Cincinnati football announces 2012 signing class

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CINCINNATI – University of Cincinnati head football coach Butch Jones announced 30 members of the 2011 recruiting class on Wednesday, Feb. 1, the beginning of the NCAA initial signing period for football.

In addition to the 28 signees, UC announced the addition of two preferred walk-ons.

“Today is a very exciting day in our football family as we officially welcome 30 individuals to UC,” Jones said. “There’s a lot that goes into a recruiting class and a lot of people here at the University of Cincinnati have done a great job in helping us attract what we feel is a class that fits the standards and expectations associated with the program.”

The signing class features 16 defensive players set to join UC. Defensive back (8), and linebacker (5) lead the way along with three defensive linemen. Of the 14 offensive players, four are running backs, four offensive linemen, three wide receivers, a pair of quarterbacks and a tight end.

“The class lends itself to filling many needs within our program,” Jones said. “We wanted to put an emphasis on team speed in general while addressing needs at defensive back and linebacker. We feel like we attracted a very high caliber of student-athlete in this class, which will continue to allow us to build a championship culture both on the field and in the classroom.”

UC added recruits from nine different states, including 11 student-athletes from the State of Ohio, 10 from within the Tri-State area and five products of Indianapolis. The Bearcats added commitments from California (1), Florida (6), Illinois (1), Michigan (1), Pennsylvania (1) and Tennessee (2).

“We are always going to take care of our home base here in Cincinnati and northern Kentucky,” Jones said. “From there we branched out into a 115-mile radius from our campus, to Indianapolis, through the state of Ohio and then we moved into other areas of the country, Cleveland, Detroit, Florida and Memphis.”

The recruiting pundits rank this UC class as the best ever. Scout.com slots the Bearcats at No. 29 and second the BIG EAST Conference rankings. This marks the first team UC has entered Scout’s Top-30 its best ever league ranking. Rivals.com ranks the UC class as No. 44 overall out of 120 FBS schools.

Nine student-athletes, Kevin Brown (Indianapolis, Ind./Lawrence Central), Deionte Buckley (Indianapolis, Ind./Warren Central), Jonathan Burt (Indianapolis, Ind./Warren Central), Errol Clarke (Miami, Fla,/Central), Bennie Coney (Plant City, Fla./Plant City), DeShawn Dowdy (Akron, Ohio/North), Marcus Foster (Troy, Ohio/Troy), Trenton Norvell (Daytona Beach, Fla./Seabreeze) and Josh Posley (Indianapolis, Ind./Warren Central), enrolled at UC in January and are participating in the Bearcats’ off-season workout program in preparation for spring football.

The Bearcats, 2011 BIG EAST and AutoZone Liberty Bowl Champions, begin spring football on March 1.

Kyle Whittingham confirms Darren Carrington is at Utah, not yet a Ute

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Former Oregon wide receiver Darren Carrington‘s father confirmed his son of the same name was headed to Utah on Wednesday, and the head coach of the team in question has now double confirmed it.

But just because Carrington is at the University of Utah does not make him a Ute. Not yet.

Speaking at Pac-12 media days, Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham said Carrington is in school but has hurdles to clear to join the team.

“Not just yet. There’s a process that has to occur, some things that have to transpire and we’ve just got to wait for all that to kind of take place,” Whittingham said, via Deseret News.

It’s not sure what “things” have to transpire and when that is expected to happen; Whittingham couldn’t be sure Carrington would be with the team when camp opens Friday.

“Right now I don’t have a good answer because everything’s being sorted through right now,” Whittingham said.

Carrington will be immediately eligible to play as a graduate transfer. He caught 43 passes for a team-leading 606 yards and six touchdowns last season. Utah’s leading returning receiver, junior Raelon Singleton, nabbed 27 passes for 464 yards and four scores a year ago.

Clay Helton: O.J. not welcome back at USC

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OJ Simpson is one of the greatest Trojans of all-time. A unanimous two-time All-American, Simpson won the 1968 Heisman Trophy and was a member of USC’s 1967 national championship team.

OJ Simpson will also soon be a free man.

Granted parole from his felony armed robbery conviction last week, Simpson will be free on Oct. 1. The question, then, if you’re a reporter at Pac-12 media days is whether or not USC will welcome back one of its most accomplished — if not favorite — sons.

The answer? Uh, no.

To be clear, Simpson has not indicated he wanted to be part of USC football again. The 70-year-old indicated to the parole board he would return to Florida if granted his freedom.

USC has distanced itself from Simpson ever since his 1994 double-murder trial, but his Heisman Trophy remains on display at Heritage Hall.

4-star QB explains why he picked Princeton over Power 5 offers

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The NCAA likes to remind us that it represents thousands of athletes and most of them will go pro in something other than sports. Most of those athletes consciously know that, yet their college decisions are usually based on what school will help them go pro in sports.

Not Brevin White.

The Lancaster, Ca., quarterback is a 4-star prospect in 247Sports‘s 2018 rankings, with reported offers from Tennessee, Washington, Auburn, North Carolina and others. He’s going to Princeton. White committed to the Tigers on Wednesday, making him Princeton’s highest-rated recruit since Woodrow Wilson.

On Thursday, White appeared on The Dan Patrick Show to talk through why he turned down the SEC for the Ivy League.

Nevada names ‘Bama transfer as starting QB, but doesn’t say he’ll start opener

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David Cornwell, an Alabama transfer, will be Nevada’s starting quarterback — until he isn’t.

Wolf Pack head coach Jay Norvell said at Pac-12 media days that Cornwell will enter fall camp, which begins Monday, as the starter but that doesn’t mean Cornwell will actually start Nevada’s opener at Northwestern.

“David’s the starting quarterback right now and he’ll have to compete and earn that spot throughout training camp and if there’s reason for him not to be (the starting quarterback) we’ll address,” Norvell said, via the Reno Gazette-Journal. “Until we see that, we won’t make any changes at that position.”

A junior from Jones, Okla., Cornwell did not throw a pass with the Crimson Tide. He started Nevada’s spring game and completed 22-of-33 throws for 302 yards with two touchdowns.

“David fits those qualities and demonstrated those strengths the best out of all of our quarterbacks in the spring, and that’s why he was the starting quarterback,” said Norvell. “And the way he played in the spring game gave us even more evidence of that.”

Cornwell’s competition for the starting spot will be incumbent Ty Gangi, also a junior. Gangi appeared in 10 games last season, nailing 99-of-172 throws for 1,301 yards with eight touchdowns against six interceptions whilst rushing 49 times for 217 yards and three scores.