It was a typical recruiting cycle for Utah as did what they always do in recruiting; landed some solid in-state prospects, found some under-the-radar kids, and added some beef.
Return Missionaries- The Utes loaded up on a bunch of sign and send prospects with five total, including a few guys who could use some time to let their body grown and add weight. James Empey is the headliner of the group that won't enroll until 2017 and he should be a future starter on the offensive line. The return missionary program Utah has going has been somewhat hit and miss over the years, but is a necessary part of what makes Utah football what it is.
California Dreaming- Landing 10 players out of the Golden State is an impressive haul, especially considering the low numbers in past cycles. Still waiting to get that big-time prospect, but building the in-roads in one of the three 'big recruiting states' is imperative to future success there. Aaron Roderick and Jim Harding really put in work in Southern and Northern California, respectively.
More Big-Uglies- The offensive line haul was more than impressive as Utah landed 6 guys to protect their future signal callers. We've mentioned Empey, but the biggest coup may have been landing Darrin Paulo, who the Utes were able to beat out Nebraska for, and has unlimited upside.
Florida Pipeline Stays Open- Wasn't as good as it could have been due to some late departures and Sitake moving to Oregon State, but two of the more ready-to-play prospects in Chris Hart and Tyson Cisrow (high school teammates) jumped on board and are coming to Salt Lake City. Keep the pipeline flowing.
In-State Misses- Kyle Whittingham has continually said that Utah must keep the local kids at home. That didn't happen in this class as the top ranked players went elsewhere, including five different four stars or better. To make matters worse, they were poached by Pac 12 rivals, meaning Utah now has to face them. Keep the top-end local guys or home at you're not going to take the next step. It's that simple.
Texas Abandoned- Utah landed only two prospects from the Lone Star State, a place they used to hit heavily. Talent was down there and they didn't use nearly the resources they have in the past, but the only two gets were guys that didn't have any other options in Kautai and Fulks.
No Immediate Line Help- Utah's offensive line class is stellar as they addressed the need for high schools tackles. The one thing they weren't able to do was bring in a JC tackle that could play right away. One things went sour with Zach Lindsey's academics, the Utes were pretty much out of luck as the JC OL class this year was pretty thin.
The Oregon State Problem- The Beavers ended up flipping four players that were commits to Utah. Gary Andersen and Kalani Sitake are going to recruit the Beehive State heavily going forward and this is something the Utes will need to find a way of putting a stop to.
Top Flight Misses- Still waiting for Utah to land that commit that, on paper, is a program changer.
Solid class for Utah, and a typical one at that. Some fans might not be happy with the final 48 hours as they watched other Pac 12 schools like USC, UCLA, ASU get the nod in multiple signing day announcements. That's not Utah's game though, and they're often going to be on the outside looking in with many of those players. The last two weeks as a whole should be the focus though as Utah closed strong, addressed needs, found some guys that have a lot of potential, and made their program better today than it was yesterday. It's taking longer than we anticipated, but the Utes continue to take baby steps towards contention.
Wrapping Up the 2015 Class
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