Valdosta - A total of 33 football players committed to play for Valdosta State as the Blazers announced their 2014 signing class Wednesday.
The group of new Blazers is evenly distributed among offense and defense as VSU signed 15 offensive players, 13 defensive players and five athletes who will have the opportunity to aid Valdosta State on either side of the ball. The group of 32 includes five junior college and one Division I transfer.
Wide receiver received the most attention of the Blazer coaches on the day as VSU inked eight wide outs, while Head Coach David Dean and his staff also focused on both the offensive and defensive lines as they signed five on the offensive side of the ball and six on defense.
"I think we really helped ourselves on the offensive and defensive lines," said Dean in making the announcement. "We filled needs at every position off on both lines. On defense, we were able to sign a couple of guys that provide some strength and size up the middle while also adding some great rushers off the ends.
"We made finding some offensive lineman a priority. We were really hurt by injuries last season and our depth just wasn't there, plus we lose seven offensive lineman after this next year so that was a concern we knew we had to address this year.
"We have a good mix of athletes that bring a wealth of size with them. We didn't set out to sign so many big receivers, and we signed a couple that are under six-feet tall, but we also had the opportunity to sign several that were over six-feet. They are all very talented and will provide us depth at a position where we lost a lot of talent this past year."
The 2014 Valdosta State signing class includes:
Josh Adams (6-4 - 320 - OT - Kennesaw, Ga. - Harrison HS): Played for Head Coach Matt Dickmann ... Led the Hoyas to a 5-5 record in 2013 ... Was a three-year letterwinner ... Graded out at 83 percent and earned first team All-Region and All-County honors while allowing only two sacks all year.
Chris Bahr (6-4 - 250 - DE - Kingsland, Ga. - Camden HS): Led Head Coach Welton Coffey's team to the Georgia AAAAAA State Playoffs ... Had 18 tackles on the season, including four tackles for loss ... Tallied three sacks and recovered a fumble on the season ... Had a season-best three tackles against Valdosta and Brunswick.
Marty Barrick (6-3 - 285 - C - San Diego, Calif. - San Diego Mesa JC): Played for Head Coach Henry Brown ... Was the starting center for an Olympian's team that went 2-8 ... Also started at center on a 5-5 San Diego Mesa team his freshman season ... Was named second-team All-Mountain Conference in 2013 ... Was named the team's Freshman Offensive Player of the Year in 2012 ... Also competes in track and field for the Olympians and is a preliminary qualifier for the state championship in the javelin.
Jerome Daniels (5-10 - 200 - RB - Valdosta, Ga. - Lowndes HS): Led Head Coach Randy McPherson's team to a 9-4 record and the Georgia AAAAAA State Playoffs ... Carried the ball 101 times for 475 yards and a team-best 10 touchdowns ... Averaged 4.7 yards per rush ... Caught six passes for 59 yards ... Scored a team-best 62 points.
Stephen Denmark (6-4 - 205 - WR - Tallahassee, Fla. - Rickards HS): Directed Head Coach Quintin Lewis' squad to a 9-2 record and a spot in the Florida 5A State Playoffs ... Had 49 receptions for 851 yards ... Caught 12 touchdowns on the season ... Also returned two kickoffs for touchdowns ... Earned second team All-State honors ... Runs track and field for the Raiders.
Daniel Durden (6-1 - 270 - DT - Stone Mountain, Ga. - Stephenson HS): Played for Head Coach Ron Gartell ... Led the Jaguars to a 9-3 record and a spot in the Georgia AAAAA State Playoffs ... Had 19 tackles on the season ... Registered three sacks and 6.5 tackles for loss.
Mike Eaddy (5-9 - 175 - CB - Blackshear, Ga. - Pierce County): Played for Head Coach and former Blazer standout Sean Pender ... Recorded 30 tackles and five interceptions for a team that went 10-2 and advanced to the Georgia AAA State Playoffs ... Tallied 40 tackles and seven interceptions as a junior on a team that also went 10-2 and advanced to the playoffs ... Was named All-Region in each of his last three seasons ... Also plays soccer for the Bears.
Andrew Harrell (6-5 - 300 - OG - Tallahassee, Fla. - Florida HS): Led Head Coach Jarrod Hickman's team to the semifinals of the Florida 4A State Playoffs ... Helped the Seminoles to an 8-5 record.
Shane Henderson (6-1 - 185 - WR - Columbus, Ind. - Hancock JC): Led Head Coach Kris Dutra's team with 74 receptions in 2013 ... Tallied 1,069 yards in 10 games ...Caught a team-high seven touchdowns ... Averaged 106.9 yards per game and 14.4 yards per reception ... Returned six punts for a total of 41 yards ... Earned All-Conference honors as a freshman in 2011 after averaging 102 receiviing yards and scoring 12 touchdowns ... Played prep career at Columbus East.
D'Angelo Holt (5-11 - 185 - WR - Ellenwood, Ga. - Martin Luther King, Jr. HS): Led Head Coach Cortez Allen's team to a 7-4 record and the Georgia AAAAA State Playoffs ... Caught 29 passes for 391 yards ... Scored two touchdowns on the season ... Also played for a Lions team that went 11-1 and made the AAAAA State Playoffs in 2012 ... Also plays baseball for the Lions.
Markel Horne (6-0 - 180 - ATHLETE - Wrightsville, Ga. - Johnson County HS): Played for Head Coach Don Norton ... Led the Trojans to a 10-2 record and a spot in the Georgia A State Playoffs ... Carried the ball 75 times for 1,002 yards ... Scored 15 touchdowns on the ground ... Completed 25-of-56 passes for 430 yards and four touchdowns ... Caught 18 passes for 630 yards and three scores ... Led the team with 116 points ... Also registered 48 tackles on the season ... Had three tackles for loss and recovered two fumbles ... Also intercepted four passes ... Was named the Region's Offensive Player of the Year and earned second-team All-State honors.
Anthony Ingram (5-10 - 175 - WR - Jasper, Fla. - South Alabama): Played prep career at Hamilton County ... Was a four-year letterwinner ... Was ranked as a three-star prospect by Rivals.com ... Helped lead Hamilton County to a district title and a spot in the Florida A State Playoffs as a senior ... Also lettered in track, basketball and baseball.
Jonathan Jackson (6-2 - 190 - CB - Warner Robins, Ga. - Lackawanna JC): Directed Head Coach Mark Duba's to a 6-4 record ... Tallied 12 tackles on the season ... Intercepted a pass and returned it 14 yards ... Also broke up to passes and blocked two kicks ... Missed half of the season due to injury ... Played prep career at Warner Robins High School.
Charkie Johnson (6-5 - 225 - DE - Metter, Ga. - Metter HS): Led Head Caoch Mike West's team to a 7-4 record and a spot in the Georgia AA state playoffs ... Tallied 101 tackles, including 20 solos ... Had 20 tackles for loss and seven sacks ... Caused three fumbles and recovered one ... Also had three quarterback hurries ... Earned first-team All-Region honors ... Registered 65 tackles for the Tigers in 2012 ... Tallied 12 tackles for loss and six sacks ... Intercepted two passes and recovered two fumbles ... Also forced two fumbles and had six quarterback hurries for a team that went 2-8 ... Also plays basketball and competes in track and field for the Tigers.
Drevon Jones (6-4 - 190 - WR - Kennesaw, Ga. - Harrison HS): Directed Head Coach Matt Dickmann's team to a 5-5 record in 2013 ... Tallied 40 receptions for 688 yards and seven touchdowns for the Hoyas ... Was named second-team All-Region.
Mitchell Kamm (5-10 - 190 - ATHLETE - Bethlehem, Ga. - Bethlehem Christian Academy): Played for Head Coach and former VSU Assistant Coach Lance Fendley ... Rushed for a school record 1,690 yards and 20 touchdowns ... Also caught two touchdowns and passed for two more ... Also tallied 112 tackles, including 24 for loss ... Intercepted two passes and forced a fumble while also causing one fumble ... Earned All-State honors ... As a junior in 2012, tallied 460 yards rushing and three touchdowns ... Had 33 tackles and broke up six passes while intercepting three more passes ... Also wrestles and competes in track and field for the Knights.
Adam Kelsie (6-1 - 290 - DT - Dover, Del. - Orange Coast College): Directed Head Coach Mike Taylor's team to a 3-7 record in 2013 ... Had 23 tackles on the season ... Recorded 11.5 tackles for loss.
David May (6-4 - 295 - C - Orange Park, Fla. - Fleming Island HS): Led Head Coach Frank Hall's team to a 10-1 record and the Florida 7A State Playoffs ... Earned All-State honors to go along with All-County and All-First Coast accolades ... set a FIHS record for most career starts by an offensive lineman and led the team in pancake blocks during senior season ... Also starred in wrestling and in the shot put in track and field for the Golden Eagles ... Placed third in the Florida 3A state track and field meet in the shot put in 2013 ... Won district shot put championship in 2012 and 2013 ... An honors student who has recorded all A's since kindergarten.
Malcolm McClenton (6-1 - 195 - LB - Thomasville, Ga. - Thomas County Central): Played for Head Coach Bill Shaver ... Guided the Yellow Jackets to an 8-3 record and a spot in the Georgia AAAAA State Playoffs ... Recorded 38 tackles on the season ... Had seven tackles for loss ... Intercepted three passes, including one that was returned for a touchdown ... Broke up four passes ... Also played wide receiver and caught 20 passes for 307 yards and four scores ... Was named All-Area and All-Region ... As a junior, had 12 receptions for 154 yards for a team that went 9-3 ... Also plays basketball and runs track for the Yellow Jackets.
Darrell Myers (6-6 - 200 - WR - Savannah, Ga. - Johnson HS): Directed Head Coach Thomas Tedder's squad to a 4-7 record and a spot in the Georgia AAA State Playoffs ... Caught 35 passes for 900 yards ... Averaged 25.7 yards per catch ... Also returned 9 kickoffs for 210 yards, an average of 23.3 yards per return, and one punt for 10 yards ... Tallied 40 receptions for 1,030 yards as a junior in 2012 ... Earned first-team All-Region honors ... Plays on the Atomsmasher's basketball team and led it to a state championship in 2012-13.
Bryant Pickney (6-2 - 180 - CB - Duluth, Ga. - Duluth HS): Led Head Coach Jason Conner's team to a 3-7 record ... Had 41 tackles on the season, including 21 solo stops ... Was named second-team All-Region ... Also competes in track and field for the Wildcats.
Tye Richardson (6-0 - 185 - WR - Marietta, Ga. - Dean College): Played for Head Coach Todd Vasey ... Led the Bulldogs to a 6-4 record ... Caught 14 passes for 349 yards ... Had three touchdown catches ... Carried the ball 10 times for 27 yards ... Also returned nine kickoffs for a total of 192 yards, an average of 21.3 yards per return ... Played prep career at Sprayberry High School.
Roland Rivers (6-3 - 225 - QB - Ellenwood, Ga. - Martin Luther King, Jr. HS): Led Head Coach Cortez Allen's Lions squad to a 7-4 record and the Georgia AAAAA State Playoffs ... Completed 174-of-287 passes for 2,685 yards ... Threw 24 touchdowns on the year ... Completed 60.6 percent of his passes ... Also ran for 385 yards and seven touchdowns while earning All-State Honorable Mention honors ... As a junior, completed 42-of-65 passes for 731 yards and nine touchdowns ... Also competed in swimming and track and field for the Lions.
Donte Robinson (6-1 - 200 - LB - Valdosta, Ga. - Lowndes HS): Led Head Coach Randy McPherson's team to a 9-4 record and a spot in the Georgia AAAAAA State Playoffs ... Tallied 30 tackles on the season ... Had five tackles for loss and one sack ... Broke up one pass and recovered a fumble.
Jevan Sampler (6-2 - 200 - LB - Marietta, Ga. - Wheeler HS): Played for Head Coach Mike Collins ... Tallied 78 tackles for the Wildcats ... Had 11 sacks on the season ... Earned Honorable Mention All-County in 2012 while leading Wheeler to a 6-5 record and a spot in the Georgia AAAAAA State Playoffs ... Also competes in track and field for the Wildcats.
Tim Sanders (5-11 - 190 - ATHLETE - Moultrie, Ga. - Colquitt County HS): Directed Head Coach Rush Propst's team to an 11-3 record and the semifinals of the Georgia AAAAAA State Playoffs in 2013 ... Carried the ball 36 times for 254 yards ... Also caught 16 passes for 148 yards ... As a defensive back, tallied 45 tackles and intercepted one pass, which was returned 16 yardss ... Also played on the 2012 Colquitt County team that went 11-3 and made the AAAAAA semifinals ... Had 35 tackles to go along with three interceptions and five passes broken up ... Also plays basketball and runs track for the Packers.
Romello Shumake (5-11 - 175 - WR - Lithonia, Ga. - Martin Luther King, Jr. HS): Led Head Coach Cortez Allen's team to a 7-4 record and teh Georgia AAAAA State Playoffs ... Caught 28 passes for 428 yards ... Had four receiving touchdowns ... Played for a 12-1 Lions team in 2012 ... Earned All-State honors as a senior and Played in the East-West All-Star game.
Ricky Small (6-3 - 295 - OT - Valdosta, Ga. - Valdosta HS): Played for Head Coach Rance Gillespie ... Led the Wildcats to a 6-5 record and a spot in the Georgia AAAAAA State Playoffs ... Graded out at 72 percent on the season ... Had 21 knockdown blocks ... Earned honorable mention All-Region honors ... Also competes in track and field for the Wildcats.
Antefernee Smith (6-2 - 195 - ATHLETE - Jasper, Fl. - Hamilton County): Played for Head Coach Blair Armstrong ... Led the Trojans to a 5-6 record in 2013 ... Completed 66-of-134 passes for 1,368 yards ... Passed for 14 touchdowns ... Carried the ball 46 times for 218 yards and five scores ... Also made six tackles on the season ... Was named second-team All-State.
Geomarey Smith (6-1 - 255 - DE - Midway, Fla. - East Gadsden HS): Led Head Coach Trace Lainge's team to a 5-7 record and a spot in the Florida 4A State Playoffs ... Registered 97 tackles on the season ... Had nine sacks and earned All-State and All-County honors ... Tallied 30 tackles and three sacks for a Jaguars team that went 8-3 and made the playoffs as a junior.
Tyler Wesson (6-2 - 320 - DT - McDonough, Ga. - Ola HS): Played for Head Coach John Kouzel ... Tallied 45 tackles for a Mustangs team that went 4-6 in 2013 ... Had nine tackles for loss and four sacks ... Forced on fumble ... Was a Metro Atlanta East/Wet All-Star and played in the Georgia-Florida All-Star game ... Tallied 47 tackles as a junior in 2012 ... Had three sacks to go along with six tackles for loss ... Also recovered one fumble.
Conner West (5-10 - 200 - LB - Metter, Ga. - Metter HS): Led Head Coach Mike West's team to a 7-4 record and a spot in the Georgia AA state playoffs ... Registered 113 tackles on the season ... Had 69 solo stops and 15 tackles for loss ... Was named the Region 2-AA Defensive Player of the Year ... Recorded seven sacks and had seven quarterback hurries ... Broke up a pass, caused a fumble and recovered a fumble ... Also plays tennis and baseball for the Tigers.
Greg Williams (5-10 - 185 - ATHLETE - Fort Valley, Ga. - Peach County HS): Played for Head Coach Chad Campbell ... Led the Trojans to an 8-4 record and a spot in the Georgia AAA State Playoffs ... Completed 130-of-256 passes for 2,284 yards and 16 touchdowns ... Also carried the ball 75 times for 151 yards and seven scores.