National Signing day is here and after a frenzied week of preparation from head coach Everett Withers’ staff the Bobcats ended up signing 26 recruits by Wednesday midday.
How did they fare? 11 three-star recruits and the #1 ranked Sun Belt Conference recruiting class by ESPN and 247 Sports. Not bad for coach Withers’ first full signing class.
A Signing Day surprise was the commitment of Kieston Roach out of North Shore High in Houston, TX. The cornerback chose State over potential offers from the likes of Tulane, Houston and Purdue. Spearheaded by Mississippi State transfer quarterback Damien Williams and a scholarship given to Grant Larza, a junior defensive lineman, the 26 signings round out a recruiting period to get bigger, faster and stronger.
And speaking of bigger, faster and stronger there was no surprise where the need for talent was. The trenches on both sides of the ball were undersized but with the new additions the Bobcats are looking to become dominant at the line of scrimmage.
2017 Texas State National Signing Day
|ATH||Jaylin Nelson||5'8"||184 Lbs.||Duncanville, TX (Duncanville)||3 Star||6/22/2016|
|ATH||Kishawn Kelley||6'2"||202 Lbs.||Corsicana, TX (Corsicana)||3 Star||6/11/2016|
|DT||Gjemar Daniels||6'4"||317 Lbs.||Kennedale, TX (Kennedale)||3 Star||1/29/2017|
|WR||TJ Bedford||6'4"||185 Lbs.||Covington, LA (St. Paul's School)||3 Star||1/22/2017|
|WR||Dhalion Phillips||6'3"||195 Lbs.||Lufkin, TX (Lufkin)||3 Star||12/3/2016|
|QB||Jaylen Gipson||6'2"||193 Lbs.||Mexia, TX (Mexia)||3 Star||10/26/2016|
|ILB||John Brannon||6'1"||228 Lbs.||Prosper, TX (Prosper)||3 Star||4/12/2016|
|DE||Jakharious Smith||6'3"||230 Lbs.||Grand Prairie, TX (South Grand Prairie)||3 Star||6/26/2016|
|S||Preston Dimery||6'1"||175 Lbs.||Kerville, TX (Tivy)||3 Star||5/23/2016|
|S||Josh Newman||6'1"||194 Lbs.||Cedar Hill, TX (Cedar Hill)||3 Star||12/9/2016|
|QB||Willie Jones III||6'4"||185 Lbs.||Silsbee, TX (Silsbee)||3 Star||11/6/2016|
|ATH||Kordell Rodgers||5'11"||175 Lbs.||Lufkin, TX (Lufkin)||3 Star||6/23/2016|
|CB||Kieston Roach||5'11"||170 Lbs.||Houston, TX (North Shore)||3 Star||2/1/2017|
|OLB||London Harris||6'1"||190 Lbs.||Manvel, TX (Manvel)||2 Star||6/14/2016|
|RB||Anthony Smith||5'11"||195 Lbs.||Keller, TX (Fossil Ridge)||2 Star||1/30/2017|
|WR||Jeremiah Haydel||5'11"||175 Lbs.||Houston, TX (Alief Taylor)||2 Star||12/16/2016|
|DT||Caeveon Patton||6'2"||260 Lbs.||Cuero, TX (Cuero)||2 Star||6/22/2016|
|OG||Caleb Carlile||6'5"||300 Lbs.||Waxahachie, TX (Waxahachie)||2 Star||6/23/2016|
|C||Reece Jordan||6'3"||260 Lbs.||Boyd, TX (Boyd)||2 Star||6/25/2016|
|OT||Nic Foster||6'5"||300 Lbs.||Arlington, TX (Arlington)||2 Star||6/22/2016|
|DT||Sami Awad||6'1"||250 Lbs.||Athens, TX (Trinity Valley C.C.)||2 Star||11/29/2016|
|OT||Anthony Mayes||6'5"||310 Lbs.||Scranton, PA (Lackawanna C.C.)||2 Star||1/22/2017|
|CB||Caleb Twyford||6'0"||175 Lbs.||Farmersville, TX (Farmersville)||2 Star||9/24/2016|
|DE||Khristopher Wilkins||6'2"||248 Lbs.||Manvel, TX (Manvel)||2 Star||1/30/2017|
|OT||Tanner King||6'6"||260 Lbs.||Deer Park, TX (Deer Park)||2 Star||1/31/2017|
The Bobcats focused mainly on players who not only had the physical skills but the second nature of winning and competing. Kieston Roach played on a state champion in North Shore High, linebacker John Brannon was a 14-5A MVP and all-state player and Gjemar Daniels out of Kennedale High School was a monster on the defensive line with 20.0 TFL and three sacks in his senior year.
Referring to what his staff was looking for coach Withers stated, “Guys who know how to fight, scratch and go win games, that’s really important for us and that’s one of the things we go look at.”
Withers also stated that now that the players are signed and on board the developmental phase starts with the young men and it’s the most important phase of the program.
Despite the high ranking in recruiting the team did miss out on some players such as three-star offensive lineman Tyler Casteneda who signed with Ellsworth Community College and another offensive lineman Brian Parish who decommited from Texas State in favor of North Texas a week ago.
Overall the team recruited 14 offensive players and 11 defensive players with the majority of the signers being offensive lineman (5). 22 players are from the state of Texas, two are from Louisiana, and one comes to San Marcos from Washington D.C.
The team is now even younger but is getting the players they need to deepen the roster. A transfer at quarterback and talented defensive players may answer many questions the ‘Cats have for the 2017 season but improvement is a must. I give the class a B. I’m excited for TJ Bedford and Gjemar Daniels as new additions and I’ll be presenting an article on how I think the new commitments to Texas State will fit on next year’s team in the near future.