Head Coach Carl Pelini
Feb. 1, 2012
BOCA RATON, FL - Florida Atlantic University football continues to write a new chapter under the direction of new head coach Carl Pelini today with the signing of 23 players to a NCAA National Letter of Intent (NLI). The 23 signing today will add to the six who Pelini and staff brought to campus in January as mid-year additions.
"I am very pleased with the 2012 recruiting class," said Pelini. "Just over a month ago, I sent my new staff on the road with the mission to recruit the best football players they could find. We evaluated hundreds of players beyond football ability. We were looking for great players who were tough and physical on the field, and fine young men off the field. The success of the class is further evidence of the talents of this staff, and the potential of this program moving forward."
The group blends both youth with experience and touches nearly every position on the field and each player comes to FAU from winning football programs. The class features 19 freshman, eight juniors and two sophomores.
Pelini was hired on December 5, 2011 and quickly formed a staff that shared his vision and belief in working hard on the recruiting trails. He and assistant coach Jared Allen began touring the Palm Beach and Treasure Coast area almost immediately, as evident with four signees in the 2012 bringing the total of Palm Beach and Treasure Coast signees since Allen began recruiting the area to eight (2011 and 2012). The previous six years had yielded 13.
The six Owls who are enrolled are attending class, and will take part in Spring Drills to double the total number of previous 11 seasons of mid-year additions.
The six Owls who are enrolled are attending class, and will take part in Spring Drills to double the total number of previous 11 seasons of mid-year additions.
"I'm impressed by what FAU has done in a little over a month," said Chris Nee, Rivals.com Florida writer. "This is the best class I have ever seen for FAU."
Newcomer Roster and Bios
|Name||Pos||Cls||Hgt||Wgt||Hometown (Previous School)|
|Jarvon Anderson||RB/WR||Fr||5-9||195||Homestead, FL (Braddock HS)|
|Josh Ballesteros||LB||Fr||6-2||210||Miami, FL (Miami Central HS)|
|Brandin Bryant||DL||Fr||6-2||260||Omaha, NE (Omaha North HS)|
|Adrian Burton||DB||Fr||5-10||175||Pompano Beach, FL Blanche Ely HS)|
|Trevor Coley||DL||Fr||6-2||225||Miramar, FL (Miramar HS)|
|Arthur Crouse||OL||Fr||6-6||250||West Palm Beach, FL (American Heritage HS)|
|Dillon Deboer||OL||Fr||6-5||245||Tarpon Springs, FL (East Lake HS)|
|Isaac Edwards||DL||Fr||6-4||280||Tampa, FL (Jesuit HS)|
|Grant Flessner||QB||Fr||6-0||185||Sarasota, FL (Venice HS)|
|Jeremy Gaskins||RB||Fr||5-10||190||Deerfield Beach, FL (American Heritage HS)|
|Melvin German III||QB||Jr||6-2||210||Fort Myers, FL (Pearl River CC)|
|Chris Gilchrist||WR||Fr||6-5||190||Los Angeles, CA (Charter Oak HS)|
|Adarius Glanton||LB||Jr||6-1||215||Lakeland, FL (Eastern Arizona CC)|
|Jeremy Glinton||WR||Fr||6-1||180||Tamarac, FL (Northeast HS)|
|Tony Grimes||CB||R-So||6-0||175||Hollywood, FL (Hollywood Hills HS)|
|Martese Jackson||RB||Jr||5-6||165||Asheville, NC (Charles Erwin HS)|
|Mustafa Johnson||OL||Jr||6-3||295||Corona, CA (Norco High School)|
|Colton Kane||QB||G-Fr||6-3||190||Navarre, FL (Navarre HS)|
|Cre'von Leblanc||DB||Fr||5-11||175||Belle Glade, FL Glades Central HS)|
|James Mathis||DL||Fr||6-0||270||Valdosta, GA (Lourdes HS)|
|Jeremy McKnight||S||Jr||5-10||180||Round Rock, TX (Round Rock HS)|
|Terrell Mitchell||TE||Jr||6-6||260||New Orleans, LA (McEachern HS)|
|Shalom Ogbonda||DE||Fr||6-4||245||Sugar Land, TX (Kempner HS)|
|Josh Orsino||Ath||Fr||6-1||190||Fort Lauderdale, FL (Westminster Academy)|
|Johnathan Ragoo||OL||R-So||6-7||342||Miami, FL (Monsignor Pace HS)|
|Anthony Russell||TE||Fr||6-5||255||Daytona Beach, FL (Mainland)|
|Stern Vile||OL||Jr||6-5||335||Amsterdam, Netherlands (Eastern Arizona CC)|
|Denzel Whitfield||OL/DL||Fr||6-5||240||Monticello, FL (Jefferson HS)|
|Freedom Whitfield||LB||Fr||6-2||200||Fort Pierce, FL (Fort Pierce Central HS)|
Running Back/Wide Receiver
Braddock High School
High School:Played for Frank Rojas at Braddock High School where he rushed for 1,034 yards, on 102 carries, and 10 touchdowns and recorded 191 receiving yards with two scores as a senior added two interceptions both returned for touch downs along with a kick return for a score...named first- team FACA All-District 24 and first-team All-Dade County...two-sport athlete (football and track)
Personal:Son of Tornitua Anderson and James Brown...born November 13, 1992 in Miami.
Miami Central High School
High School:Played for Telly Lockette at Miami Central High School where he was selected to play in the Nike South Florida All-Star Game.
Personal:Son of Erma Ballesteros...born January 23, 1994...lives by the Motto "Work Hard, Play Hard."
Omaha North High School
Fort Scott Community College: Played for Curtis Horton at Fort Scott Community College where he played his first season for then head coach and current FAU assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Jeff Sims...redshirted at Fort Scott.
High School:Played for Larry Martin at Omaha North where he earned All-State honorable mention honors...two-sport athlete (football and wrestling).
Personal:Son of Robert and Tina Bryant...born September 16, 1993 in Omaha, Nebraska ...grandson of former University of Nebraska player Charles Bryant.
Pompano Beach, FL
Blanche Ely High School
High School: Played for Rodney Grey at Blanche Ely High School...recorded 57 tackles, three interceptions and 11 pass attempt break-ups...earned third team All-County honors...selected to play in the Nike Broward versus Dade All-Star Game...two-sport athlete (football and weightlifting).
Personal:Son of Sesiree Grooms...born September 13, 1993 in Pompano Beach.
Miramar High School
High School:played for Daman Cogdell at Miramar High School where he earned second-team All-State, first-team All-Broward and was a team captain for the State Championship Runner-ups...played in the Dade versus Broward, Nike and Under Armour All-Star Games...member of the honor roll.
Personal:son of Albert and Myrtle Coley...born July 13, 1994 in Dade County...relative of Rohan Davey who played for LSU and the New England Patriots.
West Palm Beach, FL
American Heritage High School (Delray)
High School:Played for Day Socha at American Heritage High School in Delray where he was a two-year starter...member of the 2011 Class 3A State Champions...earned second team All-Area...played in the Private School All-Star Game, the Nike Broward versus Dade All-Star Game and the Under Armor Broward Beach Bowl...carried a 3.9 GPA.
Personal:Son of Shane Griffin and Heather Clemente...born April 14, 1994.
Tarpon Springs, FL
East Lake High School
High School:Played for Bob Hudson at East Lake High School...two-sport athlete (football and basketball).
Personal:Son of Michael and Lyn Deboer...born July 26, 1994 in Clearwater.
Jesuit High School
High School:Played for Coach Harrell at perennial power Jesuit High School...was a three-year letterwinner for the Tigers and was selected as a captain for the 2011 season...started 11 games as a senior recording 36 tackles, three sacks and two pass attempt break-ups...was tabbed an All-County selection...invited to play in the City All-Star Game as well as the Sun Coast East-West Game and the Blue Grey North versus South Game...two-sport athlete (football and track, second in the state as a junior with a shot put distance of 57'4).
Personal:Born December 23, 1992.
Venice High School
High School:Played for John Peacock at Venice High School where he led the area in rushing, touchdowns (19) and tallied over 2,000 yards in combined run and pass...tossed 12 touchdowns...earned the team's offensive MVP award both as a junior and senior and was named third team All-State 7A, 1st Team All-Area...three-sport athlete (football, lacrosse and basketball)...invited to play in the Senior Area All-Star Game...early graduate.
Personal:Son of Kevin and Debbie Flessner...born July 1, 1994 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania...father was a collegiate wrestler.
Deerfield Beach, FL
American Heritage High School (Delray)
High School:Played for Doug Socha at American Heritage High School in Delray where he averaged 115 yards per game and 1,300 yards rushing on the season with 12 touchdowns and one interception as a senior...helped to guide Heritage to the 2011 Florida State Championship title for Class 3A...recorded 22 yards in the Stallions victory...earned first team All-County honors...selected to play in the Palm Beach versus Broward Bowl Game and participated in the Under Armor Broward Beach Bowl...finished his prep career with 2,000 plus yards.
Personal:Son of Jessie and Lanelda Gaskins...born January 16, 1993 in Boca Raton.
Melvin German III
Fort Myers, FL
Dunbar High School
Pearl River Community College:Played for Tim Hatten at Pearl River Community College where he completed 293 for 453 pass attempts for 3,121 yards and 21 touch downs...added 88 carries for 180 yards rushing and six scores....earned first-team All-Conference and All-America honors both seasons at PRCC...selected to play in the JUCO MATJC All-Star Game but a broken ankle kept him out of the game.
High School:Played for Phil Vogt at Fort Myers High School where he earned All-County and All-State honors as a senior and All-County honors as a junior.
Personal:son of Angela Thomas and Melvin German, Jr...born October 9, 1990 in Fort Myers...relative Jammi German played wide receiver for the University of Miami.
Los Angeles, CA
Charter Oak High School
High School:Played at Charter Oak High School where he recorded 46 receptions for 868 yards and nine touchdowns as a senior...returned on kick-off for a touchdown...earned first team All-CIF Inland Division...named co-MVP of the CIF...recorded a school record 96 yard touchdown reception and ending his senior campaign as the team's Most Valuable Receiver.
Personal:Born February 18, 1994...Guardians Geoffrey Vaughns and sister Tamara Sulphen Vaughns.
Lake Gibson High School
Eastern Arizona:Played for John O'Mera at Eastern Arizona Community College where he was named first Team All-Conference and All-Region...recorded 85 tackles, including 5.5 sacks as a sophomore including two forced fumbles.
High School:Played at Lake Gibson High School where he was a three-sport athlete (football, track and basketball)...four-star recruit coming out of high school.
Personal: Son of Dulite Buckmaster...born September 21, 1990 in Bartow.
Northeast High School
High School:Played for Donnell Bennett at Northeast High School where he recorded 31 catches for 621 yards and 12 touchdowns as a senior...earned second team all-county honors as a senior...invited to the Miami Dolphins and Nike All-Star Games...three-sport athlete (football, track and basketball).
Personal:Son of Tyrone and Vickie Glinton...born January 19, 1992 in Alachua.
Hollywood Hills High School
Arizona Western Community College:Played for Thomas Minnicle at Arizona Western Community College where he provided the bulk of that experience and maturity when the Matadors had to have it....in a crucial stretch of the season-playing three nationally teams in succession-Grimes changed the momentum of the game twice at Glendale with a pair of interceptions-the second one returned 59 yards for a touchdown... at season's end, he earned first team All-Region I and All-WSFL and was a member of the team that played in the 2011 El Toro Bowl, the NJCAA National Championship Game...on the year he recorded 36 tackles, including 18 solo, six tackles for a loss of 32 yards, one sack for a loss of four yards, tied as the team leader with four interceptions with 86 yards of return and a score, credited with 11 broken up pass attempts.
Ole Miss:Member of the Ole Miss team as a freshman...redshirted.
High School:Played for Scott Burnwell at Hollywood Hills High School where he was a a SuperPrep All-Region pick and rated the No. 110 player in Florida...named to the PrepStar preseason All-America team and the SuperPrep preseason All-Region team...earned second team All-Broward honors from the Miami Herald...rated as the No. 16 CB in the country by ESPN.com...ranked the No. 43 player in Florida by the Orlando Sentinel...listed as the No. 25 CB in the nation by Scout.com...participated in the Team USA vs. The World All-Star Game and the Offense-Defense All-America Bowl...ranked the No. 40 CB in the nation and No. 72 player in Florida by Rivals.com...posted 64 tackles and five INT's as a senior...totaled 41 tackles and five INT's as a junior...was a three-star recruit coming out of high school.
Personal:Son of Latanya Woods...born October 18, 1991 in Davie.
Charles Erwin High School
Fort Scott Community College: Played for Curtis Horton at Fort Scott Community College but originally came to the school to play for then head coach and FAU current assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Jeff Sims...tallied 1,100 yards in eight games with five touchdowns.
High School:Played for Mike Sexton at Erwin High School where he rushed for over 2,000 yards and led the conference in rushing yards.
Personal:Son of Nicole and Martin Jackson...born May 20, 1992.
Norco High School
Riverside Community College:Played for Tom Craft at Riverside Community College..earned first-team All-Conference honors as a junior and second team honors as a freshman...All-Academic.
High School:Played for Gary Campell at Norco High School.
Personal:Son of Evelyn Anderson...born June 15, 1986 in Los Angeles, CA
Grey Shirt Freshman
Navarre High School
High School:Played for Chad Lashley at Navarre High School where the dual threat rushed for 946 yards and nine touchdowns, and threw for 1,622 yards and 15 touchdowns...captured Pensacola News Journal's first team all-area honors... named All-Area MVP and was a PSA All-Star...named Northwest Florida Offensive Player of the Year and first team all-area, all as a senior...played in the PSA All-Star game...three-sport athlete (football, baseball and track)...academically he is a member of the A/B honor roll and has received the GPA Academic Award with a 3.58 GPA...chose FAU over Memphis.
Personal:Son of Jeff and Lisa Kane...born June 12, 1993 in Holland, Michigan.
Belle Glade, FL
Glades Central High School
High School:Played for Roosevelt Blackmon at Glades Central High School where he recorded five interceptions, 75 tackles, one sack and was credited with 10 broken up pass attempts, three forced fumbles, returned one punt and a kick for a score as a senior...at season's end named first team All-Area as both a junior and senior...credited with "the Hardest Hit" of the year in Palm Beach County...participated in the Nike South Florida All-Star Game and was invited to the Outback Bowl and the Nike All-Star Game...member of the Honor Roll.
Personal:son of Lawanda Leblanc...born July 27, 1994 in Palm Beach.
Lourdes High School
High School:Played for Randy McPherson at perennial power Lourdes High School...recorded eight sacks as a senior and earned the team's defensive MVP honor with 51 tackles as well as being an All-Region selection both as a junior and senior...played in the Rising Senior Bowl in Atlanta, Georgia...recorded 25 career sacks despite being double-teamed much of his senior season...two-sport athlete (football and track).
Personal:Son of Eric Mathis...born October 8, 1993 in Valdosta, Georgia...relative Randall Godfrey played for the Tennessee Titans, the Dallas Cowboys and the Seattle Seahawks...James mother, Catherine, passed away during his junior year which motivated him to put together a successful senior year both athletically and academically.
Round Rock, TX
Round Rock High School
Navarro Junior College:Played two seasons for Nick Bobeck and the Navarro Bulldogs, a team that captured the National Junior College Championship his freshman season and were 21-3 during his two years at Navarro...recorded 87 tackles, including 80 solo...added two interceptions, one fumble recovery which he returned for a touchdown.
High School:Attended Round Rock High School where he was a two-sport athlete (football and track).
Personal:Son of Jesse Hermen McNight..born July 2, 1991 in Boynton Beach.
New Orleans, LA
McEachern High School
Fort Scott Community College: Played for Curtis Horton at Fort Scott Community College but was originally recruited by then head coach and current FAU wide receiver/recruiting coordinator Jeff Sims...did not see action as a freshman as a late enrollee and tore his ACL as a sophomore.
High School: Played for Kyle Hockman at McEachern High School where he earned All-County and All-State honors as a senior...three-sport athlete (football, basketball and track)....was a four star tight end coming out of high school.
Personal: Son of Tanisha Mitchell and nephew of Marvin and Ayanna Mitchell...born March 27, 1990 in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Sugar Land, TX
Kempner High School
High School:Played for Darrin Andrus at Kempner High School where he recorded 41 tackles, including nine for a loss and three sacks as a junior...also credited with 24 quarterback pressures, six knockdowns and one pass attempt break-up...following his senior campaign honored on the All-Houston team, the All-District team and named a top-100 Athlete in Houston...two-sport athlete (football and soccer, a team that captured the district championship his freshman and sophomore seasons).
Personal:Son of Esther and Stanley Ogbonda...born December 24, 1994 in London, England.
Fort Lauderdale, FL
High School:Played for Greg Estep at Westminster Academy where he had 85 catches for 1,739 yards and 17 touchdowns...also had one kick return for a TD and a pass for a score...holds the single-season Broward County record for receptions (85), receiving yards (1,739) and touchdowns (22)...earned first-team All-Broward as both a junior and as a senior....participated in the Miami Dolphins All-Star Game.
Personal:Son of Leo and Cyndi Orsino...born June 8, 1993.
Monsignor Pace High School
Minnesota:Signed attended school did not play football
High School:Played for Alvin Slaughter at Monsignor Pace High School where he help lead his team to a 7-3 record in 2009...earned Class 3A All-State honors as a junior...was ranked as the No. 45 offensive guard in the nation by Rivals.com...listed as the No. 87 offensive tackle in the country by ESPN and Scouts Inc... ranked as the No. 135 offensive tackle in the nation by Scout...earned a three-star ranking from Rivals and a two-star rating from Scout...named first team All-Dade as both a junior and as a senior...participated in the Dade versus Broward All-Star Game and the All-American Game in Hawaii, where fellow signee Tony Grimes was a teammate...two-sport athlete (football and basketball who won the state championship his sophomore season).
Personal: Son of John and Sheryl Ragoo...born February 20, 1992.
Daytona Beach, FL
Mainland High School
High School:Played for Scott Wilson at Mainland High School where he was named to the FACA All-District Team and was a first-team All-Volusia County team member...two-sport athlete (football and basketball).
Personal:Son of Darren Brown and Helen Russell...born November 16, 1993 in Knoxville, Tennessee.
Amsterdam, NetherlandsEastern Arizona Community College
Eastern Arizona Community College:Played for John O'Mera at Eastern Arizona Community College...earned second-team All-Conference in WSFL...three-time Dean's List member.
High School:High school did not have football...played club 5-on-5 or 11-on11 club teams.
Personal:Son of Marc and Nancy Vile...born July 28, 1989 in Amsterdam, Neitherlands.
Jefferson High School
High School:Played for Jeremy Brown at Jefferson County High School where he recorded 101 tackles, including 15 sacks as a senior...efforts earned him a first-team spot on the All-State team...played in the Georgia versus Florida Border War...captured the team's scholastic award for the highest GPA.
Personal:Son of Cynthia Whitfield...born October 7, 1993.
Fort Pierce, FL
Fort Pierce Central High School
High School: Played for Josh Shaffer at Fort Pierce Central High School where he recorded five interceptions including four for touchdowns, 109 tackles including two sacks and earned first-team All-Area and second team All-State Honors...participated in the Outback Bowl...three-sport athlete (football, wrestling and track)...member of the honor roll.
Personal: Son of Anita Whitfield...born October 12, 1993 in Alachua..."Is looking forward to playing and is ready to have a good season."