SIGNING DAY: UTSA announces outstanding recruiting class
SAN ANTONIO — UTSA head football coach Frank Wilson announced 23 highly-decorated student-athletes joining his program for the upcoming 2017 season.
"I am very proud of the class we were able to sign," Wilson said. "We feel very good about this group. We know them best as people, as students and as athletes because we've put in the time and the effort to recognize who they are.
Samuel Barnes (Richmond, Texas/George Ranch HS), B.J. Daniels (Melbourne, Fla./Palm Bay HS), Kevin Davis (Angleton, Texas/Angleton HS), Robert Fuentes (San Antonio, Texas/Southwest HS), Michael Goff (San Antonio, Texas/Johnson HS), De'Marco Guidry (La Marque, Texas/La Marque HS), Frank Harris (Schertz, Texas/Clemens HS), Jaylon Haynes (Wharton, Texas/Wharton HS), Morris Joseph Jr. (Orange, Texas/West Orange-Stark HS), Chance McLeod (Victoria, Texas/East HS), Javontavius Mosley (Tyler, Texas/John Tyler HS), Dominic Pastucci (Pflugerville, Texas/Hendrickson HS), Donovan Perkins (Zachary, La./Zachary HS), Tay'lor Perry (Crosby, Texas/Crosby HS), Keeyon Smart (Baton Rouge, La./McKinley HS/Kilgore [Texas] JC), Dadrian Taylor (Shiner, Texas/Shiner HS), Vance Vallair (Beaumont, Texas/Central HS) and Tariq Woolen (Fort Worth, Texas/Arlington Heights HS) all signed National Letters of Intent (NLIs) on Wednesday.
Josh Dunlop (Zionsville, Ind./Zionsville Community HS/Dodge City [Kan.] CC) and Robert Ursua (Bakersfield, Calif./Liberty HS/Palomar [Calif.] JC) inked NLIs in December and Bryce Rivers (San Antonio, Texas/Stevens HS) signed a financial aid agreement last November, and all three already are attending classes at UTSA this spring.
Meanwhile, Michael Moore (Escondido, Calif./Escondido HS/Palomar [Calif.] JC) and Jay Jay Smith (Gulfport, Miss./Gulfport HS/Mississippi Gulf Coast JC) inked their NLIs back in December, but the pair is not enrolled at UTSA this semester.
"When you reflect back on it, we've recruited nearly all of these young men for 12 months. This all started last January when we went out to the schools and started identifying them. It's rewarding to look back at the entire process and that's a credit to the hard work put in by our entire staff. It all comes full circle to this day and that's a testament of the things we talk about, building relationships that will stand the test of time."
Eleven members of the class are all-state performers, while 13 earned all-area, all-region, all-county or all-metro accolades and all 23 were named all-district or all-conference.
"Every opportunity," Wilson said, "whether it was last fall, last spring, summer camp, junior day, the contact period, those relationships we built allowed us to hold off some other schools that were trying to compete with us and pry our quality prospects away from us. It all goes back to being diligent in the process of doing things the right way.
"We're very fortunate to have the best recruiting class in UTSA history and one of the best, in our opinion, in our conference's recent history. We feel very confident that with this team and this group of young men coming in that we're on the right path to achieve our goal to win a conference championship.
The class features 16 players from the state of Texas, two each from California and Louisiana as well as one from the states of Florida, Indiana and Mississippi.
Of the 16 players from the Lone Star State, five each are from the Greater San Antonio and Greater Houston areas, a pair are from the Golden Triangle, while one each are from Austin, the Coastal Bend, the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex and East Texas.
Twelve of the players will suit up for the offense (2 QB, 1 RB, 2 WR, 3 TE, 4 OL), while 11 are slated to be on the defensive side of the ball (1 DL, 2 DE, 2 LB, 5 CB, 1 S).
"I just want to extend a tremendous thank you to the administrators, coaching staffs and parents of all these young men throughout this process for welcoming us with open arms," Wilson said. "On Tuesday, we picked up the phone and we called the high school coach of every young man that committed to us, and we thanked them for allowing us to come into their schools and meet with them. We told them that we would deliver on a promise that their young men would be everything that they set out to be — to graduate and have a degree; to be developed; to maximize playing potential. We always talk about the full measure of success — the degree and the championship go hand in hand, and one without the other is not good enough."
The Roadrunners will begin spring practice in March. UTSA will open its seventh season of play on Saturday, Sept. 2, at the Alamodome against Houston.
Samuel Barnes • CB
6-1 • 190 • Fr.-HS
Richmond, Texas (George Ranch HS)
High School Coach: Ricky Tullos
Possesses a strong combination of size and physicality … began prep career at wide receiver but made the move to cornerback as a senior … earned first-team All-District 23-6A accolades that season … helped lead the team to a perfect 16-0 record and the UIL Class 5A Division I Championship as a junior.
B.J. Daniels • RB
6-2 • 205 • Fr.-HS
Melbourne, Fla. (Palm Bay HS)
High School Coach: Dan Burke
Played both running back and safety at the prep level … earned honorable mention all-state and first-team all-region and all-conference as a senior … helped lead the team to a 10-1 overall record and the Class 5A District 14 Championship with a perfect 5-0 mark that season.
Kevin Davis • OL
6-3 • 290 • Fr.-HS
Angleton, Texas (Angleton HS)
High School Coach: Ryan Roark
Big, strong and athletic player who saw action at right tackle during his prep career … a two-year starter who was a first-team All-District 27-5A selection as a senior … helped lead the squad to nine victories that season … also a member of the basketball team.
Josh Dunlop • OL
6-7 • 300 • So.-TR
Zionsville, Ind. (Zionsville Community HS/Dodge City [Kan.] CC)
Junior College Coach: Gary Thomas
Currently attending classes at UTSA during the spring semester … started as a redshirt freshman this past fall at the junior college level … helped the offense average 28.4 points, 120.2 rushing yards and 168.3 passing yards per game this past season after sitting out the 2015 campaign as a redshirt … played prep ball at Zionsville (Ind.) Community High School.
Robert Fuentes • DE
6-4 • 205 • Fr.-HS
San Antonio, Texas (Southwest HS)
High School Coach: Matt Elliott
Played both defensive end and wide receiver at the prep level … earned first-team All-District 29-6A honors as a senior after helping lead the squad to eight wins … a first-team All-District 28-6A honoree as a junior after recording 76 tackles, including 10 for loss and seven sacks, and a forced fumble … also a member of the basketball team.
Michael Goff • TE
6-2 • 230 • Fr.-HS
San Antonio, Texas (Johnson HS)
High School Coach: Ron Rittiman
Three-year letterwinner and two-year starter … a first-team All-District 26-6A selection as a senior … also played in the 2017 San Antonio All-Star Game and earned honorable mention academic all-state accolades that season … named first-team all-district as a junior after leading the circuit's tight ends in catches … also was among the top 10 pass-catching tight ends in Region IV-6A.
De'Marco Guidry • LB
6-1 • 210 • Fr.-HS
La Marque, Texas (La Marque HS)
High School Coach: Mike Jackson
Played both linebacker and running back at the prep level … named to Dave Campbell Texas Football's Texas Top 300 list as a senior … earned second-team all-county honors from the Galveston Daily News and was a first-team All-District 13-3A Division I selection (both at running back) … helped lead the team to its fifth consecutive District Championship … an honorable mention all-state, second-team all-county and first-team all-district choice at linebacker as a junior after registering 88 tackles, 22 TFLs and 18 sacks … also tabbed first-team all-district at running back that season.
Frank Harris • QB
6-0 • 185 • Fr.-HS
Schertz, Texas (Clemens HS)
High School Coach: Jared Johnston
Four-year starter who was tabbed first-team All-District 27-6A as a senior … connected on 68-of-118 passes (57.6 percent) for 946 yards and 14 touchdowns in eight games of action that season … also averaged 12.1 yards per carry on his way to 892 rushing yards and another 12 scores on just 74 attempts … earned all-state accolades and was the San Antonio Express-News All-Area Offensive Player of the Year as a junior … also named the District 25-6A Offensive Player of the Year that season after completing 58.6 percent of his passes for 2,033 yards and 17 TDs … averaged 11.1 yards per rush en route to 2,741 yards and 38 more scores on 248 totes … led the team to 11 wins and the UIL Class 6A Division II quarterfinals, which was its deepest postseason run since 2006 … had four game-winning scoring plays that came in the last four minutes of a game or overtime … threw for 989 yards and 10 TDs and rushed for another 568 yards and 10 scores on 133 carries in 10 starts as a sophomore … also played basketball and helped the squad make the state playoffs.
Jaylon Haynes • DE
6-2 • 290 • Fr.-HS
Wharton, Texas (Wharton HS)
High School Coach: Tim Finn
Tabbed the District 15-4A Division II Defensive Player of the Year as a senior … earned honorable mention all-state laurels and was named the District 12-4A Division II Defensive Player of the Year following a junior campaign that saw him record 65 tackles, including eight sacks … also picked up first-team all-district accolades at offensive tackle that season … garnered second-team all-district honors as a sophomore after helping lead the club to 10 wins.
Morris Joseph Jr. • DL
6-2 • 275 • Fr.-HS
Orange, Texas (West Orange-Stark HS)
High School Coach: Cornell Thompson
Played both defensive and offensive line during his prep career and earned all-district accolades on both sides of the line of scrimmage … named to Dave Campbell Texas Football's Texas Top 300 list as a senior … tabbed the District 12-4A Division II Most Valuable Player after helping lead the team to a perfect 16-0 record and a successful defense of its UIL Class 4A Division II Championship … finished his final campaign with 156 tackles, including 26 for loss and nine sacks, en route to first-team all-area honors … leader of a defense that limited opponents to just 69 points (4.3 ppg), including eight shutouts, and 125.4 total yards a game … earned first-team All-District 9-4A Division II laurels as a junior, as the squad went 15-1 en route to the 2015 state crown.
Chance McLeod • TE
6-3 • 230 • Fr.-HS
Victoria, Texas (East HS)
High School Coach: Roland Gonzalez
Big target who runs crisp routes and possess soft hands … earned second-team all-state and first-team All-District 27-5A honors as a senior … garnered second-team all-state and first-team All-District 30-5A laurels at inside receiver after racking up 602 receiving yards and a pair of touchdowns as a junior … named a Sophomore All-American by MaxPreps, honorable mention all-state, the Area Newcomer of the Year and first-team all-district in 2014 after catching 38 passes for 577 yards and five scores … also an all-district baseball player and academic all-district honoree.
Michael Moore • CB
6-2 • 180 • Jr.-TR
Escondido, Calif. (Escondido HS/Palomar [Calif.] JC)
Junior College Coach: Joe Early
Earned second-team all-conference honors as a sophomore after recording 25 tackles, nine pass breakups, two interceptions and a forced fumble in nine games … top performance came against Orange Coast JC on Oct. 15 when he registered a season-high four stops and returned a pick 30 yards for a touchdown … that came on the heels of a freshman campaign that saw him rack up 34 stops, 13 pass breakups and five interceptions, including a 60-yard score … junior college teammate of fellow signee Robert Ursua.
Javontavius Mosley • CB
6-0 • 165 • Fr.-HS
Tyler, Texas (John Tyler HS)
High School Coach: Ricklan Holmes
Brings a strong combination of speed and size to the field … played cornerback and wide receiver at the prep level … earned first-team All-District 11-6A honors as a senior after helping the team win 11 contests … registered 60 tackles and a dozen pass breakups en route to honorable mention All-East Texas and first-team All-District 16-5A accolades as a junior … squad won 12 games en route to a berth in the UIL Class 5A Division I semifinals that season.
Dominic Pastucci • OL
6-4 • 280 • Fr.-HS
Pflugerville, Texas (Hendrickson HS)
High School Coach: Chip Killian
Combines good size with solid footwork, especially in the running game … picked up second-team All-District 13-6A accolades as a senior … helped club post nine victories as a junior … also a member of the track & field squad.
Donovan Perkins • LB
6-0 • 220 • Fr.-HS
Zachary, La. (Zachary HS)
High School Coach: David Brewerton
Earned all-metro and first-team All-District 4-5A honors as a senior after registering 103 tackles, including 12 tackles for loss and five sacks, as well as four forced fumbles as a senior … recorded 144 stops, six sacks, three forced fumbles and a pair of interceptions for the Louisiana Class 5A Champions as a junior … team posted a 14-1 record en route to the state title.
Tay'lor Perry • S
5-10 • 180 • Fr.-HS
Crosby, Texas (Crosby HS)
High School Coach: Jeff Riordan
Played both cornerback and safety at the prep level … an honorable mention all-state, second-team All-Greater Houston Area and first-team All-District 21-5A selection as a senior … earned second-team all-district accolades while helping the team post an 11-1 record as a junior … racked up 66 tackles and 10 pass breakups while helping the squad win 13 games and earn a berth in the Class 5A Division II semifinals that season.
Bryce Rivers • QB
6-2 • 205 • Fr.-HS
San Antonio, Texas (Stevens HS)
High School Coach: Darryl Hemphill
Graduated high school early and is currently attending classes at UTSA during the spring semester … earned second-team all-area and first-team All-District 28-6A Zone B honors as a senior … connected on 205-of-338 passes (60.7 percent) for 2,630 yards and 26 touchdowns and added another 147 yards and two scores on the ground that season … also played in the 2017 San Antonio All-Star Game … an honorable mention all-state and first-team All-District 27-6A Zone A selection as a junior … completed 236-of-385 throws (61.3 percent) for 3,411 yards and 30 TDs while adding another five scores on the ground in leading the team to a nine-win season … also a two-time all-district performer in baseball.
Keeyon Smart • OL
6-5 • 300 • So.-TR
Baton Rouge, La. (McKinley HS/Kilgore [Texas] JC)
Junior College Coach: J.J. Eckert
Spent the past two campaigns at Kilgore (Texas) Junior College but did not play … has three years of eligibility remaining with the Roadrunners … earned honorable-mention all-state, first-team all-metro and first-team All-District 5-5A laurels as a prep senior … earned all-district honors in all of his high school seasons … also a four-year prep letterwinner in basketball … brother, Tanzel, was a two-time All-American Athletic Conference performer at Tulane from 2013-16.
Jay Jay Smith • CB
6-2 • 195 • Jr.-TR
ulfport, Miss. (Gulfport HS/Mississippi Gulf Coast JC)
Junior College Coach: Chad Huff
Posted 24 tackles, three pass breakups and an interception in nine games during his sophomore campaign … had 18 stops in 11 games of work as a freshman, as the Bulldogs won eight games and advanced to the Mississippi Association of Community & Junior Colleges Championship Game … caught 34 passes for 449 yards (13.2 avg.) and six touchdowns and added two rushing scores and a pair of return TDs en route to second-team Mississippi High School Activities Association Class 6A all-state and first-team All-Region 4-6A accolades as a prep senior.
Dadrian Taylor • WR
5-11 • 170 • Fr.-HS
Shiner, Texas (Shiner HS)
High School Coach: Steven Cerny
Two-way standout (running back/wide receiver/safety) who was a threat to score every time he touched the ball at the prep level (also returned kickoffs and punts) … earned honorable mention all-state and first-team all-area accolades on offense as a senior … was tabbed the District 15-2A Division I Offensive Player of the Year and first-team all-district on defense in each of his final two seasons … accumulated 1,702 rushing yards and scored 32 TDs en route to first-team all-area laurels as a junior … led the team to a 13-1 record that season.
Robert Ursua • TE
6-3 • 230 • Jr.-TR
Bakersfield, Calif. (Liberty HS/Palomar [Calif.] JC)
Junior College Coach: Joe Early
Currently attending classes at UTSA during the spring semester … earned second-team all-conference laurels as a sophomore after securing 40 receptions for 463 yards (11.6 avg.) and five touchdowns in 10 games of action … top outing was a nine-catch, 92-yard effort against Golden West JC (Oct. 22) … had 30 receptions for 352 yards (11.7 avg.) and one score in seven contests as a freshman … junior college teammate of fellow signee Michael Moore … spent several years in the United States Navy after graduating high school back in 2007.
Vance Vallair • CB
6-1 • 180 • Fr.-HS
Beaumont, Texas (Central HS)
High School Coach: Toby Foreman
One of the top cornerbacks in the Golden Triangle during his prep career … played both cornerback and wide receiver … an honorable mention all-area and first-team All-District 22-5A honoree as a senior … a first-team all-district selection as a junior.
Tariq Woolen • WR
6-5 • 205 • Fr.-HS
Fort Worth, Texas (Arlington Heights HS)
High School Coach: Phil Young
Brings tremendous size to the wide receiver position … had a team-leading 31 receptions for 536 yards (17.3 avg.) and 10 touchdowns en route to first-team All-District 7-5A honors as a senior … helped lead the team to an 11-1 record as a junior … also an all-district performer in basketball who was tabbed Newcomer of the Year as a junior … member of the track & field team.