Indiana announces 25-player signing class

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(Here’s the press release from Indiana announcing the Hoosiers’ 2012 recruiting class.)

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Indiana head football coach Kevin Wilson announced Wednesday the signing of 25 student-athletes to National Letters of Intent to play for the Hoosiers in 2012.

“We addressed our needs in a very positive manner.” Wilson said. “We were very aggressive in our sell and our approach with not only the player we were looking for, but also the individual and the student. Our staff did a tremendous job working to bring in this talented group of 25 young men.”

IU signed 13 defensive players, 11 offensive players and one athlete. The Hoosiers added six defensive linemen, four defensive backs and three linebackers on defense and four offensive linemen, two quarterbacks, two wide receivers, two tight ends and one running back on offense.

The class features players from 10 different states, including eight from Indiana, three from Illinois, three from Ohio, two from California, two from Florida, two from Georgia, two from Texas, one from Arizona, one from Mississippi and one from Missouri.

“We had a lot of great help along the way,” Wilson said. “Not only from our staff, but from our players, our administration, the academic community and other coaches, especially the basketball staff. Our recruits left campus with a positive vibe and we are pleased with the kids we got.”

Here is a list of Indiana’s 2012 signees:

Name    Pos.    Ht.    Wt.    Hometown/Previous School
Jacarri Alexander    LB    6-1    234    Winter Haven, Fla./Iowa Central C.C.
Jacob Bailey    OL    6-5    285    Carmel, Ind./Cathedral H.S.
Dimitric Camiel    OL    6-7    300    Houston, Texas/Westfield H.S.
Cameron Coffman    QB    6-2    191    Peculiar, Mo./Arizona Western C.C.
Tevin Coleman    RB    6-1    202    Tinley Park, Ill./Oak Forest H.S.
David Cooper    LB    6-1    230    Lilburn, Ga./Coffeyville (Kan.) C.C.
Caleb Cornett    WR    6-3    175    Indianapolis, Ind./Ben Davis H.S.
Kevin Davis    WR    5-11    175    Indianapolis, Ind./Warren Central H.S.
Dan Feeney    OL    6-4    302    Orland Park, Ill./Carl Sandburg H.S.
Dawson Fletcher    DB    6-0    190    West Chester, Ohio/Lakota West H.S.
Ralphael Green    DL    6-5    320    San Antonio, Texas/Sam Houston H.S.
Shawn Heffern    DL    6-6    245    Carmel, Ind./Carmel H.S.
Ricky Jones    ATH    5-10    170    Sarasota, Fla./Booker H.S.
Tanner Kearns    TE    6-5    225    Lexington, Ohio/Lexington H.S.
Adam Kranda    DL    6-6    240    New Castle, Ind./New Castle H.S.
Nick Mangieri    DL    6-5    240    Peoria, Ill./Dunlap H.S.
Antonio Marshall    DB    5-11    190    Pitts, Ga./Georgia Military College
Justin Rayside    DL    6-3    246    Corona, Calif./Riverside (Calif.) C.C.
Wes Rogers    OL    6-4    285    Indianapolis, Ind./Lawrence Central H.S.
Jason Spriggs    TE    6-7    265    Elkhart, Ind./Concord H.S.
Nathan Sudfeld    QB    6-5    215    Modesto, Calif./Modesto Christian H.S.
Ryan Thompson    DB    5-10    186    Pontotoc, Miss./Itawamba (Miss.) C.C.
Alex Todd    DL    6-3    285    Streetsboro, Ohio/Streetsboro H.S.
Jordan Wallace    LB    6-0    230    Indianapolis, Ind./Warren Central H.S.
Tregg Waters    DB    6-0    185    Phoenix, Ariz./Glendale (Ariz.) C.C.

Notes on Class:
* Jacarri Alexander, Cameron Coffman, David Cooper, Justin Rayside, Ryan Thompson and Tregg Waters are currently enrolled in classes for the spring semester and will participate in spring practice.
* Nathan Sudfeld took a mission trip to Uganda as a 14-year old. His brothers, twins Matthew and Zach, played college football. Matthew was a wide receiver at Brown University (2007-11) and Zach was a tight end at the University of Nevada (2007-11).
* Kevin Davis and Jordan Wallace are brothers.
* Shawn Heffern was recruited by defensive tackles coach Mark Hagen, who also attended Carmel High School
* Nick Mangieri’s brother, P.J., is a senior long snapper at the University of Nebraska. His uncles, Ed and Dan Sutter, both played linebacker at Northwestern University. Ed also played five seasons in the NFL (Cleveland, Baltimore and Atlanta).
* Cameron Coffman’s father, Paul, was a standout tight end at Kansas State University as well as the Green Bay Packers (1978-85) and the Kansas City Chiefs (1986-87). He was a teammate of IU safety Mark Murphy’s father, Mark, with the Packers. Cameron’s brother, Chase, played tight end at the University of Missouri (2005-08) and the Cincinnati Bengals (2009-10). His brother, Carson, played quarterback at Kansas State University (2007-10).
* Jacob Bailey was a high school teammate of IU wide receiver Kofi Hughes, safety Jake Zupancic and linebacker Kyle Kennedy. Wes Rogers was a high school teammate of IU quarterback Tre Roberson. Tanner Kearns was a high school teammate of IU safety Shaquille Jefferson.
* Caleb Cornett is the first Ben Davis product to sign with the Hoosiers since current Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Tandon Doss (2008-10).
* Alex Todd was the first commitment to the 2012 signing class and Tanner Kearns was the first to turn in his NLI this morning.

Illinois boots three players charged with home invasion and robbery

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Illinois head coach Lovie Smith has dismissed three players charged with home invasion and robbery. Offensive linemen Darta Lee and Howard Watkins and tight end Zarrian Holcombe have all been dismissed from the program, according to a statement.

Lee and Holcombe were previously suspended by Smith for violations of team rules. Watkins had also been indefinitely suspended following the initial allegations. All three players claimed the incident that led to the charges was nothing more than an innocent prank, but the authorities and Smith didn’t seem willing to buy that claim.

Each player faces a mandatory prison sentence of 4-15 years on each count against them if found guilty.

Report: Conference USA to air at least 15 football games on Twitter in 2017

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Conference USA is in a position where it needs to think outside the box and look to stay ahead of the curve in a changing TV landscape. It appears to be ready to air games on Twitter in 2017.

A report from The Virginian-Pilot says broadcast company STADIUM will air at least 15 football games involving Conference USA teams this fall. STADIUM is the result of a recent merger between the American Sports Network, 120 Sports and Silver Chalice (which also owns Campus Insiders and the online ACC Digital Network). The ASN had owned the broadcast rights to Conference USA games through the end of the 2017-2018 sports season that will carry over to the STADIUM deal (allowing for Conference USA basketball games to be aired on Twitter as well). It was announced earlier this month STADIUM intended to broadcast Conference USA games on Twitter, but it was unknown how many games might make it to the networking service. STADIUM reportedly has an interest in continuing to air Conference USA contests beyond the next athletic season.

Conference USA still has broadcast deals with ESPN and CBS Sports in effect as well, so don’t expect the premiere matchups in the conference to be aired on Twitter. However, by sharing the games online, Conference USA is hoping to reach a wide-spread audience and have the opportunity to be a trending topic. It could work, as Twitter would make sure the game is given a steady feed to allow for a pleasant viewing experience and fan interaction in real time.

Conference USA saw TV revenue take a big hit over the last year. Last summer, Conference USA’s television revenue reportedly dropped to just $2.8 million for the entire conference following realignment changes. Finding a home on a streaming platform now would be key for the conference’s future stability.

Alabama DC Jeremy Pruitt named son after former Tide linebackers Reuben Foster and Ryan Anderson

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It is not at all uncommon for children born in the state of Alabama to be named after Alabama football legends, but it is not every day you see a child of an Alabama coach receives a name inspired by former Alabama football players.

Defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt announced the birth of his new son, Flynt Anderson-Foster Pruitt, on Twitter. Alabama fans will likely already know the connection to the new child’s name, as used the last names of two former Alabama football players to create the middle name of Anderson-Foster; Ryan Anderson and Reuben Foster.

Maybe this is more common than I’m aware of, but regardless of how often a coach names a child after former players, this is a testament to the relationship the Pruitt family established with both former Alabama linebackers. And now there will be a bond for years to come between the coach and his family and Anderson and Foster.

Helmet sticker to Al.com.

Wisconsin’s season tickets for 100th anniversary of Camp Randall are a thing of beauty

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The Wisconsin Badgers are gearing up for their 100th season playing home football game sin Camp Randall Stadium. As part of the season-long celebration, Wisconsin put some brilliant artistic detail into their season tickets for the 2017 season.

Each ticket to a home Wisconsin game is designed like a retro-style program. These are beautifully done and mimic the style of a program cover from decades past. I’m particularly fond of the program cover for the Purdue game, which features Wisconsin’s Bucky floating in space with a ship with the Purdue logo nearby. Is that a space train? The Band Day program for the game against Florida Atlantic also looks fantastic.

These tickets will surely be must-have collectibles for Wisconsin fans. If Wisconsin wants to make a few extra bucks, then blowing up these images and selling them as posters may be a good decision as well. And I wouldn’t put it past Wisconsin to suit up in a retro-style uniform for at least home game this season in Madison.