UConn football targets defense on first day of new early signing period

Published on Wednesday, 20 December 2017 23:20
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STORRS - The UConn football team announced the signing of 19 players on Wednesday, the first day of the new early signing period for the class of 2022.

“We got better today,” head coach Randy Edsall said in a press release. “We are more athletic and we are faster than we were before making these additions.This is a great group of kids from a character standpoint, too. Our program is defintely headed in the right direction.”

UConn added 12 players on defense and seven on the offensive side of the ball, with many of the incoming Huskies playing multiple positions and multiple sports throughout their high school careers.

“Our staff was very efficient in getting the right class put together,” Edsall said. “We got a talented group, but also a group that wants to do things the right way.”

Following is a rundown on each of the Huskies’ signees.

Kevon Jones: Linebacker | 6’3” 238 | East Hartford HS | East Hartford

2017 CHSCA All-State performer. First Team Walter Camp All-Connecticut. Helped lead East Hartford to 2017 Connecticut state playoffs for first time in 30 years. Compiled 1380 rushing yards, 404 receiving yards and 21 total touchdowns in his high school career. Also accumulated 276 tackles, three sacks and three career interceptions on defense. Played a variety of positions throughout East Hartford career including quarterback, running back, tight end linebacker, wide receiver and kicker. Also was a member of the basketball team.

Travis Jones: Defensive Line | 6’4” 334 | Wilbur Cross HS | New Haven

2017 CHSCA All-State First Team member. First Team Walter Camp All-Connecticut. 2016 Class LL All-State and All-SCC selection. Named to the Walter Camp All-Connecticut team. 2016 New Haven Register All-Area and All-State Helped Governors gain 2,992 total yards, including 1,548 rushing yards and 18 touchdowns. Also made 61 tackles and seven sacks during his senior season.

Jordan Morrison: Safety | 6’1” 190 | Steinert-Hamilton East High School | Hamilton, N.J.

Played all over the field in high school including running back, wide receiver, quarterback, defensive back and kick returner. Set school records in career touchdowns (41) and single-season touchdowns (18). Received the Frank “Mammy” Piscopo Memorial Player of the Year Award. 2017 Times of Trenton Defensive Player of the Year. Two-time Times of Trenton All-Area team member. NJ.com All-State/Defense Second Team. Senior year rushed for 912 yards, recorded 520 passing yards, 19 total touchdowns on offense. Defensively, notched 55 tackles, six INT’s and two sacks.

Jonathan Pace: Defensive End | 6’5” 260 | St. Sebastian’s School | Boston, Mass.

2017 ISL All-League Selection. Boston Globe 2017 All-Scholastic. Two-way starter.

Keyshawn Paul: Corner | 6’0” 170 | Miami Jackson High School | Miami, Fla.

Matched up on the best receiver each game, recorded three INT’s and 12 PBU’s as a senior. Three-sport athlete at Jackson High School. Played basketball, football and track and field.

Malik Banks: Safety | 6’1” 175 | Howard High School of Technology | Hockessin, Del.

2015-2016 Division II state championship team. Played running back, wide receiver, defensive back and kick returner in high school. 2017 DIFCA All-State First Team performer. 2016 DIFCA All-State Second Team.

Oneil Robinson: Safety | 6’1” 177 | Capital Prep Magnet School | Hartford

Played wide receiver and defensive back in high school. Hauled in 118 receptions for 2405 yards and 22 touchdowns in his career. On defense, recorded 133 tackles and 13 interceptions. 2017 CHSCA Class S All-State performer.

Elijah Jeffreys: Wide Receiver | 6’4” 190 | Somerville High School | Somerville, Mass.

Two-sport star in football and track and field. Played quarterback at Somerville High School. Competed in DII state championship track meet. NEC MVP, Boston Globe 2017 Scholastic.

Steven Krajewski: Quarterback | 6’4” 205 | Colquitt County School | Moultrie, Ga.

Threw for 2962 yards and 30 touchdowns in his three-year high school career. Added 460 rushing yards and six TD’s. Led team to state championship game his senior year in Georgia’s largest classification. Team Captain. Team Offensive Player of the Year. Second Team All-Region.

Peter Rooney Jr. Offensive Line | 6’5” 282 | Westminster School | Atlanta, Ga.

First Team All-Region. Two-time All-State his junior and senior seasons. Lettered all four years and finished his career as the winningest player in school history. Won the state championship his sophomore year, Reached the state semi’s his freshman year and state quarterfinals in junior and senior season.

Heron Maurriseau: Wide Receiver | 5’10” 168 | Saint Anthony’s High School | Mastic Beach, N.Y.

In two seasons, recorded 43 receptions for 666 yards and nine touchdowns. Also competed in track and field in high school. Ranked #4 wide receiver in New York.

Khyon Gillespie: Running Back | 5’11” 175 | Capital Prep Magnet School | Hartford

Two-time Class S All-State performer (2016 & 2017). Played on both sides of the ball in high school. In 37 career games, carried the ball 377 times for 3773 yards and 40 touchdowns. Averaged 10.0 yards per carry. Also hauled in 42 receptions for 759 yards and four touchdowns. On defense, secured 110 career tackles including three sacks, nine tackles for loss and nabbed two interceptions.

Hunter Webb: Safety | 6’2” 210 | Loyalsock Twp High School | Mountoursville, Pa.

Three-sport athlete in high school (football, baseball and basketball). Played running back, wide receiver and linebacker. Accumulated 797 career all-purpose yards and scored 10 total touchdowns. On defense, racked up 395 total tackles, 15 sacks, two forced fumbles and four interceptions. Named to 2016 All-State, All-Conference and All-District teams..2016 Williamsport Sun Gazette Linebacker of the Year.In 2017 set school single-season tackles record with 179. Three-time all conference performer in baseball. Two-time all-conference performer in basketball and won 2016 Conference Defensive Player of the Year. 2017 PIA AAA All-State.

Ryan Carroll: Corner | 6’1” 180 | Potomac High School | Temple Hills, Md.

Played football and ran track at Potomac High School. Had 60 tackles, 3 INT’s, one sack and one forced fumble in his career. First All-Conference and All-MET Honorable Mention.

Noel Ofori-Nyadu: Offensive Line | 6’3” 285 | Timberview High School | Arlington, Texas

Two-time All-State Academics. Lettered two years in track and field. Was first team All-District and All-State in shot put and discus.

Lwal Uguak: Defensive End | 6’4” 245 | Harry Ainlay High School | Edmonton, Alberta

Helped lead Ainlay High School to a Provincial High School Tier 1 Championship. Helped hold the top-ranked rushing attack to just 43 yards in championship game. Recorded 22 tackles in the regular season including a Carr Conference leading 7.5 sacks. First Team All-Canadian.

Shamel Lazarus: Cornerback | 6’3” 170 | Erasmus Hall High School | Jamaica, N.Y.

New York vs. New England All-Star 2017. Erasmus Hall finished the year 10-1 and lost in the PSAL City Championship game.

Dylan Niedrowski: Offensive Line | 6’4” 280 | Exeter Township High School | Reading, Pa.

Ranked No. 9 Penn Preps Offensive Tackle in 2017. First Team All-Berks as a tackle.

Jeremy Lucien: Corner | 6’2” 180 | Choate Rosemary Hall | Moore Township, Pa.

First Team All-Conference. Player of the Year Honorable Mention. Recorded 45 tackles, 10 PBU’s and two interceptions as a senior. Has a passion for building robotics and engineering. Participated in three-month immersion program in Spain during sophomore year of high school. Took five courses and lived with a family that only spoke Spanish. Dean’s list student and headmaster’s scholar.

Posted in The Bristol Press, UConn on Wednesday, 20 December 2017 23:20. Updated: Wednesday, 20 December 2017 23:23.