St. Louis, Mo. (Coffeyville C.C.)

Todd Gohsler


6-1, 195

San Diego, Calif. (Mesa College)

Marcus Guerrero-Bacon


6-3, 185

Houston, Texas (Cypress Springs)

Dedrick Harrington


6-4, 220

Mexico, Mo. (Mexico)

Josh Hibbets


6-2, 185

Enid, Okla. (Enid)

DeQuincy Howard


6-4, 220

Tyler, Texas (John Tyler)

Emmett Morris, Jr.


6-0, 215

St. Louis, Mo. (Parkway South)

David Overstreet


6-1, 190

Dallas, Texas (W.W. Samuell)

Alex Pettersen


6-4, 180

Carrollton, Texas (Newman Smith)

Steven Sanchez


6-4, 310

Visalia, Calif. (College of Sequoias)

Brian Smith


6-4, 220

Denton, Texas (Denton Ryan)

Corey Taylor


6-1, 220

St. Louis, Mo. (University City)

Philip Tizzio


6-6, 285

Moore, Okla. (Moore)

Mau Uiagalelei


6-3, 240

Pomona, Calif. (Mount San Antonio J.C.)

Zaccheus Ville


6-2, 270

Miami, Fla. (West Hills Junior College)

Mario Whitney


6-0, 185

Jackson, Mo. (Jackson)

Zach Zwilling


6-6, 250

St. Peters, Mo. (Ft. Zumwalt South)

TE/DL, 6-4, 255, Fontana, Calif. (Salibury Prep)
Big, athletic defensive line prospect out of Salisbury Prep School in Connecticut ... a four-year standout in both football and basketball ... led his team with nine quarterback sacks last season while scoring two touchdowns on the offensive side of the ball ... as a junior, led his team to a varsity championship ... has an older brother, Keith, who plays basketball at Texas A&M University ... also played lacrosse at Salisbury ... high school coach - Sean Brennan ... intends to major in communications ... son of Fabian Bean Sr. ... born Jan. 20, 1983.

OL, 6-6, 310, Las Vegas, Nev. (Chaffey College)
Highly touted offensive lineman out of Las Vegas, Nevada ... rated among the top 50 junior college offensive linemen in the nation by Rivals.com ... played at Chaffey College the last two seasons where he was a two-time all-conference selection and a JUCO All-American last year ... helped lead his team to two conference titles and two Southern California Bowl appearances ... Chaffey College won the Southern Cal Bowl last season and finished with a 10-1 record ... two-time team captain at Chaffey College ... high school coach - Kenny Truillo ... intends to major in education ... son of Cathy Brissette ... born Feb. 2, 1980.

OL/DL, 6-7, 280, Warrenton, Mo. (Warren County R-III)
Big lineman who garnered all-state honors as an offensive tackle ... rated the number one offensive lineman and the 10th top prospect in the state of Missouri by MoKan.com ... ranked as the 54th top offensive lineman in the country by Rivals.com ... a three-year varsity letterman at Warren Country R-III High School ... two-time first team all-conference selection at offensive tackle ... two-time first team pick as a defensive end ... earned second team all-conference as a sophomore on the offensive side of the ball ... helped lead his team to three straight conference championships ... earned St. Louis all-metro as a senior and was a two-time all-east Coaches Association selection at offensive tackle ... on defense, racked up 50 tackles, 11 quarterback sacks, an interception and a fumble recovery ... a three-sport athlete who also earned three letters in track & field and basketball ... state qualifier in the shot put in 2000 and 2001 ... helped lead his team to a district title in basketball in 2000 and a conference championship in 2001 ... high school coach - Steve McDowell ... a member of the National Honor Society and FFA ... son of John and Annette Clinger ... father is a junior high at-risk coordinator, mother is a junior high school teacher ... born July 12, 1983.

QB/ATH., 6-4, 205, Miami, Fla. (North Miami)
Exciting athlete with great size and speed ... ranks among the top 40 "athletes" by Rivals.com ... a two-time all-county quarterback at Miami North high school ... completed 135-of-235 passes for 1,461 yards and 10 touchdowns last season ... also rushed for 735 yards on 65 attempts, scoring five touchdowns ... as a junior, threw for 865 yards while rushing for 298 yards and two touchdowns ... threw for 1,617 yards as a sophomore, completing 145-of-220 passes ... threw 15 touchdowns ... also an outstanding volleyball player, earning all-county honors three times ... high school coach - Gil Lora ... intends to major in business ... son of Walter and Kim Coleman ... father is a mechanic, mother is a school teacher ... born Dec. 9, 1983.

OL/DL, 6-3, 310, Friendswood, Texas (Clear Brook)
Talented lineman out of the state of Texas ... brings tremendous size and strength to the Missouri program ... rated among the top 85 offensive line prospects in the country by Rivals.com ... first team all-state selection by the Football Coaches and Writers Association ... voted two-time Clear Brook High School "Offensive Lineman of the Year" ... team captain and offensive most valuable player as a senior, finishing with 65 pancake blocks ... three-time all-district selection ... totaled 31 pancake blocks as a senior ... also a four-year letterwinner in track & field ... district champion in the shot put and school record holder in both the shot and discus ... threw the shot 55-5 feet and the discus 161-3 feet ... high school coach - James Smith ... intends to major in education ... son of Jesse and Shawn Cook ... father is a supervisor, mother is a sales representative ... born Jan. 25, 1983.

6-4, 290, St. Louis, Mo. (Coffeyville Community College)
Athletic lineman out of St. Louis who originally signed with Missouri out of Parkway South High School ... spent the last two years at Coffeyville Community College in Kansas where he starred on the defensive line ... made 57 tackles, tying for fifth on the team, and racked up five quarterback sacks in 10 games last season ... ranked among the top defensive linemen in the midwest by Mokan.com out of high school ... had 47 tackles and three quarterbacks sacks his senior season at Parkway South and earned all-state and all-metro honors ... son of Regina Leatherberry ... born Sept. 29, 1981.

6-1, 195, San Diego, Calif. (Mesa College)
Talented kicker/punter out of Mesa College in California ... Two-time honorable mention JUCO All-American kicker ... two-time Mesa College special teams MVP ... two-time all-Foothill Conference ... made 34-of-35 PATs and connected on 9-of-15 field goal attempts last season ... averaged 39.5 yards per punt and placed three punts on the one-yard line ... was the leading punter in the state of California, averaging 42.6 yards per punt as a freshman ... scored 61 points as a senior at Junipero Serra High School, ranking him fifth in San Diego County ... helped lead his high school team to a 20-4 record during his varsity career ... a three year letterman in basketball and an outstanding soccer player ... played premier level club soccer and participated in five California State Cup championship matches ... high school coach - Jeff Olivero ... intends to major in marketing ... son of Bob and Janet Gohsler ... born April 23, 1981.

WR/DB, 6-3, 185, Houston, Texas (Cypress Springs)
One of the best defensive back prospects out of Texas and ranks among the top 60 projected safeties by Rivals.com ... has excellent height and speed ... honorable mention all-state selection and first team all-district ... collected 112 tackles last year and had five interceptions ... selected team captain as a senior ... also lettered in baseball for three years ... member of his high school's sports club and also umpires Little League baseball ... high school coach - Robert Blackshear ... intends to major in psychology ... son of Donald and Mary Lou Guerrero-Bacon ... father is a director of radiology ... born Feb. 11, 1984.

WR/DB, 6-4, 220, Mexico, Mo. (Mexico)
Local product who is rated among the top prospects in the country ... phenomenal athlete who was a standout wide receiver and safety at Mexico High School ... all-state, all-conference and U.S. Army All-American this past season on both offense and defense ... ranked among the top 10 "athletes" in the country by Rivals.com and the No. 1 "athlete" in the MoKan. Region by MoKan.com ... ranked among the top 50 prospects in the nation by ESPN recruiting analyst Tom Lemming ... recorded over 75 receptions for close to 1,500 yards in his three-year career ... recorded over 180 career tackles, five interceptions and five forced fumbles ... was also Mexico's punter, averaging over 36 yards per punt in his career and was an outstanding kick-returner ... was selected to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio ... a four-year star on the Mexico basketball team ... all-state, all-district and all-conference on the hardwood ... also an all-state, all-district and all-conference performer on the track ... has been clocked at 4.55 in the 40-yard dash ... involved in Teens Needing Teens, Multi-Agricultural Club and Honors Choir ... high school coach - Todd Berck ... intends to major in medicine ... son of Randall and Denise Harrington ... born Sept. 25, 1983.

QB/ATH., 6-2, 185, Enid, Okla. (Enid)
Fantastic athlete who possesses blazing speed ... has been clocked 4.3 in the 40-yard dash ... rated among the top 30 "dual purpose" quarterbacks by Rivals.com ... voted Enid High School's most valuable player last season ... threw for 783 yards and 10 touchdowns, while rushing for three touchdowns ... a three-year letterman at Enid ... played wide receiver as a junior, catching nine passes for 146 yards and two touchdowns ... as a sophomore, broke off a 73-yard touchdown run ... one of the state's top track stars ... a three-year letterman in track ... a three-time state qualifier ... part of the 4 x 400 relay team that placed fourth at the state meet last year ... involved with the Spanish Club, Journalism Club and Kitty Hawk for ROTC ... high school coach - Ed Jones ... intends to major in nutrition and fitness ... son of Lewis and Alicia Hibbets ... father owns his own business, mother is a financial director ... born Nov. 22, 1982.

TE/DL, 6-4, 220, Tyler, Texas (John Tyler)
Talented tight end prospect with good size and athleticism ... rated among the top 60 tight ends in the country by Rivals.com ... played for a high school team that reached the state finals in 2001 ... second team all-district performer and team captain last year ... earned honorable mention all-district as a junior ... caught seven passes in his career and scored two touchdowns ... ran an impressive 4.68 40-yard dash at Nike Camp this past summer ... high school coach - Allen Wilson ... intends to pursue a degree in law ... son of Henry Hill and Andrea Howard ... born Nov. 10, 1982.

JR., RB/LB, 6-0, 215, St. Louis, Mo. (Parkway South)
All-state linebacker and running back out of Parkway South High School in St. Louis ... rated among the top 35 linebacker prospects in the country by Rivals.com ... rated the top linebacker in the state of Missouri and No. 5 overall player in the state by MoKan.com ... two-time all-metro and all-district performer ... two-time team MVP ... rushed for over 1,400 yards the last two seasons and scored 20 touchdowns ... outstanding defensive player who registered over 350 tackles the last three seasons ... had 11 quarterback sacks as a junior and recovered two fumbles as a senior ... his 11 sacks and 143 tackles as a junior are both Parkway South High School records ... also lettered in wrestling and track ... high school coach - Tom Dailey ... intends to major in business ... son of Emmett Sr. and Angela Morris ... father played at Missouri ... born Oct. 26, 1983.

QB/ATH., 6-1, 190, Dallas, Texas (W.W. Samuell)
One of the best players out of the Dallas, Texas area and rated as one of the top 100 players in the state of Texas ... ranked among the top 35 "dual purpose" quarterbacks in the country by Rivals.com ... has been clocked at 4.36 seconds in the 40-yard dash ... excellent athlete who earned District Player of the Year honors as a senior and was tabbed a preseason All-American ... rushed for over 1000 yards and nine touchdowns in 2001 while completing 33-of-62 passes for 579 yards and five touchdowns ... played in the Coca-Cola All-Star Game ... a first team all-district player as a junior and tabbed a finalist for the Christian Athlete of the Year ... one of the top underclassmen in the state of Texas and was named W.W. Samuell High School's Offensive Player of the Year ... rushed for 791 yards and six touchdowns while passing for 352 yards ... earned District Sophomore of the Year honors in 1999 ... three-year letterman in basketball and four-year letterman in track ... a two-time all-district basketball player and a two-time regional qualifier in the hurdles ... a member of Fellowship of Christian Athletes, National Honor Society and Student Council ... high school coach - Steve Pierce ... intends to major in graphic design ... son of David and Johnnie Overstreet ... father is deceased, mother is a phone agent ... born May 26, 1983.

P/PK, 6-4, 180, Carrollton, Texas (Newman Smith)
Excellent punter/kicker prospect of Carrollton, Texas ... ranked among the top 15 kickers in the country by Rivals.com ... has good size and a strong leg ... two-time special teams most valuable player at Newman Smith High School ... selected an all-district punter as a senior and an all-Metrocrest kicker as junior ... never missed a PAT in high school and had a long field goal of 35 yards ... also lettered in soccer as a senior ... high school coach - Andy Sexton ... intends to major in journalism or communications ... son of John and Nelly Pettersen ... born April 21, 1984.

OL, 6-4, 310, Visalia, Calif. (College of Sequoias)
Rated as one of the best junior college offensive line prospects in the country ... earned first team all-Valley Conference last season at the College of Sequoias ... a two-time all-conference selection at Mt. Whitney High School ... a three-year high school letterman ... also a two-time all-area pick and voted the "Defensive Player of the Year" in the area as a senior ... an accomplished basketball player as well, earning all-conference honors ... high school coach - Charlie Casale ... intends to major in agricultural business ... son of Ruben and Raquel Sanchez ... father is a farmer ... born Nov. 7, 1981.

TE/DL, 6-4, 220, Denton, Texas (Denton Ryan)
One of top pass rushers out of the state of Texas ... rated among the top 30 "weak-side" defensive ends in the country by Rivals.com ... rated the 50th top player in the state of Texas by the Dallas Morning News ... a two-time all-state selection and two-time Denton High School Defensive Player of the Year ... led his Denton Ryan team to the state title in 2001 ... as a senior, tallied 160 tackles and 35 quarterback sacks ... also recovered four fumbles ... as a junior, made 103 tackles, 20 of those were quarterback sacks ... a four-time letterman ... high school coach - Joey Florence ... son of Arthur and Fredia Montgomery ... born Sept. 16, 1983.

RB/DB, 6-1, 220, St. Louis, Mo. (University City)
All-state running back out of St. Louis who has great size and speed ... rated among the top 30 "all-purpose" running backs in the country by Rivals.com ... rated the No. 2 running back and fifth best player in the MoKan. region by MoKan.com ... first team all-state selection and the west district "Player of the Year" ... also earned first team all-metro and first team all-suburban south ... is the all-time rushing leader at University City High School, rushing for 4,295 yards and 62 touchdowns ... rushed for 2,051 yards on 191 carries last year, averaging 10.7 yards per carry ... scored 24 touchdowns ... scored 12 touchdowns as a junior and rushed for 1,086 yards, earning second team all-suburban south honors ... as a sophomore, rushed for 24 touchdowns, carrying 130 times for 1,035 yards ... also returned a kickoff for a touchdown last year and defensively, recovered two fumbles ... a track star who qualified for the state meet in the 4 x 100 relay and was a sectional qualifier in the 100m dash ... volunteers as a coach for the University City Junior Football League ... also a member of the Omega Squires ... high school coach - Lafayette Gatewood III. ... son of Francesca Lyons ... born April 2, 1983.

OL/DL, 6-6, 285, Moore, Okla. (Moore)
Big lineman out of Moore, Okla. who played for one of the best high school football programs in the state ... rated among the top 70 offensive tackle prospects in the nation by Rivals.com ... team captain last season of his team that reached the state quarterfinals ... an all-Big City and first team all-conference selection as a defensive lineman ... as a junior, helped lead Moore High School to the state semifinals ... new Mizzou teammate J.D. McCoy is also a graduate of Moore High School ... high school coach - Tom Noles ... intends to major in business ... son of Philip and Rachael Tizzio ... born Feb. 2, 1983.

LB, 6-3, 240, Pomona, Calif. (Mount San Antonio J.C.)
Outstanding junior college linebacker ... earned first team all-Mission Conference last year and was voted his team's best linebacker ... registered 13 quarterback sacks and 84 tackles ... voted the CIF Conference "Defensive Player of the Year" as a senior at Pomona High School ... led his team with 144 tackles and nine quarterback sacks ... had two interceptions ... also earned first team all-conference as a junior, racking up 112 tackles and nine quarterback sacks ... a two-time all-CIF Conference basketball player ... averaged 22.5 points per game as a senior ... junior college coach - Bill Fisk ... son of David and Tulei Uiagalelei ... born Aug. 8, 1980.

DL, 6-2, 270, Miami, Fla. (West Hills J.C.)
Talented defensive lineman who was a first team all-California Valley Conference selection last year at West Hills Junior College ... voted team most valuable player ... registered 46 tackles, five losses, and five quarterback sacks ... also had three pass break-ups ... enjoyed an outstanding high school career at Miami Northwestern High School ... posted 15 quarterback sacks in his career and helped lead his team to the state championship as a junior ... a member of the Boys and Girls Club of Miami Northwestern and a 500 Role Model ... junior college coach - Mark Gritton, high school coach - R. Smith ... intends to major in education ... son of Dalene Brown ... born April 24, 1982.

RB/DB, 6-0, 185, Jackson, Mo. (Jackson)
One of the most sought after running back prospects in the country ... ranked as the fifth-best "all-purpose" running back in the country by Rivals.com and among the top 75 prospects in the country ... rated as the ninth-best running back in the nation by SuperPrep ... rated the No. 1 running back and the No. 1 player in the MoKan. region by MoKan.com ... holds a Missouri state record of 9.3 yards per carry in his career at Jackson High School ... rushed for 5,027 yards on 560 carries and totaled 544 career points ... scored 90 career touchdowns ... carried 290 times for 2,782 yards and 43 touchdowns as a senior, earning all-state and all-region honors ... broke the state record with 463 yards in one game ... earned all-state and all-region honors as a junior, and was the Southeast Missouri scoring champion both his junior and senior campaigns ... earned the Carr Trophy recognizing the best player in Southeast Missouri in 2001 ... also an all-state track performer in the 100 and 200 meter dashes ... best time in the 100m dash is 10.43 seconds ... ran the 200m dash in 21.78 seconds ... high school coach - Carl Gross ... intends to major in communications ... son of Steven and Carla Whitney ... born Oct. 11, 1983.

TE/DL, 6-6, 250, St. Peters, Mo. (Ft. Zumwalt South)
Ranked as the No. 2 high school prospect in the state of Missouri behind Mario Whitney and rated the No. 3 tight end in the country by SuperPrep ... Rivals.com ranks him among the top 10 tight ends in the country ... rated as the No. 1 tight end and fourth overall best overall player in the state of Missouri by MoKan.com ... two-time all-state and all-metro performer ... also a first team all-conference selection ... big, athletic tight end who caught 25 passes for 508 yards and five touchdowns last season ... had 26 catches for 489 yards and 6 TDs as a junior ... high school coach - Don Morris ... intends to major in criminology ... son of Curt and Elizabeth Zwilling ... born March 27, 1984.


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