Indiana signs speed while Purdue gets familiar names
Thursday, February 07, 2013 10:00 AM
INDIANAPOLIS - Indiana coach Kevin Wilson spent the offseason trying to fill in some big holes.
He wanted more speed, more size, more power and better defenders.
By adding 22 players to the roster Wednesday, Wilson believes he's off to a good start. The Hoosiers signed five players from their own state, led by highly-touted defensive back Antonio Allen, and got nearly as many players from three prime high school football states -- Florida, Georgia and Ohio.
"I do think we got guys that fit us. So I'm not surprised," Wilson said. "We're going to keep doing good, keep doing better because this program deserves to be consistently good."
Purdue signed 23 players to national letters-of-intent in coach Darrell Hazell's first recruiting class including what may be the best senior quarterback in the state -- 6-foot-3 Danny Etling, Terre Haute native.
Even without signing a quarterback, Indiana's coaches could see how much progress they had made when the paperwork started rolling in Wednesday morning.
Outsiders believe it's a good class, too. Some have even dubbed it the best recruiting class in school history.
On paper, the Hoosiers filled a host of needs, particularly on a defense that has had trouble stopping opponents the last two years. They got the hard-hitting Allen, who was considered one of the best defensive backs in the nation and the first to send in his national letter-of-intent. They also got speedy cornerback Rashard Fant, an athlete that defensive coaches hope they can keep on their side of the field.
Indiana added size by signing 6-foot-5, 291-pound defensive tackle Darius Latham, who doubles as a basketball player at Indianapolis North Central; 305-pound defensive tackle Maurice Swain, who also played on the offensive line in high school; 260-pound defensive end Patrick Dougherty of Aurora, Ohio and 250-pound defensive end David Kenney of Indianapolis Pike.
And the Hoosiers brought in three junior college players - 315-pound defensive tackle Chris Cormier, 231-pound linebacker Steven Funderburk and 280-pound defensive tackle Jordan Heiderman. Funderburk and Heiderman were teammates on Iowa Western's national championship team last season.
"Chris is a true freak show from the swamp," co-defensive coordinator Doug Mallory said referring to the Louisiana native nicknamed "first round" during a broadcast on BTN.com, a webcast associated with the conference's television network.
"He's legit now, you can see his quickness off the ball. He's got great hips and he just plays angry," Mallory added. "You toss him in there with Latham and Heiderman and we really addressed our needs."
Offensively, the Hoosiers only added a handful of players though it wasn't quantity the Hoosiers were after.
They got two of the nation's fastest sprinters in receiver Anthony Young of Lakewood St. Edward in Ohio and Laray Smith, an athlete from Staten Island, N.Y.; two 240-pound tight ends, two running backs and receiver Isaac Griffith, the son of Manchester College coach Shannon Griffith.
"You look at those track guys, put them with Nick Stoner and I told the track coaches that we're going to have a heck of a 4x100 relay team," Wilson said. "But what I like is the speed of the other guys. The really good teams have overall team speed, and I'm maybe more pleased with the overall speed of the recruits than I am the guys with the track speed."
What the Boilermakers have is a versatile group of players with plenty of name recognition.
Among those signing with the Boilermakers were Keith Byars III, son of the former Ohio State running back who played in the NFL, and defensive end Jake Replogle, who bucked the family trend after watching three older brothers play at rival Indiana. Linebacker Garrett Hudson, the son of Purdue's new defensive coordinator, Greg Hudson, is expected to play for the Boilermakers but was not included on the official list of signees.
And in the cases of Byars and Hudson, the fathers and sons aren't that much different.
Running backs coach Jafar Williams called Byars a physical runner, who can go from 0 to 60 mph in "about one second," rekindling images of his father. Greg Hudson was a linebacker at Notre Dame before pursuing his career in coach.
That's not all, though.
"I think if you study them, the thing that you see is that it's a vibrant class with a lot of guys who can play different positions," Hazell said. "The corners can play safety, the safeties can play corner and there's a lot of linebackers who can put their hands in the dirt. I think there's a lot of defensive linemen who can standup and play on their feet. So that's one of things that we liked in this class."
Clearly, the coaching change had an impact on the Boilermakers' class, too.
Ten of the expected signees committed to Purdue before Danny Hope was fired in November or Hazell was hired in early December. All but one of the other waited until at least January before committing to the Boilermakers.
Hazell also used his previous recruiting ties to supplement a program that had recruited Florida more heavily than Indiana over the past several years.
This time, the Boilermakers signed three in-state players including Etling, who is already enrolled at Purdue. It also happened to be the first stop on Hazell's recruiting tour.
"He was my very first recruit at Purdue so that will always be special," Hazell said. "He's a very mature guy, well beyond his years. He's very focused and he knows what he wants. He's going to be a great player for us."
He also nabbed five players each from Florida, Georgia and Ohio.
Ball State added 21 players including quarterback Jack Milas of Arlington Heights, Ill., and 6-5, 255-pound offensive lineman Jarrid Lloyd, whose grandfather, Dick Elson Lloyd, played for the Chicago Cubs.
"We have added a lot of talent to our roster with this class, but perhaps more importantly, we are surrounding ourselves with some terrific leaders and charismatic personalities," coach Pete Lembo said.
Indiana State signed 19 players early in the day, including punter Rhys Felton, who grew up playing Australian Rules Football; quarterback Matt Adam from Camino Capistrano, Calif.; and receiver Juice Davis, whose father, Robert, played college football at Mississippi Valley State.
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Antonio Allen, db, 5-10, 205, Ben Davis HS, Indianapolis
Daryl Chestnut, rb, 5-10, 190, Christopher Columbus HS, Miami
Christopher Cormier, dl, 6-2, 315, Arizona Western CC, New Iberia, La.
Patrick Dougherty, dl, 6-5, 260, Aurora (Ohio) HS
Chase Dutra, ath, 6-1, 205, Brownsburg (Ind.) HS
Rashard Fant, db, 5-10, 165, Our Lady of Mercy HS, Atlanta
Danny Friend, te, 6-5, 240, Morris (Ill.) HS
Steven Funderburk, lb, 6-3, 231, Iowa Western CC, Port St. Lucie, Fla.
Myles Graham, rb, 6-2, 215, Chaminade Madonna College Prep HS, Miami
Isaac Griffith, wr, 6-0, 180, Homestead HS, Fort Wayne, Ind.
Jordan Heiderman, dl, 6-3, 280, Iowa Western CC, Norfolk, Neb.
Evan Jansen, te, 6-4, 245, Moeller HS, Mason, Ohio
David Kenney, dl, 6-2, 250, Pike HS, Indianapolis
Darius Latham, dl, 6-5, 291, North Central HS, Indianapolis
Clyde Newton, ath, 6-1, 215, Charlotte HS, Punta Gorda, Fla.
Marcus Oliver, lb, 6-1, 220, Hamilton (Ohio) HS
Noel Padmore, db, 5-11, 175, Flowery Branch (Ga.) HS
T.J. Simmons, lb, 6-0, 230, Lakeland (Fla.) HS
Kris Smith, lb, 6-2, 215, Flowery Branch (Ga.) HS
Laray Smith, ath, 6-0, 185, Xaverian HS, Staten Island, N.Y.
Maurice Swain, dl, 6-5, 305, Troup HS, LaGrange, Ga.
Anthony Young, wr, 6-1, 175, St. Edward HS, Lakewood, Ohio
Matt Burke, te, 6-6, 220, Cardinal Newman HS, West Palm Beach, Fla.
Keith Byars III, rb, 5-10, 200, Milford Academy, Boca Raton, Fla.
Leroy Clark, db, 5-10, 175, Archbishop Carroll HS, Miami
Johnny Daniels, dt, 6-5, 255, Foreman HS, Chicago
Dalyn Dawkins, rb, 5-9, 175, Trinity HS, Louisville
Danny Etling, qb, 6-3, 218, Terre Haute (Ind.) South Vigo HS
Danny Ezechukwu, lb, 6-3, 240, Arabia Mountain HS, Lithonia, Ga.
Keyante Green, rb, 5-9, 205, Eagle's Landing Christian, McDonough, Ga.
Ra'Zahn Howard, dt, 6-4, 315, Atlanta Sports Academy, Dawsonville, Ga.
Da'Wan Hunte, cb, 5-10, 180, Miami Central HS, Miami
Tyvel Jemison, cb, 5-11, 175, Bishop Luers HS, Fort Wayne, Ind.
Austin Logan, s, 6-0, 190, Florida HS, Tallahassee, Fla.
Antoine Miles, de, 6-3, 250, McKinley HS, Canton, Ohio
Dan Monteroso, wr, 6-3, 185, Saint Clairsville (Ohio) HS
Myles Norwood, wr, 6-0, 185, Grace Prep, Arlington, Texas
Evan Panfil, de, 6-5, 240, Lincoln Way Central HS, New Lennox, Ill.
Dezwan Polk-Campbell, lb, 6-4, 215, Whetstone HS, Columbus, Ohio
Jake Replogle, de, 6-4, 240, Centerville (Ohio) HS
John Strauser, de, 6-4, 235, High School of Saint Thomas More, Champaign, Ill.
Johnny Thompson, lb, 6-3, 200, Apalachee HS, Winder , Ga.
Jason Tretter, ol, 6-6, 300, Revere HS, Richfield, Ohio
David Yancey, rb, 5-10, 205, Lake Central HS, Saint John, Ind.
Deangelo Yancey, wr, 6-2, 200, Mays HS, Atlanta
Jeff Badet, wr, 6-0, 170, Freedom HS, Orlando, Fla.
Alvonte Bell, de, 6-5, 255, Everglades HS, Miramar, Fla.
Javess Blue, wr, 6-0, 190, Lake Wales/Butler CC, Babson Park, Fla.
Steven Borden, te, 6-3, 250, Waxahachie (Texas) HS/Kilgore College
Justin Day, ot, 6-8, 305, South Aiken (S.C.) HS
Jason Hatcher, de, 6-3, 250, Trinity HS, Louisville, Ky.
Nick Haynes, ol, 6-3, 305, Niceville (Fla.) HS
Jacob Hyde, dl, 6-2, 330, Clay County HS, Manchester, Ky.
Jaleel Hytchye, cb, 5-10, 175, La Salle HS, Cincinnati
Jojo Kemp, rb, 5-10, 190, Deland (Fla.) HS
Austin MacGinnis, k, 5-10, 175, Prattville (Ala.) HS
Blake McClain, db, 5-11, 190, Winter Park (Fla.) HS
Marcus McWilson, s, 6-0, 210, Cardinal Mooney HS, Youngstown, Ohio
Kyle Meadows, 6-5, 270, Lakota West HS, West Chester, Ohio
Regie Meant, dl, 6-4, 275, Baker HS, Cape Coral, Fla.
Ramsey Meyers, ol, 6-4, 290, Ridgeview HS, Orange Park, Fla.
Alex Montgomery, wr, 6-2, 210, Cypress Bay HS, Weston, Fla.
Reese Phillips, qb, 6-2, 225, Signal Mountain (Tenn.) HS
Za'Darius Smith, de, 6-6, 250, Greenville (Ala.) HS/Mississippi CC
Khalid Thomas, rb, 5-10, 170, Godby HS, Tallahassee, Fla.
Ryan Timmons, ath, 5-10, 185, Franklin County HS, Frankfort, Ky.
Nate Willis, db, 6-0, 180, Pahokee (Fla.) HS/Arizona Western College
Willie Bailey, cb, 6-2, 172, Hallandale (Fla.) HS/Univ. of Florida
Richard Benjamin, cb, 6-1, 195, Tampa Bay (Fla.) Technical HS
Kyle Bolin, qb, 6-3, 185, Lexington (Ky.) Catholic HS
Chandler Bridgers, ol, 6-4, 270, Flowery Branch (Ga.) HS
Lyn Clark, lb, 6-2, 225 O. Perry Walker HS, New Orleans
Donel Elam, s, 6-1, 200, Fleming Island HS, Orange Park, Fla.
Cameron Fraser, ol, 6-4, 290, Central HS, Phenix City, Ala.
Keith Kelsey, lb, 6-1, 217, Gainesville (Fla.) HS
Skylar Lacy, ol, 6-6, 290, Southport HS, Indianapolis
Finesse Middleton, de, 5-11, 255, Gadsden City (Ala.) HS
Brett Nelson, qb, 6-4, 220, Southwestern CC, Chula Vista, Calif.
James Quick, wr, 6-1, 180, Trinity HS, Louisville
De'Asian Richardson, de, 6-3, 285, First Coast HS, Jacksonville, Fla.
Terrance Ross, s, 6-2, 188, Wekiva HS, Apopka, Fla.
Kyle Shortridge, dt, 6-2, 273, Seminole Ridge HS, Loxahatchee, Fla.
Keith Towbridge, te, 6-3, 230, Central Catholic HS, Toledo, Ohio
Chucky Williams, cb, 6-2, 180, Champagnat Catholic School, Hialeah, Fla.
Hunter Bivin, ol, 6-6, 290, Apollo HS, Owensboro, Ky.
Greg Bryant, rb, 5-11, 200, American Heritage HS, Delray Beach, Fla.
Devin Butler, db, 6-1, 180, Gonzaga Prep HS, Washington, D.C.
Michael Deeb, lb, 6-2, 235, American Heritage HS, Plantation, Fla.
Steve Elmer, ol, 6-5, 300, Midland (Mich.) HS
William Fuller, wr, 6-1, 180, Roman Catholic HS, Philadelphia
Tarean Folston, rb, 5-10, 190, Cocoa (Fla.) HS
Mike Heuerman, te, 6-4, 225, Barron Collier HS, Naples, Fla.
Torii Hunter Jr., wr, 6-0, 180, Prosper (Texas) HS
Rashad Kinlaw, db, 5-11, 185, Absegami HS, Galloway, N.J.
Cole Luke, db, 6-0, 180, Hamilton HS, Chandler, Ariz.
Jacob Matuska, dl, 6-4, 255, Bishop Hartley HS, Columbus, Ohio
Mike McGlinchey, ol, 6-7, 280, William Penn Charter HS, Philadelphia
Colin McGovern, ol, 6-5, 280, Lincoln-Way West HS, New Lenox, Ill.
John Montelus, ol, 6-5, 305, Everett (Mass.) HS
James Onwualu, wr, 6-1, 210, Cretin-Derham Hall HS, St. Paul, Minn.
Doug Randolph, db, 6-3, 230, Woodberry Forest HS, Richmond, Va.
Max Redfield, db, 6-2, 195, Mission Viejo (Calif.) HS
Corey Robinson, wr, 6-5, 190, San Antonio (Texas) Christian HS
Isaac Rochell, dl, 6-5, 265, Eagle's Landing Christian HS, McDonough, Ga.
Jaylon Smith, db, 6-3, 220, Bishop Luers HS, Fort Wayne, Ind.
Durham Smythe, te, 6-5, 230, Belton (Texas) HS
Malik Zaire, qb, 6-1, 190, Archbishop Alter HS, Kettering, Ohio
Chris Blair, db, 5-11, 196, East Forsyth HS, Winston-Salem, N.C.
Calvin Blank, te, 6-4, 234, Terre Haute (Ind.) North HS
Aaron Clay, wr, 5-11, 201, Eastern Alamance, Mebane, N.C.
Steve Drida, k-p, 6-0, 187, Waukesha (Wis). West HS
Blake Dueitt, dl, 6-1, 251, W.A. Hough HS, Cornelius, N.C.
Daniel Garces, dl, 6-1, 223, Providence HS, Matthews, N.C.
Nicholas Isaacs, lb, 6-1, 235, Withrow HS, Cincinnati
Jarrid Lloyd, ol, 6-5, 255, Benet Academy, Naperville, Ill.
Pat Maloney, ol, 6-2, 274, Maine South HS, Niles, Ill.
Stephan Martin, lb, 5-11, 226, Lakeland HS, Lake Alfred, Fla.
Jack Milas, qb, 6-1, 199, Rolling Meadows HS, Arlington Heights, Ill.
David Moore, db, 5-9, 167, Butler HS, Matthews, N.C.
Vinnie Palazeti, ol, 6-4, 284, Powers Catholic HS, Owosso, Mich.
Damerrian Petty, dl, 6-1, 288, Burns HS, Shelby, N.C.
P.J. Scott, ol, 6-2, 293, Morris (Okla.) HS
Ralph Smith, db, 5-8, 164, Avon (Ind.) HS
Stu Stanley, lb, 6-0, 207, Cathedral HS, Indianapolis
Haris Vrabac, ol, 6-7, 337, Warrant Mott HS, Warren, Mich.
Sean Wiggins, lb, 6-2, 226, Butler HS, Mint Hill, N.C.
Teddy Williamson, rb, 5-9, 171, Fort Zumwalt West HS, O'Fallon, Mo.
Anthony Winbush, dl, 6-1, 207, Warren Central HS, Indianapolis
Maurice Bennett, dl, 6-3, 300, East Mississippi CC, Madison, Miss.
Raphael Cox, dl, 6-3, 270, Trinity Valley CC, Cedar Hill, Texas
Drew Davis, lb, 6-1, 215, Bob Jones HS, Madison, Ala.
John Delaney, ol, 6-6, 310, Ventura (Calif.) CC, Fort Worth, Texas
Devante Duclos, lb, 6-0, 216, Miami (Fla.) Central HS
Joe Fennell, ol, 6-5, 320, South Fort Myers (Fla.) HS
Juwan Gardner, db, 6-1, 200, DuPont Manual HS, Louisville, Ky.
DeMarcus Glover, dl, 6-4, 240, Pine Forest HS, Pensacola, Fla.
Rashad Greene, db, 6-1, 175, Southwestern College, Daytona Beach, Fla.
D'Von Isaac, dl, 6-4, 275, Alpharetta (Ga.) HS
Aaron Jackson, wr, 6-3, 185, Frankfort (Ky.) HS
Shaquille Johnson, te, 6-4, 215, Columbia HS, Lake City, Fla.
Kyle Jones, ol, 6-4, 300, Mulberry (Fla.) HS
Cam Lewis, wr, 6-3, 205, Ballard HS, Louisville, Ky.
Justin Martinez, ol, 6-3, 275, St. Lucie West Centennial HS, Port St. Lucie, Fla.
Nicholas Norris, wr, 5-10, 170, Booker T. Washington HS, Miami
Joe Occhipinti, k, 6-3, 190, Hillsboro HS, Nashville, Tenn.
Dalton Patterson, db, 6-3, 195, Arkansas Baptist College, New Orleans
Connor Popeck, ol, 6-4, 280, Itawamba (Miss.) CC, Olive Branch, Miss.
Todd Porter, qb, 6-3, 195, O'Fallon (Ill.) HS
Brandon Ray, ol, 6-3, 285, Bob Jones HS, Madison, Ala.
Tanner Reeves, dl, 6-4, 230, George Jenkins HS, Lakeland, Fla.
Kalvin Robinson, dl, 6-5, 225, Vestavia Hills HS, Birmingham, Ala.
Donald Rocker, ol, 6-4, 296, Sandalwood HS, Jacksonville, Fla.
De'Andre Simmons, db, 5-11, 180, Royal Palm Beach (Fla.) HS
Jimmie Simms, ol, 6-5, 290, McDonogh 35 HS, New Orleans
Isaac Tanner, lb, 6-0, 223, Freedom HS, Tampa, Fla.
Taywan Taylor, wr, 6-1, 185, Pleasure Ridge Park HS, Louisville, Ky.
Kylen Towner, wr, 5-9, 165, St. Paul's Episcopal School, Mobile, Ala.
Lonnie Turner, wr, 5-10, 180, Los Angeles Harbor, Inglewood, Calif.
Marcus Ward, db, 6-3, 204, Vestavia Hills HS, Birmingham, Ala.
Derrell Young, olb, 6-1, 205, Boyd H. Anderson HS, Lauderdale Lakes, Fla.