Welcome to another edition of Recruiting Roundup! We have a ton of updates on the class of 2015. A big piece of the class nearly signed, sealed, and delivered. The class shrunk by one, but it could grow in a big way on Friday morning.
Four-star linebacker C.J. Stalker took his official visit to grounds at the beginning of the month, and the Ohio native is now one step closer to Virginia. Stalker will graduate high school this month, and enroll at UVa in January. The 6-2, 223 pound linebacker will be in Charlottesville for spring practice, and his timing could not be any better. The Wahoos will graduate starting linebackers Henry Coley and Daquan Romero, as well as reserve D.J. Hill, and Stalker will be right in the thick of things to compete for early playing time. Stalker is the second member of the class of 2015 to announce his intentions to enroll early, along with offensive lineman Grant Polk, who has already singed his grant-in-aid with UVa.
Washington D.C. linebacker Kareem McDonald committed to Virginia with great fanfare on August 5th, but the talented defender announced on twitter last Friday that he will not attend UVa. McDonald was once committed to ODU, but selected the Cavaliers back in August, just hours before Jahovoni Simmons climbed aboard as well. We’re not going to delve into the matter any further, but we certainly wish McDonald the best of luck. He is a heck of a young man, and has a bright football future ahead of him.
For several years now, Wahoo fans have been closely following the recruitment of four-star linebacker Ricky DeBerry. On Friday morning at long last, DeBerry will announce his decision. DeBerry holds 70, that’s right 70 offers, but narrowed his final list to eight schools. His finalists include Alabama, Michigan State, Oklahoma, Penn State, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Virginia, and Virginia Tech. Head coach Mike London and Marquis Hagans visited DeBerry in his home last week, as the talented defender began to enter the stretch run of his recruitment. DeBerry is plenty familiar with the UVa program and has been the Charlottesville many times, but obviously, there is a lot of competition here. Virginia certainly has a shot, but conventional wisdom says that the Sooners are the favorite here. Regardless of what happens on Friday morning, London has done a tremendous job keeping pace with some of College football’s elite. UVa has a chance, but we’ll see what happens on Friday.
For quite some time now, three-star safety John Petrishen has been focused on UVa and Pitt, but things became more complicated on Thanksgiving weekend, when Penn State threw its hat in the race. With less than two months to go until signing day, the Keystone State native has set official visits to PSU, Pittsburgh, and Virginia. The trips will take place next month, with the Cavaliers getting the all-important final visit before signing day. There are a lot of interesting storylines at play here. Petrishen has been high on the Cavaliers from the start, but Virginia is the only out-of-state finalist. The Nittany Lions are obviously a threat, but did they join the race too late? In addition, there are heavy rumors out there at Pittsburgh head coach Paul Chryst will be leaving for a similar position at Wisconsin as early as this week.
Rest of the Story:
Obviously new targets will surface, but for now UVa is focusing on just a handful of uncommitted guys for 2015.
And they are…
Colonel Forge WR: Gary Jennings
William Fleming WR: Warren Craft
North Central (Rocky Mount NC) DE: Houshun Gains
St. Peters Prep (Jersey City NJ) OLB: Jordan Fox
Gulliver Prep (Miami FL) ILB: Dominic Sheppard
We are the Champions:
Five 2015 UVa commits led their teams to state championships over the weekend.
Juan Thornhill complied nearly 200 yards of total offense, recovered an onside kick, and nearly led his team in tackles in Altavista’s 22-20 victory over Essex in the 1A title game. Thornhill has now won four state titles in high school: two in football and two in basketball.
In the 6A game in Charlottesville, Simmons played middle linebacker and fullback in Ocean Lakes’ 30-24 triumph over Centreville.
Up in Maryland, quarterback commit Nick Johns threw for 120 yards, one touchdown, and two picks in Gonzaga’s 29-6 victory over H.D. Woodson in the D.C. State Athletic Association Class AA Championship.
In Georgia, David Curry returned a punt 40 yards for a touchdown in Buford’s 55-10 triumph over St. Puis in the 4A state title game.
Finally, running back commit Olamide Zaccheus scored a pair of touchdowns on offense, and picked off a pass in the end zone to seal St. Joseph Prep’s 49-41 win over Pine-Richland.
Congrats to all five state champions.
That will do it for today’s roundup. Have a great week everybody.