National Signing Day is a week away, and Rob Ash at Montana State and Bobby Hauck at Montana are on the trail looking to finalize their recruiting efforts and get their prospects to sign on the dotted line on Feb. 4th.
For the second straight year, Ash has focused his recruiting efforts in the state of Texas, having secured verbals from five players from the Lone Star state so far, one year after nabbing eight there. These recruits join a quartet of local Montana commits: Safety Joel Fuller of Libby, receiver Jase Muri of Billings West, cornerback Chris Wilson of Great Falls CMR and defensive end Brad Daly of Helena Capital. According to ESPN.com, there are more than a few still interested in the Cats.
Hauck, meanwhile, has gotten a couple strong commits from the state of Washington that we know of so far, and the upper-northwest has for years has been one of the Grizzlies' pipeline areas. Those join a trio of Treasure State verbals: Running back/linebacker Brock Coyle of Bozeman, running back/defensive back Steve Rominger of Missoula Sentinel and Jordan Tripp of Missoula Big Sky. You can bet there will be more to come for UM, as its list of interested prospects also looks formidable.
The following is a look at what the Cats and Griz are losing heading into to 2009 and a peek at the verbal commitments each team has secured in advance of Signing Day:
MONTANA STATE BOBCATS
Top players lost: LB Bobby Daly, RB Demetrius Crawford, OL Jim Verlanic, OL Lou Saucedo, TE Brandon Bostick, WR Deon Toliver, WR DeAndre Green.
2009 Verbal Commitments to date: Denarius McGhee, QB, Dallas, TX — 2,344 yards, 17 TDs in 2008 Shonquille Dorsey, DL, Dallas, TX — 83 tackles, 12 sacks in 2008 Everett Gilbert, WR, Dallas, TX — 1,812 total yards, 17 TDs in 2008 Darius Jones, CB, Dallas, TX David Abercrombie, OT, Dallas, TX Killian Fitzpatrick, OT, Beaverton, OR Zach Minter, DT, Glendale, AZ Joel Fuller, S, Libby, MT Jase Muri, WR, Billings, MT Chris Wilson, CB, Great Falls, MT Brad Daly, DE, Helena, MT Travis Bertelsen, RB, Wibaux, MT
Top players lost:QB Cole Bergquist, S Colt Anderson, OL Colin Dow, WR Mike Ferriter, LB Tyler Corwin, OL J.D. Quinn, DL Craig Mettler.
2009 Verbal Commitments to date: Aaron Roberts, WR, Spokane, WA — 75 catches, 1,164 yards, 11 TDs in 2008 D.J. Zapata, QB, San Marcos, CA -- 1,950 yards in 2008 Kyle Hoffman, OG, Eastsound, WA Travis Andrus, WR, Kalispell, MT Brock Coyle, RB/LB, Bozeman, MT Steve Rominger, RB/DB, Missoula, MT Jordan Tripp, ATH, Missoula, MT Clay Pierson, WR/DB, Twin Bridges, MT Bryce Carver, WR, Dillon, MT Ty Timmer, LB, Great Falls, MT Josh Pelczar, WR/DB, Billings, MT