Welcome to Georgia State's full-circle coverage of football signing day as Coach Bill Curry and his staff sign the second class in Panther history. Signees will be posted as they start to come in at 7:30 a.m. Coverage from every angle will continue with up-to-the-minute Twitter posts, a continually updated blog and photos as they become available. If that wasn't enough, make sure you make your way to the Student Center Ballroom at 4:30 p.m. to watch video highlights of all of the new signees as the coaching staff breaks down the class.
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Updated as of: 3:36 p.m.
ATLANTA--Adding size, speed and experience, particularly on defense, the Georgia State football program announced the signing of 23 student-athletes to National Letters of Intent on Wednesday's National Signing Day.
In addition to the 23 who inked their letters Wednesday, head coach Bill Curry's program has also added six transfers who are already enrolled this semester for a total class of 29. This year's group marks the program's second recruiting class, which joins the 70 players, including scholarship athletes and walk-ons, who have been on campus since August.
Georgia State's inaugural football season kicks off Thursday evening, Sept. 2, 2010 at the Georgia Dome against Shorter.
"While I was learning how to be a head coach at Georgia Tech, a friend of mine was Tom Landry, at the time the coach of the Dallas Cowboys," said Curry. "He had volunteered to help me so I called him and asked if I could just come sit with him one afternoon. I asked him 'How did you stand it to have losing seasons with people giving you a hard time? Now you have so many systems and you are so much smarter than everyone else.' Landry said 'You know when I got smarter? I got smart when we got Ralph Neely, Bob Lilly, Bob Hayes, Roger Staubach, Mel Renfroe.'
"Well we just got a lot smarter today on our coaching staff because we have secured the signatures and national letters of intent from an outstanding class," said Curry. "We got people who can play."
Twenty of the 29 newcomers are defensive players, and 10 are offensive or defensive linemen.
"Last year, if a good player wanted to come, we felt like we had to take him, regardless of position, and it just so happened that we got a lot more offensive players," said Curry. "So this year, we went right to work on defense.
"Another intent this year was to find big folks," Curry continued. "We needed to find a lot of big people that are tough and agile enough to do what is required of big people in our sport today. We also had to find people that can compete academically at Georgia State University, which is a difficult kind of human being to find. We feel we filled all our needs and we feel wonderful about the class and we can't wait to get them on campus and get to work."
The class includes 10 junior college transfers and one four-year transfer (Jocquez Fears from Northeastern) as the Panthers looked to add experience for their first season.
"Bringing in junior college players this year was important for two reasons," said Curry. "Number one is obvious - we needed to add some experience so we are not running on the field with all freshmen and redshirt freshmen.
"Number two, we needed to balance our roster so that all of scholarships are not in one or two classes."
Fourteen of the new additions hail from the state of Georgia, including Metro Atlanta high school products Cole Moon, RB, St. Pius X, Eric Odonkor, DB, of Peachtree Ridge, Demarius Matthews, DB, McEachern, Tim Wynn, OL, Mays, Alex Findura, DL, Woodland, Jamal Ransby, Newnan, and Alex Gambrah, Riverside Military.
The class represents high schools and junior colleges in eleven states (Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, North Carolina, Arkansas, Texas, Arizona, California, Ohio and Kansas) as well as Canada.
The Panthers also added several talented skill players from the state of Florida, Isaiah Howard (Boynton Beach, Fla./American Heritage), Justin Hughes (Port St. Lucie, Fla./Treasure Coast) and Albert Wilson (Port St. Lucie, Fla./Port St. Lucie), versatile athletes who are expected to play in the secondary.
The complete list:
|Christo Bilukidi||6-4||295||Defensive End||Ottawa, Ontario||St. Patrick's HS/Eastern Arizona JC|
|Ulrick John||6-8||275||Offensive Line||Hinesville, Ga.||Bradwell Institute|
|Cole Moon||6-2||235||Running Back||Atlanta, Ga.||St. Pius X|
|Aaron Gambrah||6-2||200||Linebacker||Locust Grove, Ga.||Riverside Military|
|Alex Findura||6-5||235||Defensive End||Stockbridge, Ga.||Woodland HS|
|Blake James||6-1||220||Linebacker||Little Rock, Ark.||Little Rock Central HS|
|Sherrod Loud||6-1||285||Nose Guard||Albany, Ga.||Worth County HS|
|Eric Odonkor||5-11||210||Defensive Back||Duluth, Ga.||Peachtree Ridge HS|
|Jamal Ransby||5-8||165||Cornerback||Newnan, Ga.||Newnan HS|
|C.J. Stephens||6-4||255||Defensive Tackle||Woodland, Ala.||Woodland HS|
|Patrick Baker||6-0||170||Kicker||Vero Beach, Fla.||Vero Beach HS|
|Isaiah Howard||5-11||165||Defensive Back||Boynton Beach, Fla.||American Heritage HS|
|Jarrell Robinson||6-2||205||Linebacker||Portal, Ga.||Portal HS|
|Drew Pearson||6-5||222||Tight End||Lindale, Ga.||Pepperell HS|
|Arthur Williams||6-4||275||Tight End||Miami, Fla.||Carol City HS/Palomar College|
|Demarius Matthews||5-10||165||Cornerback||Powder Springs, Ga.||McEachern HS|
|Tim Wynn||6-3||270||Offensive Line||Atlanta, Ga.||Mays HS|
|Khiry Karriem||6-3||270||Defensive Tackle||Columbus, Miss.||Columbus HS/Itawamba CC|
|Justin Hughes||5-9||165||Defensive Back||Port St. Lucie, Fla.||Treasure Coast HS|
|LaDeven Kirkland||6-5||340||Offensive Line||Miami, Fla.||Booker T. Washington HS/Yuba College|
|Terrance Woodard||6-2||300||Offensive Line||Ocilla, Ga.||Irwin County HS|
|Jeff Holmes||6-3||295||Defensive Tackle||Cincinnati, Ohio||Hughes Center HS/Independence CC|
|Albert Wilson||5-9||185||Defensive Back||Port St. Lucie, Fla.||Port St. Lucie HS|
|Jocquez Fears*||5-9||208||Defensive Back||Fairburn, Ga.||Creekside HS/Northeastern|
|Kalan Jenkins*||6-3||245||Tight End||Midlothian, Texas||Midlothian HS/Navarro College|
|Olufemi Opanubi*||6-1||210||Linebacker||Los Angeles, Calif.||University HS/West L.A. CC|
|Jake Muasau*||6-1||243||Linebacker||Sierra Vista, Calif.||Buena HS/Phoenix College|
|Louie Muasau*||6-0||235||Linebacker||Sierra Vista, Calif.||Buena HS/Phoenix College|
|Evan Bostic*||6-3||230||Linebacker||Shelby, N.C.||Crest HS/Jones County JC|
* - indicates already enrolled at Georgia State for spring semester