Head coach Frank Wilson stepped into a precarious situation at UTSA as the self-identifying recruiting wizard was granted just three weeks to fill out the Roadrunners' recruiting class before national signing day 2016. While the situation is far from ideal, Wilson and his staff have done an impressive job filling out the remaining scholarships with size and strength. Let's take a look at who all the Roadrunners have committed at this point in time.
Mostly recruited under Larry Coker's staff, the 2016 class is JUCO-heavy. Tanner Myers leads the way as the 6'7", 310 Coffeyville Community College product will likely start at either left or right tackle for UTSA next season. Offensive guard Stefan Beard will join him to give UTSA's their most depth along the offensive line in school history. UTSA will also be receiving JUCO help at tight end from Ventura College's Austin Blake-Smith. At 6'5", Smith should be an interesting weapon for the offense.
The defense will also receive an infusion of talent as linebackers Leslie Maruo and Anthony Hickey will seek to earn starting spots at linebacker where UTSA returns very little experience. All of the JUCO athletes listed above have already enrolled in classes at UTSA and will be participating in spring practices.
The mid-year transfers were also joined by two early enrollees. Brenndan Johnson, originally from Waco, TX, joins the Roadrunners from the Naval Prep Academy. The 5'11" cornerback will have five years to play four seasons just like any high school recruit. Jesse Ebozue (6'2", 193) was able to graduate from Arlington Bowie high school in December to join the Roadrunners for spring ball. While the athletic wideout didn't put up large numbers in high school, his performance in summer camps led to offers from Arkansas State, Louisiana Tech, SFA, and Texas State.
While UTSA doesn't have many commitments on the offensive side of the ball, Frank Wilson is loading up on defense.
UTSA is extremely thin at the defensive end position but Wilson will be signing two great football players in this class to help ease the pain. Jarrod McLin of Carthage, TX (6'3", 220) was one of the first athletes to commit to UTSA in the 2016 class and he stuck to his commitment throughout the coaching change. Solomon Wise (6'5", 225) will be joining him at defensive end in what was an important recruiting win for Frank Wilson. The Coppell, TX native chose UTSA over offers from Kansas, SMU, and UNT. Franklin Uesi, a run-stopping defensive tackle, will help solidify UTSA's defensive line as the Roadrunners' last JUCO recruit of the 2016 cycle.
Eric Banks, a 6'5", 215 pound athlete from Memphis, is probably the most intriguing recruit UTSA is expected to sign this year. Bank played quarterback for his high school but also shows impressive snaps at outside linebacker and defensive end on his film. I'm guessing that Banks starts his career at outside linebacker where he could see early playing time but I wouldn't be surprised to see him grow into a defensive end down the line.
Banks' teammate Teddrick McGhee represents another big recruiting win for Wilson's staff as the physical cornerback had 13 scholarship offers, including offers from CUSA members Middle Tennessee State and Western Kentucky. Carrington Kearney, a 5'11" quarterback from Pflugerville, Texas will likely be joining McGhee in the secondary. Kearney was recruited to UTSA as a cornerback by the previous staff.
While this recruiting class is definitely defensive-focused, UTSA has two more recruits joining the roster on the offensive side of the ball. Jack Giblin (6'3", 210) of Port Neches, TX is a tight end that will likely line up in the slot for most of his college snaps unless he gains a bunch of weight at the next level.
Offensive tackle Josh Oatis is the last known Roadrunner commitment as of now. While Oatis needs to fill out in weight, he has the quick feet and long arms needed to excel on the edge. At 6'5", 280, Oatis has a frame unlike any other previous UTSA recruit. I think Oatis can grow to be a staple on the Roadrunner offensive line for several years.
It's hard to tell how many scholarships UTSA has left to dole out but it's safe to assume that the Roadrunners can bring on at least two more athletes.
Sources out of Hattiesburg are still reporting both athletes as having solid commitments to Southern Miss but UTSA remains hot on the trails of JUCO WR Marquez McNair and high school defensive end Jacques Turner.
Three star defensive tackle Michael Perry visited UTSA last weekend and is reportedly high on the Roadrunners. Geraud Sanders, a three-star wide receiver from Dallas also visited UTSA last weekend and is reportedly mulling over his options. Sanders has offers from Louisiana Tech, Northwestern, Navy, USM, and Rice, to name a few.
UTSA will likely have a wild national signing day as Frank Wilson and his staff scramble to close strong on what was looking to be a wasted recruiting class just a few weeks ago. Be sure to check back for additional updates throughout the week.