By Brian Murphy
© 2011 Idaho Statesman
Boise State announced its 2011 recruiting class — or at least has posted bios and pictures of the 19 players in the class. We had 18 of the players confirmed below, the only addition is California safety Lee Hightower.
Boise State also added three grayshirts from last year.
Here's some info on Hightower, who had committed to Penn last week:
A two-year letterwinner at Loyola High School in Los Angeles…Named second-team All-Serra League as a senior … Capped his prep campaign with 40 tackles, 18 pass break-ups two forced fumbles and an interception…Garnered Daily News All-Star recognition … Junior season recorded 50 tackles, 12 pass break-ups and four forced fumbles … Was also a four-year letterwinner in track and field, finishing as the CIF runner-up both his sophomore and junior seasons … member of the Honor Roll, was both a California Scholar and a National Merit Achievement Scholar … High school football coach was Mike Christensen.
Here is a list of the players that have told the Idaho Statesman they will sign with Boise State on Wednesday or have already enrolled in school this semester. Like everything in recruiting — especially at this time of year — the list is subject to change.
Unlike many schools, the Broncos are not providing updates when they receive letters of intent. USC is sending out text messages to fans who sign up for them. I just saw a tweet from Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly confirming that he received a letter of intent from a key member of his class. At Georgia Tech (and other places, I'm sure), there was an all-day party that fans attended — and coaches wrote the names of recruits on a board at the front of the room when recruits faxed in their LOI.
Boise State's incoming class is already quite close and confident, reports our Chadd Cripe.
2011 RECRUITING CLASS
High school seniors (17)
• QB Jimmy Laughrea, 6-2, 185, Rocklin (Calif.) HS
“I got what I wanted,” Laughrea told the Rocklin Placer Herald this week. “I wanted a scholarship to a big-time school and I got it.”
Here is our story about Laughrea, who was the first player to commit to Boise State in this class.
Laughrea has signed with Boise State, per a California TV station.
• DE Sam Ukwuachu, 6-5, 203, Pearland (Texas) HS
"He has a great work ethic. He's very quick — very fast off the edge. He plays with really good technique," Pearland High coach Tony Heath told the Statesman.
• WR Dallas Burroughs, 5-8, 165, Rocky Mountain HS (Meridian)
"It's just always been my dream school and to get to play with my brother would be really sweet," Burroughs, the brother of current Bronco wide receiver Mitch Burroughs, told the Statesman.
• DT Jeff Worthy, 6-4, 280, Whittier Christian HS (La Mirada, Calif.)
"I just had that gut feeling that this is where I belong," Worthy told the Statesman.
• DL Robert Ash, 6-3, 255, Cosumnes Oaks HS (Elk Grove, Calif.)
"We felt all along the way (coach Chris Petersen) and his staff run that program, it would be a good transition for Robert," Consumnes Oaks coach Ryan Gomes "I just had that gut feeling that this is where I belong," Worthy told the Statesman. "We preach character and integrity and I know that's at the forefront of the Boise State program."
• S Taylor Loffler, 6-3, 195, Kelowna (B.C.) Secondary
“I really liked the school, they have a really good team and I really liked the coaches,” Loffler told the Statesman. “It was a pretty easy decision.”
• OL Rees Odhiambo, 6-3, 298, Mansfield (Texas) Legacy HS
Odhiambo was a late bloomer. He did not even start playing until his sophomore year. "I was completely lost," Odhiambo told the Dallas Morning News.
From our story about Odhiambo: "He's made huge strides every year. It's amazing the amount of improvement in strength and understanding. He's an extremely hard worker. He lives in the weight room," Legacy coach Chris Melson said. "Rees is going to be all upside."
• RB Jay Ajayi, 6-0, 200, Liberty HS (Frisco, Texas)
One of the most highly regarded prospects in the class, Ajayi also earned high praise for character.
"Nothing I can say can really describe what kind of kid he is," Liberty coach Galen Zimmerman told the Statesman.
Ajayi is the "real deal," a columnist wrote in this Dallas Morning News piece.
• LB Blake Renaud, 6-2, 230, De La Salle HS (Concord, Calif.)
ESPN says Renaud has a chance to be a major force in the middle of the Boise State defense.
Renaud chose Boise State over Oregon State, Ohio and Minnesota, he told Oakland Tribune. His friend and teammate, defensive end Dylan Wynn, chose Oregon State.
"It was a really hard decision because Dylan's like my best friend," Renaud told the Tribune. "It's going to be weird not seeing him on the same team."
• OG Marcus Henry, 6-3, 275, Bellevue (Wash.) HS
But Henry remains committed to Boise State on the eve of signing day. He told the Statesman that he waited to accept Boise State's offer because he wanted to be 100 percent sure. Henry committed in August, two months after the Broncos offered him.
• CB Eric Agbaroji, 6-1, 180, Midlothian (Texas) HS
"He's good a corner as I've ever seen," Midlothian coach Lee Wiginton told the Dallas Morning News. "Effortless ... You look at him running, and you might think that he's loafing, but when you look around, there's nobody near him."
• S Corey Bell, 5-11, 200, Capital HS
"I can't explain how excited I am," Bell told told the Statesman.
Bell will be the fifth Capital player on Broncos' roster, joining tight end Kyle Efaw, defensive end Jarrell Root, wide receiver Geraldo Hiwat and tight end Kyle Sosnowski.
• DB Darian Thompson, 6-2, 172, Paraclete HS (Lancaster, Calif.)
Thompson was named All-CIF Southern Section East Valley Division Defensive MVP, the Los Angeles Times reported.
For an idea of how well-respected Thompson is at Paraclete, football coach Norm Dahlia and the Paraclete principal (who is not a football coach) drove him to Boise for the camp, the Statesman's Chadd Cripe reported.
• TE Hayden Plinke, 6-4, 230, Glencoe HS (Hillsboro, Ore.)
Plinke told the Statesman he plans to grayshirt and join the program in January 2012.
The link also includes information on a commitment from Hawaiian linebacker KT Tu’umalo. He will instead attend Colorado.
• K Jake Van Ginkel, 5-11, 185, Upland (Calif.) High
The L.A. Times wrote a feature on Van Ginkel (yes, a feature a kicker) before the season. As a junior, he helped his high school team win a state title.
The Broncos secured a commitment from Van Ginkel after Matt Goudis de-committed. Goudis was headed to Michigan and now is slated to attend Miami.
• LB Dillon Lukehart, 6-1, 200, Eagle HS
Lukehart switched his commitment from Idaho to Boise State in the middle of January after the Broncos offered him a scholarship.
“I have the utmost respect for Idaho and their coaching staff,” Lukehart told the Statesman. “I really think that’s just a class-act program. But I had to follow my heart and do what was best for me.”
• OL Adam Sheffield, 6-5, 300, Branham HS (San Jose, Calif.)
The Broncos' 2007 Fiesta Bowl victory continues to have an impact in recruiting — even though Sheffield was only 13 when that game was played.
"You watch a game like that (Fiesta Bowl) and you always kind of dream about being in those situations," Sheffield told the San Jose Mercury News. "I'm in awe that this is all happening. I'm excited to go to Boise — they've proven that they can go toe to toe with anyone."
Junior college transfers (1)
• S/LB Dextrell Simmons*, 6-0, 210, Blinn College (Spring, Texas)
Simmons, a former teammate of 2010 Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton, is already enrolled at Boise State. Simmons could play safety or nickel for the Broncos.
Grayshirts from 2010 (3)
• WR Troy Ware*, 6-2, 164, Vista (Calif.) HS
• DE Tyler Horn*, 6-4, 225, Mountain View HS (Meridian)
Horn starred at defensive end for Mountain View, where he was the 5A Southern Idaho Conference Defensive Player of the Year and an All-Idaho first-team selection in 2009.
Here is video of Horn.
• TE Holden Huff*, 6-6, 195, Rocklin (Calif.) HS
Here is video of Huff, a former high school teammate of QB Jimmy Laughrea.
Check out his official bio here.
* already enrolled
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