Northern Arizona signs 11 in-state players among class of 21
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. -- Northern Arizona stayed close to home in fortifying its football roster on National Signing Day, signing 11 players from Arizona among its class of 21 recruits.
"We feel like we're on the verge of something special at NAU," Northern Arizona head coach Jerome Souers said. "This class is clearly a unique group with a lot of talented kids that will immediately make us a better football team. It just proves again how hard our staff works to recruit these student-athletes, but it also speaks to the direction of our program. When you put recruiting classes together like we've done the last few seasons it creates an exciting foundation and future for this program. A lot of these kids have turned down multiple offers to FBS and FCS schools to join the Lumberjack Family. These kids can see the direction that we're headed and it's a special time."
The 11 in-state products include a pair of Division II players of the year from Tucson, safety Derik Hall of Sahuaro High School and linebacker Taylor Powell from Salpointe Catholic. The other in-state addionts are athlete Kamron Johnson (Saguaro), linebacker Larry McCord (Arizona Western), linebacker Billy McEowen (Mountain Ridge), offensive lineman Jamison Pruitt (Sandra Day O'Connor), cornerback Trey Robinson (Hamilton), linebaker Tristen Vance (Hamilton), fullback Abe Thompson (Cibola), safety LeAndre Vaughn (Glendale CC, Agua Fria) and wide receiver Kendyl Taylor, a University of Washington transfer from Hamilton High School.
"We still believe that we outwork other programs in the state of Arizona and that is our first goal every year," Souers said. "We want to keep the Arizona talent in Arizona, and we've done that again with some really talented players. Our goal will continue to have at least 50 percent of our roster consist of Arizona kids. At the end of the day we want an Arizona All-Star team. We want the state of Arizona to be Lumberjack fans, to pack the Walkup Skydome and be a part of this team. We don't want these kids going anywhere else, we want them coming up to Flagstaff and knowing that the top Arizona prospects always have a home at NAU."
The class also includes five players from California: tight end Jonathan Baldwin (Paso Robles), cornerback Maurice Davison (Anaheim), defensive lineman Kourey Gabriel (Fullerton College), offensive lineman Jaylon Kuykendall (Lemon Grove) and quarterback Cole Norris (Newport Beach).
The remainder of the class includes three players from Texas and one each from Utah and Nevada.
The class includes four linebackers, three offensive linemen, three cornerbacks, three safeties, two defensive linemen, one quarterback, one wide receiver, one fullback, one tight end, one long snapper and one athlete.
|Class of 2015||Pos.||Yr.||Hometown/School|
|Jonathan Baldwin||TE||Fr.||Paso Robles, Calif.|
|Maurice Davison||CB||Fr.||Anaheim, Calif. (Servite)|
|Kourey Gabriel||DL||Jr.||Los Angeles (Fullerton JC)|
|Harrison Goebel||LS/TE||Fr.||Santa Clara, Utah (Pine View)|
|Jalen Goss||DL||Fr.||Lancaster, Texas (South Oak Cliff)|
|Derik Hall||LB||Fr.||Tucson (Sahuaro)|
|Kamron Johnson||ATH||Fr.||Scottsdale (Saguaro)|
|Jaylon Kuykendall||OL||Fr.||Lemon Grove, Calif. (Helix)|
|Larry McCord||LB||Jr.||Griffin, Ga. (Arizona Western)|
|Billy McEowen||LB||Fr.||Glendale (Mountain Ridge)|
|Cole Norris||QB||Fr.||Newport Beach, Calif. (Newport Harbor)|
|Malik Noshi||OL||Fr.||Las Vegas, Nev. (Arbor View)|
|Ryan Phillippe||S||Fr.||Euless, Texas (Colleyville Heritage)|
|Taylor Powell||LB||Fr.||Tucson (Salpointe Catholic)|
|Jamison Pruitt||OL||Fr.||Glendale (Sandra Day O'Connor)|
|Trey Robinson||CB||Fr.||Chandler (Hamilton)|
|Willie Smith||CB||Fr.||Dallas (South Oak Cliff)|
|Kendyl Taylor||WR||Jr.||Chandler (University of Washington)|
|Abe Thompson||FB||Fr.||Yuma (Cibola)|
|LeAndre Vaughn||S||Jr.||Avondale (Glendale CC)|
|Tristen Vance||LB||Fr.||Chandler (Hamilton)|