Hope springs eternal on eve of Signing Day

2014-02-04T18:00:00Z 2014-02-04T23:43:35Z Hope springs eternal on eve of Signing DayGreg Rachac The Billings Gazette

I've never really bought into the Signing Day hype. It's a very important day for college football programs nationwide -- perhaps the biggest day of the offseason. They restock the shelves with new recruits who represent the hopes for success two and three years down the road.

But is it worth the buildup? The fact is, we just can't predict which players will emerge. Inevitably, one or two tagged as "can't miss" prospects simply won't pan out. And just as inevitably, one or two guys who walk on will make a big impact (think: Caleb Schreibeis or Marc Mariani). But we just won't know who until a couple years from now.

At Montana and Montana State, it's no different. And tomorrow, Mick Delaney at UM and Rob Ash at MSU will announce their 2014 recruiting classes. The Bobcats class this year will be bigger than Montana's based on available scholarships. Here is a peak at the verbal commitments made to each school as they stand on Signing Day Eve (based on published reports and/or social media information):

Grizzlies

NAME  POSITION  SCHOOL 
Will Weyer  QB  Bozeman (Bozeman, MT)
Alex Thomas DL/LB  CMR (Great Falls, MT) 
Carson King  LB  Beaverhead County (Dillon, MT) 
Kole Swartz  DE  Hellgate (Missoula, MT) 
Shayne Cochran LB  Culbertson (Culbertson, MT) 
Evan Epperly WR/DB Glacier (Kalispell, MT) 
Reese Carlson  WR  Gig Harbor (Gig Harbor, WA) 
David Reese  OL  Clackamas (Clackamas, OR) 
Evan Miksch  OL  Lake Stevens (Lake Stevens, WA) 
Caleb Lyons  ATH  Lakes (Lakewood, WA) 
Josh Buss  LB  Mountain View (Meridian, ID) 
Peter Brewer  LB  Los Alamos (Los Alamos, NM) 
Evan Defer LB/DL  Damonte Ranch (Reno, NV) 

Bobcats

NAME  POSITION  SCHOOL 
Grant Collins  LB  Bozeman (Bozeman, MT) 
Connor Sullivan  WR  Ennis (Ennis, MT) 
Austin Oldenburger  OL  Manhattan (Manhattan, MT) 
Trevin Thompson  PK  Helena (Helena, MT) 
Tucker Yates  DL  Colstrip (Colstrip, MT) 
Hunter Mahlum  WR  Hellgate (Missoula, MT) 
Koni Dole LB  Huntley Project (Worden, MT) 
Joey Marinello  OL  Eastview (Apple Valley, MN) 
Tavon Dodd RB Reagan (Houston, TX)
Eric Prevost  LB  Charter Oak (Covina, CA) 
Zach Wright  DE  New Braunels (New Braunfels, TX) 
Wade Webster  OL  Bettendorf (Bettendorf, IA) 
Bryce Alley  DB  North Shore (Houston, TX) 
Justin Paige  WR/DB  Morton Ranch (Katy, TX) 
Curtis Amos  TE  Centennial (Burleson, TX) 
Braelen Evans  DB  Hebron (Carrolton, TX) 
Tyrone Fa'anono  OL/DL  Oaks Christian (Westlake Village, CA) 
DeMonte King  DB  Los Alamitos (Los Alamitos, CA) 
Mitch Herbert WR  Sheldon (Eugene, OR) 
George Moeakiola  DB  Trinity (Euless, TX) 
Chris Misaalefua  OL  Lindsay (Lindsay, CA) 
Matt Stewart  Santiago (Corona, CA) 
Wawa Leota *  DL  Tyler JC / Trinity (Euless, TX)
Bryson Keeton *  DB  Nevada / Ridgeview (Bakersfield, CA)

* - Transfer

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Greg Rachac

Sportswriter for The Billings Gazette covering Montana and Montana State athletics in addition to various high school sports.

Slim Kimmel

Online sports editor for The Billings Gazette.

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