FORT COLLINS – Colorado State will not be listed among the nation’s elite recruiting classes announced Wednesday.
However, coach Jim McElwain hopes the 24-member class will get its proper accreditation in time. The Rams signed 24 players in McElwain’s second class since leaving his position as Alabama’s offensive coordinator.
“I will not anoint anybody in this class as the next great superstar,” McElwain said of the class. “That’s something they have to prove, but each and every one of them we expect them to be ‘impact’ some time in their career.”
McElwain, who ended a string of three consecutive 3-9 seasons with a four-win season in 2012, said this class filled some needs, as evidenced by the signing of five defensive linemen and four wide receivers.
A year ago, the Rams were razor-thin along the defensive front. McElwain will bring in LaRyan King and Terry Jackson from the junior-college ranks along with incoming freshmen Austin Berk, Josh Lovingood and Adrian Johnson.
Quality of individual is another characteristic of the class, McElwain said. In that department, look no further than offensive linemen Zack Golditch, who played a huge role in high school after being shot in the neck during last year’s mass shooting in an Aurora theater.
“And look at what he did to elevate that program after that horrific event,” McElwain said.
“I think we answered our needs in our receiving corps. We needed to because we lost a lot of good receivers from this last year and needed to replenish that area,” McElwain said. “I think you can see from a size standpoint what we were trying to accomplish at those spots.”
The receiving recruits – Rashad Higgins, Sammie Long, Elroy Masters and Xavier Williams – are dynamic playmakers who have proven themselves in high school. Sometime in their careers, they’ll catch passes from quarterback Nick Stevens, a 6-3, 190-pounder from Murrieta, Calif. – a capable runner and passer.
“Stevens was 27-1 as a starter at a high level of football in California,” McElwain said. “He did a lot to make his program successful.”
As did the whole class. Four of the signees won a total of six state championships.
The Rams will complete spring camp with a spring game April 20.