Miami Football Signs 22 Prep Standouts to National Letters of Intent
Feb. 1, 2006
OXFORD, Ohio -- Miami University head football coach Shane Montgomery announced his first true recruiting class Wednesday, as 22 prep standouts inked their names to National Letters of Intent and committed to joining the program for the upcoming 2006 season. The class is the first recruited exclusively by Montgomery and his current coaching staff and is the largest since Miami signed 24 individuals in 2004.
"Our staff did a tremendous job of evaluating our needs and then going out and signing players who can fill those needs," Montgomery said. "We are excited about this class not only because of the individual athletic backgrounds but also because of their academic backgrounds. We expect a number of these players to have the opportunity to contribute as early as next fall because of the number of seniors we're trying to replace."
True to Montgomery's commitment to recruiting the state of Ohio, 15 of the 22 signees played their high school football in Ohio, while two signees each originated from Georgia and Maryland and one player each hails from Kansas, Pennsylvania and South Dakota. Eight players were signed to the offensive side of the ball, while 13 were defensive signees and one was a special teams addition.
"As always, our recruiting base starts in Ohio, and we were able to sign the majority of our class from Ohio," Montgomery said. "Though we signed a large number of players in this class, our main priorities were at linebacker and the offensive and defensive lines. Our staff did a nice job of addressing those needs with this class."
Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Hometown (HS)
Ben Bennett LB 5-11 210 Capitol Heights, MD (Gwynn Park)
Coach's Comments: A very athletic, physical player ... possesses good speed and a high level of intelligence ... from a traditionally strong program that is producing a number of Division I signees. Notes: Three-year letterwinner as a defensive back and linebacker at Gwynn Park High School, serving as team captain in 2005 ... totaled 119 tackles, five quarterback sacks and an interception during his senior season, helping the Yellow Jackets to a Maryland 3A State Championship ... an All-Metro, All-League and All-County selection as both a junior and senior, earning the honors at both safety and linebacker ... clocked at 4.43 in the 40-yard dash and boasts a 39-inch vertical leap ... coached by Danny Hayes. Other Schools Considered: Maryland, Akron.
Caleb Bostic LB 6-3 215 Galloway, OH (Westland)
Coach's Comments: Rare athlete with an unusual combination of size and speed ... played primarily at tailback and safety in high school but projects to linebacker at the college level ... gifted athlete who also is a standout basketball player. Notes: Lettered three seasons as a tailback and safety at Westland High School, serving as team captain as a senior ... totaled 100 tackles on the defensive side of the field in 2005, while rushing for 650 yards and 10 touchdowns on the offensive side ... an All-League and Honorable Mention All-District pick during his senior season ... coached by Jeff Jones ... also a standout basketball player for the Cougars, earning three varsity letters in basketball and helping Westland to the state semifinals last season. Other Schools Considered: Cincinnati.
John Buckman OL 6-8 330 Garnett, KS (Coffeyville C.C.)
Coach's Comments: Possesses a long frame and athletic feet ... hard worker who hails from a strong junior college program ... talented pass blocker who is expected to get stronger and push for playing time ... already on campus and will be a part of spring camp. Notes: Played two years at offensive tackle for Coffeyville Community College ... helped the Red Ravens to a 9-3 record and Region 6 Championship in 2005 .... helped Coffeyville to a 10-2 mark and No. 3 national ranking in 2004 ... honored as a Second-Team All-Conference pick ... Miami's first junior college signee since 2000 ... coached by Jeff Leiker at Coffeyville C.C. Other Schools Considered: New Mexico State.
Martin Channels DL 6-0 320 Xenia, OH (Wayne)
Coach's Comments: Explosive interior defensive lineman, who has surprising quickness for his size ... disruptive presence on the defensive front with impressive strength ... a nice fit for Miami's defensive scheme. Notes: Three-year letterwinner as a defensive tackle at Wayne and Xenia high schools, playing his senior season at Wayne after playing at Xenia as a sophomore and junior ... helped Wayne to an 11-2 record and Greater Western Ohio Conference Championship in 2005 ... two-time all-conference selection, earning first-team honors as a junior ... selected to Ohio's Tremendous 26 in 2005 .... coached by Jay Minton at Wayne ... prep teammate of fellow RedHawk signee Jeff Cleveland ... also competed as a thrower on the track team, qualifying for U.S. Nationals in the weight throw. Other Schools Considered: Boston College, Indiana, Akron, Ball State.
Jeff Cleveland LB 6-2 220 Huber Heights, OH (Wayne)
Coach's Comments: Another athletic linebacker with good speed and a very physical style of play ... moved to linebacker during his senior year of high school and really took to the position ... versatile player with the ability and football intelligence to contribute at middle or outside linebacker. Notes: Two-year letterwinner as a linebacker and tight end at Wayne High School, serving as team captain during the 2005 season ... helped the Warriors to a GWOC Conference Championship and a Regional Runner-up finish as a senior ... averaged 10.5 tackles per game, including seven tackles for loss and two quarterback sacks as a senior ... a first-team all-conference pick ... named to the Dayton Daily News Division I-II All-Area team ... coached by Jay Minton ... also a two-year letterwinner in basketball. Other Schools Considered: Cincinnati, Kent State.
Trevor Cook PK 6-2 172 Sioux Falls, SD (Washington)
Coach's Comments: Possesses a strong, accurate leg and can contribute on kickoffs and field goal attempts ... has converted from beyond 50 yards during his prep career ... could push for playing time early in his career ... athletic player who also was an All-State goalkeeper on his soccer team. Notes: Helped Washington High School to a record of 25-7 in three years, including two appearances in the state quarterfinals and one trip to the state semifinals ... was the first kicker ever selected to the South Dakota All-Star team in 2006 ... earned all-state and all-conference accolades, both athletically and academically ... made 4-of-7 field goals in his career, including a career-long 56 yarder ... lettered three years in football and four years in soccer ... made .940 (109-of-116) of his career PATs .... 77 % of his career kickoff went for touchbacks. .... coached by Kim Nelson. Other Schools Considered: Stanford, Connecticut.
Peris Edwards DB 6-1 175 Toledo, OH (Rogers)
Coach's Comments: Rangy safety from a strong high school program ... intelligent player with good ball skills ... has the potential to be an impact-type player early in his career. Notes: Three-year letterwinner and two-time team captain while playing a variety of positions at Rogers High School ... led the Rams to a 7-3 record and state playoff berth as a senior ... totaled 44 tackles, 2 forced fumbles and two interceptions in 2005 ... an All-City, All-District, All-Toledo Blade and Honorable Mention All-State selection ... selected to compete in Ohio's North-South All-Star game ... coached by Rick Rios ... also a two-year letterwinner in both basketball and track. Other Schools Considered: Cincinnati, Toledo, Bowling Green, Akron.
Jordan Gafford DB 6-0 195 Columbus, OH (Worthington Kilbourne)
Coach's Comments: Impressive athlete and student ... physical player who is a good tackler ... a coach's son ... versatile athlete who projects to safety at the college level. Notes: Four-year letterwinner and two-time team captain as a quarterback, defensive back and kicker at Worthington Kilbourne .... led the Wolves to a four-year record of 31-16 and a 2004 Regional Championship ... holds school records for single-season (1,757) and career (4,338) total offense as well as for single-season (53) and career (96) solo tackles ... a two-time First-Team All-State selection at safety ... also a two-time OCC Central Division Defensive Player of the Year and the 2005 OHSFCA Region 10 Player of the Year .... selected to compete in the Ohio North-South All-Star game ... coached by Jeff Gafford. Other Schools Considered: Indiana, Cincinnati, Marshall, Louisiana Tech.
Bob Gulley OL 6-4 275 Berea, OH (Berea)
Coach's Comments: Big, physical athlete ... impressed with his competitive level during Miami's senior camp ... versatile athlete who could play a number of positions on the offensive line. Notes: Three-year letterwinner and two-way starter on the Berea offensive and defensive lines, serving as team captain during his senior season ... three-time First-Team All-Pioneer Conference selection as a tackle for the Braves ... two-time Honorable Mention All-Cuyahoga County pick ... rated among the top three offensive linemen at the Nike Football Training Camp and Scout.com Combine ... awarded Top All-Around Lineman at the John Teerlink NFL Big Man Camp .... coached by Bob Cistolo ... also a two-time track and field MVP in the shot put and discus. Other Schools Considered: Toledo, Kent State, Akron, Ohio, Bowling Green.
Donnie Hardy LB 6-1 200 Stone Mountain, GA (Tucker)
Coach's Comments: All-county performer who possesses remarkable speed ... has tremendous upside because of his athleticism ... comes from a strong prep program. Notes: Team captain as a senior for a traditionally strong Tucker High School program ... helped the Tigers to the program's 400th win and a No. 3 state ranking as a senior ... Tucker captured four regional titles during his career ... an honorable mention all-county pick .... coached by Bill Ballard ... also a three-year letterwinner in track and field, running the 4X100 and 4X400-meter relays. Other Schools Considered: Purdue, Vanderbilt, Akron.
Eugene Harris III WR 5-10 180 Atlanta, GA (McNair)
Coach's Comments: Tremendously quick and athletic wide receiver ... good at picking up yards after the catch ... impressive athlete who leads his county in scoring in basketball and earned a scholarship offer from Georgia in basketball. Notes: Three-time team captain for the McNair High School football program as a wide receiver and kick returner ... all-around athlete who was a four-year letterwinner in basketball, football and baseball ... totaled 23 touchdown during his prep career and topped 500 yards receiving as a senior ... competed with the Georgia 7-on-7 All-Star Team during the summer .... coached by Roderick Moore ... an All-State performer on the basketball court. Other Schools Considered: Maryland, Georgia (basketball)
Dexter Korto LB 6-2 195 Germantown, MD (Northwest)
Coach's Comments: Rangy outside linebacker with impressive speed ... good all-around athlete who also played quarterback and wide receiver in high school. Notes: Team captain as a senior ... versatile player who played a variety of positions including quarterback, fullback, wide receiver, tight end, defensive end and outside linebacker ... totaled 54 tackles, including seven tackles for loss and four quarterback sacks as a senior ... First-Team All-Gazette for Montgomery County ... named Northwest's most valuable player as a senior ... ... coached by Randy Trivers ... ran the anchor leg of the 4X100 for the track team. Other Schools Considered: Temple, Delaware, Hofstra.
Jamel Miller RB 5-11 200 Tallmadge, OH (Tallmadge)
Coach's Comments: Explosive running back coming off back-to-back 2,000-yard rushing seasons ... possesses excellent vision and speed ... also a solid receiver out of the backfield ... the first commitment to Miami's 2006 recruiting class. Notes: Three-year letterwinner on the Tallmadge football team ... rushed for 5,165 yards and 54 touchdowns during his career, averaging an impressive 8.0 yards per carry ... rushed for 2,278 yards and 24 touchdowns as a junior and 2,128 yards and 27 touchdowns as a senior ... led the Blue Devils to a combined 25-3 record and two regional championships over his final two seasons ... two-time First-Team All-Conference and All-District honoree ... two-time Second-Team All-State pick ... selected to compete in the North-South All-Star Game .... coached by Joe Vassalotti ... also a three-year letterwinner as a sprinter on the track team. Other Schools Considered: Boston College, Michigan State, Akron.
Mark Paun DL 6-3 245 Strongsville, OH (Strongsville)
Coach's Comments: A high-motor style of athlete who runs well for an interior defensive lineman ... possesses a strong work ethic and hails from a good high school program. Notes: Three-year letterwinner as a defensive lineman and tight end at Strongsville, serving as team captain in 2005 ... helped lead the Mustangs to a three-year record of 21-11 and two Pioneer Conference Championships ... totaled 141 career tackles, including 67 solo stops, 16 tackles for loss and 13 quarterback sacks .... All-Pioneer Conference honoree ... an honorable mention All-Northeast Ohio and Cleveland Plain Dealer pick ... coached by Russ Jacques ... also lettered two years in ice hockey. Other Schools Interested: Boston College, Ohio
Donovan Potter WR 6-2 185 Trotwood, OH (Chaminade-Julienne)
Coach's Comments: Has a good wide receiver frame ... intelligent player with good hands ... athletic individual who also is a talented basketball player. Notes: Two-year letterwinner who played quarterback, wide receiver and defensive back during his prep career at Chaminade-Julienne ... totaled 80 catches for 1,120 yards and eight touchdowns as a senior ... First-Team All-Ohio pick ... also a First-Team All-State, All-District and All-Area pick .... coached by Jim Place ... a three-year letterwinner on the basketball court for the Eagles, helping them advance to the state semifinals in 2004. Other Schools Interested: Ball State, Eastern Michigan.
Sean Redwine TE 6-4 255 Reading, OH (Moeller)
Coach's Comments: Very physical blocker from the tight end position ... possesses big upside ... fits well into Miami's scheme offensively. Notes: Three-year letterwinner as a tight end at Moeller ... helped Moeller to a two-year record of 16-8, including a 10-win season as a junior ... First-Team All-City as a senior and Second-Team All-City as a junior .... coached by Bob Crable ... also lettered one season with the Moeller basketball team, helping the team advance to the state semifinals in 2005. Other Schools Considered: Akron, Ohio.
Armand Robinson WR 6-1 190 Reynoldsburg, OH (Reynoldsburg)
Coach's Comments: An extremely fast, explosive wide receiver ... physically mature athlete with surprising strength and speed ... has tremendous upside after playing just two years of high school football. Notes: Two-year letterwinner as a wide receiver and safety at Reynoldsburg High School ... totaled 36 receptions for 518 yards and six touchdowns as a senior and 42 catches for 826 yards and nine touchdowns as a junior ... two-time First-Team All-Conference and All-District pick ... Second-Team All-State as a junior ... selected to compete in Ohio's North-South All-Star game .... also totaled 95 tackles and an interception as a senior .... coached by Woody Underwood. Other Schools Considered: Wisconsin, North Carolina, Minnesota, Cincinnati.
Brandon Stephens DB 5-10 178 Strongsville, OH (Strongsville)
Coach's Comments: Physical corner back with a nice frame for the position ... runs well in coverage ... also can contribute with return skills. Notes: Four-year letterwinner who played cornerback, wide receiver, and kick returner at Strongsville ... was the football team captain as a senior ... helped the team to a 36-13 record over four seasons, winning Pioneer Conference championships in 2003 and 2004 ... was named second-team all-Pioneer Conference in 2005 ... coached by Russ Jacques ... also lettered four years in basketball and three times in track. Other Schools Considered: Iowa, Akron, Kent.
Jordan Stevens DL 6-4 245 Monroeville, PA (Gateway)
Coach's Comments: A high-motor defensive end who posseses great size for the position ... plays a physical style of football ... impact-type player who could contribute early in his Miami career. Notes: Four-year letterwinner as a defensive end and tight end at Gateway High School, serving as team captain during his senior year ... totaled 101 tackles, 11 sacks and three forced fumbles as a senior ... totaled 65 tackles and six sacks as a junior, while helping the Gators to the state championship game ... First-Team All-State pick who was ranked among the Top 40 players in Pennsylvania and as the 34th best defensive end nationally ... also a Fabulous 22 and Elite East 30 selection ... a Prep Star All-American ... ran the 100-meter dash for one season on the track team, clocking a top time of 11.7 .... coached by Terry Smith. Other Schools Interested: Minnesota, Indiana, Kentucky, Wake Forest.
Alex Stewart DL 6-2 255 Westerville, OH (St. Francis De Sales)
Coach's Comments: Good combination of size and speed as an interior defensive lineman ... posseses a frame that leaves room to grow ... also a good student ... hails from a strong high school program. Notes: A three-year letterwinner as a defensive lineman and tight end for St. Francis De Sales ... helped the Stallions to a state runner-up finish as a senior ... two-time All-Ohio pick, who earned first-team honors as a senior ... two-time first-team Ohio Central All-District selection .... coached by Bob Jacoby ... also lettered two seasons as a heavyweight on the wrestling team. Other Schools Considered: Indiana, Toledo, Akron.
D.J. Svabik DL 6-6 230 Van Wert, OH (Van Wert)
Coach's Comments: Rangy athlete ... posseses an excellent frame with room to develop ... runs well ... impressed coaching staff at Miami's senior camp. Notes: Lettered two seasons as a defensive end and tackle at Van Wert, serving as team captain during his senior season ... senior year was abbreviated by a broken foot that caused him to miss five games ... averaged 8.6 tackles and 1.0 sacks per game prior to the injury ... First-Team All-Conference as a junior ... selected to compete in the North-South All-Star Game .... coached by Jeff Hood, the brother of Miami defensive line coach Jay Hood. Other Schools Considered: Bowling Green.
Nate Williams OL 6-5 285 Parma, OH (Holy Name)
Coach's Comments: Big, athletic individual ... explosive out of the blocks and plays with a high motor ... has quick feet ... tremendous upside after playing just one season on the offensive line. Notes: Three-year letterwinner at a variety of positions on both sides of the ball for the Holy Name football program ... helped the Greenwave to an 8-2 record and conference championship as a senior ... First-Team All-Conference, All-District and All-Northeastern Ohio ... Honorable Mention All-State pick .... coached by Frank Petroff ... also a three-year letterwinner in basketball. Other Schools Considered: Boston College, West Virginia, Buffalo.