Utah State football head coach Matt Wells announced Friday the addition of two linebackers to its 2016 Signing Class in prep standout Kevin Meitzenheimer, Jr. and junior college transfer Patrick Miranda.
Meitzenheimer (Mitz-en-hi-mur), a 6-foot-2, 220-pounder from Moreno Valley (Calif.) High School earned California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) second-team all-state honors at linebacker as a prep senior as he recorded 167 tackles, which included 4.0 sacks and 7.0 tackles for loss, while adding two interceptions and a forced fumble. He was also named the Division Eastern (IX) co-Defensive MVP and the Mountain Valley League Defensive MVP as he helped Moreno Valley HS to an 11-1 record and a league championship as the Vikings posted a perfect 5-0 mark.
As a senior, Meitzenheimer recorded double-digit tackles in all 11 games, including a career-high-tying 19 stops against Beaumont HS. He also had 2.0 sacks and 4.0 tackles for loss as part of his 17 total tackles against Palm Desert HS, and had 2.0 sacks and 3.0 tackles for loss as part of his 17 stops against Apple Valley HS. He also scored one defensive touchdown on the season as he returned an interception 45 yards for a score against Jurupa Hills HS. Offensively, Meitzenheimer caught 16 passes for 313 yards (19.6 ypr) as a prep senior and two touchdowns, both of which came against West Valley HS as he had two receptions for 93 yards with two scores.
Meitzenheimer, who also played basketball and competed in track & field in high school, recorded 72 tackles in just six games as a junior as he had four double-digit tackle outings, including a career-high 19 stops against Colton HS. He also added one interception and one forced fumble during the year, to go along with five receptions for 84 yards on offense.
Miranda, a 6-foot, 240-pounder earned California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) first-team all-state and first-team all-region honors at linebacker as a sophomore at Chabot Junior College in Hayward, Calif., as he helped the Gladiators to a 9-3 record, a Valley League Championship with a perfect 5-0 mark, and an appearance in the Northern California Football Association (NCFA) Championship Game.
During his sophomore season, Miranda recorded 102 tackles, which included 1.0 sacks and 4.5 tackles for loss, to go along with one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. In all, he had four double-digit tackle outings during the season, including a career-high 19 tackles against Modesto JC. He also recorded 14 tackles and 2.0 tackles for loss against Feather River JC, and 11 tackles and 2.0 tackles for loss against Fresno JC.
As a freshman at Chabot JC in 2014, Miranda earned first-team California Community College Football Coaches Association All-America honors, as well as first-team all-state and all-region honors, as he recorded 118 tackles, which included 2.0 sacks and 9.5 tackles for loss, to go along with one interception and one fumble recovery. Overall, he had six double-digit tackle games as a freshman, including a career-high 22 tackles against Modesto JC.
Prior to college, Miranda spent one season at Jireh Prep in Charlotte, N.C., and prepped at St. Raphael Academy in Pawtucket, R.I., where he earned first-team all-state honors and was named the Providence Gridiron Club Defensive MVP of his team as a prep senior, along with earning all-division honors for three-straight seasons from his sophomore to senior year as he recorded a school-record 323 career tackles, while rushing for over 600 yards and five touchdowns.