The first Wednesday in February was a lot more quiet in 2018 thanks to the new early signing period, but there was still plenty to cover. In the last two months, the Troy coaching staff closed on their three verbal commitments as well as pulling in one grad transfer from the ACC. It was another solid haul for Neal Brown as he enters his fourth season at the helm and the Trojans will be looking to be the first program to bring home a Sun Belt East division crown in 2018.
Here is your one stop shop on how the Troy recruiting class stacked up and what to expect from players who figure to contribute next season.
|Antonio Showers||Bandit||6'1"||240||Tucker, GA||Tucker||3-star|
|Levon Fletcher||CB||5'11"||170||Huntsville, AL||Randolph School||2-star|
|KJ Robertson||LB||6'1"||220||Alabaster, AL||Thompson||3-star|
|Grant Betts||OL||6'3"||270||Spanish Fort, AL||Spanish Fort||2-star|
|Jaquez Dunmore||S||6'0"||185||Tallahassee, FL||Godby||2-star|
|Gunnar Watson||QB||6'3"||205||Butler, GA||Taylor County||3-star|
|AJ Pierce||DT||6'1"||310||Dothan, AL||Northview||3-star|
|John Hines||DE||6'4"||230||Montgomery, AL||Park Crossing||2-star|
|Gerald Bell||OL||6'4"||300||Bessemer, AL||Pearl River CC||2-star|
|Jarvis Hayes||DE||6'4"||230||Slocomb, AL||Itawamba CC||2-star|
|Hamilton Hawthorne II||OL||6'2"||330||Jacksonville, FL||Sandalwood||2-star|
|Jake Andrews||OL||6'3"||330||Millbrook, AL||Stanhope Elmore||3-star|
|Kevin Perkins||RB||6'0"||230||Tunica, MS||Northwest Mississippi CC||3-star|
|Travis Sailo||DT||6'3"||280||Buhl, AL||Itawamba CC||2-star|
|Traveon Samuel||WR||5'7"||170||Phenix City, AL||Central||Grad Transfer|
|Will Sunderland||S||6'3"||201||Midwest City, OK||Midwest City||Transfer|
|AJ Lewis||TE||6'4"||228||Mobile, AL||Murphy||3-star|
|TJ Harris||S||6'1"||190||Leesburg, GA||Lee County||2-star|
|Demontrez Brown||WR||6'3"||200||Madison, AL||Bob Jones||3-star|
|Will Choloh, Jr.||DT||6'1"||280||Lawrenceville, GA||Archer|
Junior College Help
In this class, Troy added five junior college prospects and it is fair to expect each to contribute next season. Kevin Perkins was the highest rated of the group per the 247 Sports Composite and the big back is listed at 230 pounds and will be needed after the Trojans lost Josh Anderson and Jordan Chunn. Jarvis Hayes and John Hines should be able to contribute right away at defensive end as the Trojans need to replace senior Seth Calloway. While Travis Sailo could help at defensive tackle and Gerald Bell could help the interior of the offensive line. The Trojans did a good job of addressing areas of need with junior college prospects.
With Deondre Douglas and Damion Willis both returning for their senior seasons, the Trojans are set at the outside receiver spots. But since Troy lost both Tevaris McCormick and Emanuel Thompson to graduation, help was needed at inside receiver. Troy secured Alabama native Traveon Samuel who spent his first three seasons at Louisville. Samuel recorded at least 17 receptions each year in Bobby Petrino’s offense and also contributed as a kick returner. He has the potential to be an impact performer as a grad transfer in this Air Raid offense.
On the other side of the football, Oklahoma transfer Will Sunderland sat out in 2017 and should contribute right away in the secondary. Cedarius Rookard and Melvin Tyus are already a solid safety duo and adding a talent like Sunderland will give the Trojans a chance to become the best secondary in the Sun Belt this coming season.
Offensive Line Addressed
Troy gets four offensive line starters back in 2018 but with a quick look at the roster it was imperative for this position to be addressed. The staff did this by adding four players in this haul and each position is checked off. Jake Andrews may be the jewell of the class and the incoming freshman will have the size and frame to play any tackle position. Junior college transfer Gerald Bell and Hamilton Hawthorne II will add depth to the guard spots while Grant Betts projects to be a center. Offensive coordinator/offensive line coach Matt Moore will have plenty of answers as this program moves forward.