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College football: Signing Day Central

Published February 6, 2013 3:29 pm

Football recruiting • Continuous signing day updates right here throughout the day
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

National football signing day is here.

Whether you're tracking your local high school's recruits, or signing classes for Utah, Brigham Young, Utah State, Weber State or Southern Utah, we will have continuous updates here all day.

Signing day lists, by school, below. Newest updates at the top:

Utah State University

Some Utah State fans were worried that Gary Andersen might swipe some of their talent over at Wisconsin.

The school they should've feared? Oklahoma State.

Three of the Aggies' top recruits — running back Rennie Childs, lineman Ofa Hautau and lineman Vili Leveni — eventually were claimed by the Cowboys. All of them committed in the last few weeks, with Hautau and Leveni choosing Oklahoma State in the past few days.

Matt and Luke Wells are Oklahoma natives, and Luke Wells was a Sooner. So the Cowboys never have been too popular anyway for the family.

— Kyle Goon

Southern Utah University

Jordan High School defensive lineman Zach Larsen tops the list of seven in-state football players who have signed Wednesday to play at Southern Utah.

Larsen was a Salt Lake Tribune 5-A first-team all-state selection as a senior with the Beetdiggers.

Among Southern Utah's other early signees is Ty Rutledge of Desert Hills High in St. George. Recruited by the Thunderbirds as an athlete, he was a Tribune Class 3A first-team all-state selection as a quarterback.

The group of SUU recruits also includes offensive lineman Josh Anderson (Desert Hills), linebacker Pat Baker (South Sevier), defensive lineman Wesley Kauvaka (Pine View), linebacker Mafua Vailolo (woods Cross)and defensive lineman Mason Woodward (Syracuse).

— Steve Luhm

Brigham Young University

BYU had not one, but two surprise signings on Wednesday from the junior college ranks.

Shortly after announcing it had signed Tim Duran of Cabrillo College in California, BYU said it received a national letter of intent from Edward Fusi, an offensive lineman from Mount San Antonio Community College.

Fusi, 6-1, 285, is from Corona, Calif. He was first-team all-conference in the North Central Conference, and helped Mt. Sac to an 11-1 season. He also drew interest from Alabama, Mississippi, Oregon State and UCLA, according to his bio.

He became the 12th offensive or defensive lineman to sign with BYU on Wednesday.

Utah State University

As noon approaches, the Aggies have gotten another bunch of signees. Two have been linked with the program for a while, but another is a new face to Utah State who could be a dramatic boost to the pass rush.

Keylon Hollis, a linebacker out of Bakersfield, has signed with the Aggies after committing over the weekend. An who picked up 16.5 sacks last year at the California community college, he was named his conference's defensive player of the year. He went to high school with USU star QB Chuckie Keeton, which helped make him feel comfortable in Logan.

Rivals listed Arizona and Arizona State as a few of the programs who were interested in Hollis.

Two more signees Utah State added this morning are already there. Andrew Chen, a lineman out of California, signed last year but is just now eligible and is already attending school at Utah State. Similarly, Ricky Ali'ifua is back from a mission after originally signing in 2009. How much has changed since then.

Utah State University

Signing was fast and furious this morning, but now has cooled down for Utah State. Only a few recruits remain unsigned, and the Aggies already have 19 LOIs.

Among the ones that have come in this morning not previously mentioned are a pair of linemen who could still be growing into themselves: Bingham's Joe Malanga and Pine View's Cody Boyer will likely have some time to add weight to their tall frames while adding depth along the line.

At wideout, Utah State signed another JuCo prospect in Ryan Watson, who was getting interest from WAC and Mountain West programs among others. He should compete for a starting role among the graduation-depleted receiving corps.

In the secondary, Utah State hopes Zach Swenson could pay off as a sleeper. He'll go on an LDS Church mission first, but as a defensive back he was a leader and heady player for the East Leopards the last two seasons.

Brigham Young University

Because BYU usually has its recruiting wrapped up earlier than most schools, there are few Signing Day surprises in Provo. But there has been a surprise signing today.

Tim Duran, an offensive lineman from California's Cabrillo College, has signed with BYU. Duran visited BYU last week, but did not receive a scholarship offer. Obviously, he got one since then, presumably the one given to Quincy Awa-Dubose.

Dubose's offer was withdrawn recently.

As for Duran, he's a 6-foot-4, 290-pound road grader from Puyallup, Wash., who can play either tackle or guard. He was a team captain at Cabrillo in 2012 and member of the national honor society and dean's list.

University of Utah

Every football coach will tell you they don't care about recruiting services' ratings, they care about filling their needs. This class for the Utes should show us just how good Utah's coaches are at meeting their needs.

Utah had some glaring deficits on both the offensive and defensive lines and had some big holes to fill in the secondary and at running back. The Utes loaded up in those areas. While many of the recruits lacked so-called "star power," Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said last week he felt many of the players were under-rated. Given Utah's immediate need for linemen and DBs, we're going to see just how many of these guys are good enough to make an immediate difference.

Look for safety Tevin Carter, defensive tackle Sese Ianu and receiver Andre Lewis to be among those who are asked to contribute right away.

By far the most intriguing signee is Micah Thomas, a quarterback out of Houston, Texas. He was recruited by Utah as an athlete, but could earn a chance to show what he can do as a quarterback as well.

Utah State University

Several Utah State fans were disappointed by Damion Hobbs' late pledge switch to Oregon, but the only quarterback the Aggies are expected to sign today is happy and ready to come up to Logan.

And he's no slouch either.

Darell Garretson, a 6-foot QB out of Chandler High in Arizona, threw for 3,065 yards and 27 touchdowns last year. The Utah State staff considers him a dual threat guy, and he could someday be the passer who takes over Chuckie Keeton's spot.

Garretson spent his Signing Day at a National Football Foundation event, signing at a podium. He said it was the culmination of a long-time dream, but he's more antsy for the next chapter.

"Now I can finally get up there at Utah State, and start getting ready to go," he said. "I know a bunch of the guys in the class, and it seems like we're bringing in a great group of guys. I'm excited for the future."

Garretson's grandfather and uncles were NBA referees, so sports runs in the family. He said his family is just as excited as he is for him to take the next step to Division I college ball.

University of Utah

The Utes are down to just a few players remaining to sign, with X'avier Shepherd, a receiver out of Lakewood, Calif., being the most notable.

Also, not showing up on the boards yet but enrolled is Brandon Cox, the quarterback out of Pasadena, Calif.

One commit, Leroy Sitake Tanoai, isn't expected to sign with this class since plans are he'll attend a mission before enrolling.

Utah State University

There are some high schools where these's just something in the water. Consider Logan High one of those football programs that's reaped the benefits.

Letters of intent have now come in for three Logan High stars: Kicker Jake Thompson, and defensive linemen Caden Andersen (no relation to Gary Andersen) and Jacoby Wildman.

Two of those Grizzlies are recovering from injuries this past year — Thompson and Andersen. But Thompson is hopeful to make a recovery after becoming one of the state's most prolific kickers as a junior. Andersen and Wildman are likely to go on missions, so they'll be

Hagen Andersen, who is Gary Andersen's son, will likely be a preferred walk-on for the Aggies, as well.

Utah State has consistently harvested talent from down the street: Five guys already on the roster are from Logan High.

Brigham Young University

BYU has done a pretty good job landing the sons of former Cougar football standouts lately, but the son of a prominent former Cougar is heading elsewhere to play his college football.

Torry McTyer, son of former BYU defensive back Tim McTyer, signed with UNLV today. BYU looked at Torry McTyer in the weeks before signing day, but apparently did not offer him a scholarship.

Torry McTyer, out of Cathedral High in Los Angeles, originally committed to Cal. But the Golden Bears withdrew the offer last month and McTyer's recruiting process started anew.

University of Utah

The Utes are down to just a few players remaining to sign, with X'avier Shepherd, a receiver out of Lakewood, Calif., being the most notable.

Also, not showing up on the boards yet but enrolled is Brandon Cox, the quarterback out of Pasadena, Calif.

One commit, Leroy Sitake Tanoai, isn't expected to sign with this class since plans are he'll attend a mission before enrolling.

Weber State University

In need of a quarterback to replace departed senior Mike Hoke, Weber State brought in a record-breaking junior college performer Alfonso Medina from Santa Monica College. Medina, a junior from Venice, Calif., passed for 2,640 yards and 30 touchdowns in 2012.

Medina, one of two quarterbacks to sign with Weber State on Wednesday, set a school record with 51 career touchdowns. Also signing with WSU is freshman Austin Chipoletti, a 5-foot-11 quarterback from Jacksonville, Fla.

Weber State addressed needs on both sides of the football, bringing in five defensive players, including junior college safety D.J. Bush, and five on offense. Foothill College (Los Altos Hills, Calif.) coach Kelly Edwards called Bush the quarterback of the defense.

The freshmen offensive signings involved two receivers, one running back and an offensive tackle. Two defensive linemen were among the defensive freshmen additions. WSU also brought in a linebacker and a cornerback.

— Martin Renzhofer

University of Utah

The Utes have cut some players loose recently to meet signing requirements, but one that got away they wanted to stay was Vili Leveni, a defensive end out of Hurst, Texas who signed with Oklahoma State. He switched to Oklahoma State reportedly more out of differences with some other Texans who signed with the Utes than being unhappy with Utah's program.

Brigham Young University

BYU is expected to sign nearly a dozen high school football players from the state of Utah today, when all is said and done.

Several of those Utah prep stars got their paperwork in early on Wednesday morning, including Fremont defensive back Jordan Preator, Skyline defensive back Garrett England, Lone Peak wide receiver Talon Shumway and Bountiful linebacker Rylee Gautavai.

Preator, 6-0, 180, flew under the recruiting radar a bit because he was injured his senior year. He played some quarterback for the Silver Wolves of Plain City, and also played a little basketball.

England also did it all at Skyline, playing receiver, running back and defensive back. The 6-foot-4, 190-pound athlete was a first-team all-state pick.

Shumway is also on the taller side, at 6-3. The 200-pounder from Highland is rated as the No. 9 overall prospect in the state by Rivals.com. He caught 72 passes for 1,049 yards and 16 touchdowns as a senior. He also plays basketball for Lone Peak's nationally ranked hoops team.

Gautavai, 6-1, 200, led the Braves of Bountiful with 117 tackles and 4.5 sacks in 2012. He had 122 tackles as a junior. Bountiful won 25 games in Gautavai's three-year tenure at the school.

University of Utah

It isn't even 10 a.m. and the Utes are almost done with their recruiting class with 18 players signed or enrolled.

The running back group already looks solid, with Troy McCormick, a 5-9, 159-pound back out of Houston, Texas and Devontae Booker, a 5-11, 199-pound back out of Sacramento, Calif. among the signees.

Also signing is De'Vian Young, a 5-9, 171-pound freshman out of Houston, Texas.

Speaking of Texas, the Utes have made the state a priority area in recent seasons. It seems to be paying off, at least in numbers, with seven players from Texas signing so far.

In a change from past signing rules, players who have committed to the Utes but won't enroll during the 2013-14 aren't allowed to sign national letters of intent and the maximum number of signees permitted through the signing period (Dec. 1-May 31) is 25 this year, down from 28 a year ago, so expect the announcements that several of Utah's committed players will be heading out on missions or will walk on.

Utah State University

Utah State may have found a future star in an in-state recruit who didn't set a high profile despite having an spectacular season.

Timpview wideout Dax Raymond, who tied a state record this year for receiving touchdowns, has signed with the Aggies. At 6-foot-5, he has sticky hands and great speed with a bit of room to grow. He's likely to go on his LDS Church mission first, then come back, perhaps as a tight end.

He was a recent grab, only committing on Wednesday. He totaled 1,458 yards and 23 touchdowns as the Thunderbirds won a 4A title this year.

That goes along with the other talent Utah State has now signed at its receiving positions. Wyatt Houston, a quarterback-turned-tight end out of Oregon, has officially signed after being one of the first commits to the program for the 2013 class.

Hayden Weichers joins on as one of the big wins for the Utah State coaching staff. The Bingham senior switched his allegiance from BYU to the Aggies in November, then stayed with the program after Gary Andersen left. The 6-foot receiver could be someone Utah State puts in the slot position as soon as this fall.

Utah State also received word that Tyler Fox, a local prospect who is a terrific athlete. He was one of the state's best playmakers this year at Layton, and has been committed for some time.

Brigham Young University

It appears that BYU will land just one four-star football recruit this year, but Brayden Kearsley of Beaverton, Ore., very well could start this fall on the Cougars' offensive line.

Kearsley, a 6-foot-5, 298-pound center at Aloha High, signed with BYU on Wednesday after committing to the Cougars early, then taking some other trips to Pac-12 schools such as Washington and Oregon State.

When Kearsley was wavering, new BYU offensive coordinator Robert Anae paid him a home visit along with BYU linebackers coach Kelly Poppinga and convinced him to stay true to his commitment.

Kearsley is a three-year starter at Aloha. He posted triple-digit pancake blocks and allowed no sacks in three years. He is rated as the No. 3 prospect from the state of Oregon.

The Cougars also received letters of intent mid-morning from two other big boys: Addison Pulsipher of Temecula, Calif., and Merrill Taliauli of East High in Salt Lake City.

Pulsipher, 6-6, 260, is a first-team All-Southwestern Conference offensive lineman and a second-team All-Southwestern Conference defensive lineman. His brother, Adam, signed with BYU in 2011 and is currently on a church mission.

Taliauli is rated as the No. 40 defensive tackle in the country and the No. 10 overall prospect in the state of Utah. The 6-foot-2, 305-pound lineman is a Salt Lake Tribune first-team all-stater.

University of Utah

Utah's signing day has started with a bang with Houston, Texas quarterback Micah Thomas being one of the first to sign with the Utes. The 6-foot, 178-pound Thomas was also considering Air Force, where he was being recruited as a quarterback.

He will get a shot on offense or defense with the Utes.

Quarterback has been a problematic area for the Utes when it comes to depth in recent years, but it seems they took care of that issue with this class with the signing of Thomas and also pro-style quarterback Conner Manning out of Lake Forest, Calif.

Already enrolled is Brandon Cox, an athletic quarterback out of Pasadena, Calif.

Also signing early Wednesday was the Euless, Texas trio of Sam Tevi, Salesi Uhatafe and Keio Vaenuku, three players who will help Utah's depth along the lines.

The running back group already looks solid, with Troy McCormick, a 5-9, 159-pound back out of Houston, Texas and Devontae Booker, a 5-11, 199-pound back out of Sacramento, Calif. among the signees.

Utah State University

Two big-bodied running backs have signed with Utah State, making the competition at that position next year a little more intriguing.

Contra Costa back Rashad Hall and California High School runner Karris Johnson give the Aggies some size at a position where the team has truly stood out in the last few years. In the tradition of Robert Turbin and Kerwynn Williams, Utah State will look for a big playmaker to emerge in this signing class, and either one could be the answer.

Of the two, Hall might be the first one to make a splash on the depth chart. He's coming off a big season, rushing for just over 1,400 yards. At 6-foot-1, he's also capable of being a blazer when he gets through the line.

The 6-foot Johnson had a prolific career at California High, running for 1,300 yards and 20 touchdowns. He could be more of a long-term prospect since he's new to the college level. He's notable for being the first commit of the Matt Wells era.

Brigham Young University

Several recruits who will sign with BYU today played at junior colleges last season and have already been on LDS Church missions. One such signee is Sam Lee, a defensive back at College of the Canyons (where new BYU OL coach Garett Tujague was the head coach).

Lee, a 6-foot, 180-pound cornerback from Brandywine, Md., served his mission in Atlanta, Ga.

Lee made 22 tackles and had one interception (which he returned 67 yards for a touchdown) for the Cougars of CoC last fall.

Brigham Young University

After a standout high school football career at Mountain View High in Mesa, Ariz., towering lineman Josh Carter sort of fell through the cracks because he went on an LDS Church mission to Salt Lake City.

He played at Eastern Arizona College this past season, helping the Gila Monsters average 323.6 rushing yards per game, and 31 points per game.

Carter, a 6-5, 290-pound athlete, signed Wednesday with BYU. He was also drawing interest from Arizona, Boise State, Utah, UCLA, Washington and others.

Carter is the latest star from Mountain View to join BYU's football team; Former Cougar quarterbacks Max Hall and John Beck also played at the Mesa powerhouse.

Utah State University

All Utah schools have recently struck it rich in the junior college pool, and the Aggies are hoping this year is no different.

Utah State has signed defensive back Jeremy Morris and receiver Ronald Butler, both impact prospect who are expected to compete immediately at some of Utah State's most open positions.

Morris of Mesa College in Arizona has been a commit since before Gary Andersen left. He had 41 tackles and four interceptions as a ballhawking patroller in the secondary.

Ronald Butler committed in the last two weeks, coming from Contra Costa College. He had 55 catches for 870 yards and 13 touchdowns last season as a sophomore.

"A lot of guy I met went to junior college, and they know what it's like, they knew what I was talking about," Butler said at the time of his commitment. "Excited is not even the word - I can't wait to get up there."

Brigham Young University

BYU's first two signees on National Signing Day are already enrolled in school and will be with the Cougars when spring camp begins in March.

The signees are quarterback Billy Green, who just graduated from Seattle's King's High School, and Trenton Trammell, a defensive back from the City College of San Francisco.

Green is a two-time first team All-State quarterback and the Cascade Conference Offensive Most Valuable Player in 2012.

He completed 196 of 304 passes for 2,997 yards and 46 touchdowns last season.

Trammell reportedly runs the 40-yard dash in 4.5 seconds. He helped the Rams go 22-2 in his two years, and made 57 tackles and five interceptions last season to help his team finish atop the NorCal Conference standings.

It was somehow fitting that the first two signees listed by BYU (not including mid-year transfers) are a pair of offensive linemen, because the Cougars clearly made rebuilding their offensive line an offseason priority.

Keegan Hicks, a 6-foot-3, 285-pound lineman from Bingham High and Thomas Shoaf, a 6-6, 265-pounder from Columbus, Ind., got their letters of intent in at the crack of dawn.

Hicks is the No. 30 center in the country, according to Scout.com. He helped the Miners go 10-3 as a senior and 9-3 as a junior.

Shoaf is rated as the No. 65 offensive tackle in the nation by Rivals.com and 15th best prospect in the state of Indiana. He was a first-team all-state pick in 2012.

Although offensive lineman Lloyd Tunstill never visited BYU during the recruiting process, the Cougars were holding out some hope as Signing Day dawned on Wednesday that the junior college star would sign with them because Tunstill's coach at College of the Canyons, Garett Tujague, has joined BYU's staff.

However, Tunstill ended the drama early on Wednesday, tweeting out that he will sign with TCU. Tuesday, Tunstill posted a picture of three baseball caps representing TCU, BYU and Baylor and noted he was still deciding between the three schools.

"All other schools were great, but my heart is in Fort Worth," Tunstill tweeted. "It is Official for 2013 I WILL BE PLAYING FOR TEXAS CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY."

Tunstill is a 6-foot-3, 330-pound offensive guard with exceptional speed and athleticism for a man his size.

BYU lost a recruit to Utah State last fall when Bingham High receiver Hayden Weichers opted to take USU's offer of an immediate scholarship, rather than get one from BYU when he returns from a church mission.

However, the Cougars turned the tables on the Aggies in January, getting a commitment from Logan High linebacker Chase Andersen, who had committed to Utah State.

Andersen was among the first recruits to send his National Letter of Intent in to BYU Wednesday morning.

Of course, he's the son of former Utah State and current Wisconsin head coach Gary Andersen.

Chase Andersen missed the entire 2012 season with a knee injury. As a junior, he was a 4A all-stater and the All-Valley MVP and All-Region MVP, according to the Logan Herald-Journal.

University of Utah

Utah's signing day has started with a bang with Houston, Texas quarterback Micah Thomas being one of the first to sign with the Utes. The 6-foot, 178-pound Thomas was also considering Air Force, where he was being recruited as a quarterback.

He will get a shot on offense or defense with the Utes.

Also signing early Wednesday was the Euless, Texas trio of Sam Tevi, Salesi Uhatafe and Keio Vaenuku.

Southern Utah University

Nothing is official yet, but Rivals.com is reporting that Southern Utah will sign a possible replacement for record-setting quarterback Brad Sorensen on Wednesday.

According to the website, Aaron Cantu committed to the Thunderbirds in December. He is a 6-foot-3, 210-pound pro-style quarterback from East Los Angeles College who is rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.

Utah State University

New Utah State football coach Matt Wells got his first two letters of intent from recruits who drew serious consideration from the Pac-12.

Tyshon Mosley, a 6-foot-5, 305-pound lineman is the recruit from Jordan High School. A mountainous blocker and athlete, Mosley committed early and stayed true to the Aggies. Mosley saw some late involvement from Washington, and has the look of a possible early impact prospect for Utah State. He was a key component of a Beetdigger line that helped rush for 3,600 yards.

Myron Turner was a different situation, cut loose by Washington State in the recruiting process. Utah State pounced on the safety from DeSoto High in Texas, hopeful that he can become a playmaker for the Aggies.

Said Turner after his visit to Logan: "It seems like it's just a big family, everybody's comfortable out here."