February 5, 2013
NSD: What To Expect
GREENVILLE, N.C. - East Carolina is expected to sign a full class of 25 to 28 scholarship student/athletes for National Football Signing Day. The class of 2013 will hopefully go a long way toward to addressing ECU's personnel needs both on offense and defense with recruits who are to be the future of Pirate football.
Fourth year head coach Ruffin McNeill and his staff have worked tirelessly all year to bring in the best talent possible. East Carolina enters their last season in Conference USA before moving to the Big East Conference in 2014 and the move appears to have lured some additional talent into the fold.
Head of the Class
Highlighting the class is Rivals.com 3-star ranked quarterback Kurt Benkert, a 6-3, 204 from Cape Coral, Florida's Island Coast High School. Benkert was still 17 years old when he enrolled in January and is expected to participate in spring camp. He hopes to compete right away for a position on the depth chart.
Devaris Brunson from Lake City(S.C.)Lake City High is a 6-0, 206 pound harding hitting linebacker with 4.47 speed. Brunson is ranked three-stars by Rivals.com and one of the more aggressive players on the board.
Darren Dowdell is a 6-4, 224 pound defensive end who also doubles as a tight end. The multi-talened Dowdell is one of two Atlanta(Ga)Grady products expected to sign today. Teammate Dashawn Benton is a wide receiver, free safety prospect. At 6-0, 175, Benton has a 33 inch vertical jump and 4.58 speed.
Tristan Mumford from Statesville High in Stateville, N.C. is a 6-0, 228 pound 3-star Rivals.com running back and defensive end who projects as either a linebacker at ECU or at running back.
ECU picked up five or more commitments in the last weekend of the recruiting cycle including two who could make an immediate impact.
Demetri McGill, a 6-2, 297 pound defensive stopper from Virginia Beach(Va.)Ocean Lakes. McGill originally committed to Maryland before parting ways with the Terps in January.
Mykal Moody has been a sought after prospect for ECU who committed in the past few days. The Conway, South Carolina quarterback, slot receiver projects as a receiver for the Pirates.
Rivals ranks Moody the No. 14 overall in South Carolina. He runs the 40-yard dash in 4.39 seconds, has a 34-inch vertical, bench presses 295 pounds and squats 365 pounds. Moody threw for 1647 yards and 21 touchdowns and ran for 959 yards and another 17 touchdowns in only 7 games in 2012.
Another prospect who we really like is East Forsyth offensive tackle Brandon Smith. Smith is a 6-8, 330 pound monster of a lineman who should be able to flourish in the ECU offensive system.
Kirk Donaldson is a 6-5, 250 pound defensive end who is all muscle and could do some real damage defensively for the Pirates before it's all said and done.
Keeping up with the Joneses
Wide receivers Isaiah Jones, the son of former ECU and Dallas Cowboy great Robert Jones is a 6-1, 170 pounder with good hands.
He along with Jamel Jones, a 6-4 speedster from Rock Hill, South Carolina could prove to be a pair of very talented receivers for East Carolina in the years to come.
Center of Attention
The Pirates are always looking for a strong, experienced player to play the center position. They may have found a good one in 6-3, 314 pound Christian Matau from New Bern. Matau played tackle in high school but hopes to make the transition seemlessly.
Finding a Lane
ECU may have found a very interesting player at running back in Hutchinson, Kansas in the form of Terrell Lane who is a load to bring down at 5-11, 225 pounds.
The following is the complete list of commitments coming into Wednesday that we feel will sign on National Signing Day. The names on the list are all subject to NCAA and ECU eligibility and other criteria. Stay tuned to PirateIllustrated.com on Wednesday as East Carolina reveals the Class of 2013.
Randall Anderson DE 6-4/250
Malcolm Ashley OL 6-4/290
Demage Bailey DE 6-4/240
Kurt Benkert QB 6-3/204
Dashawn Benton ATH 6-0/175
Trevon Brown WR 6-3/205
Devaris Brunson LB 6-0/206
A.J. Coplon DB 5-11/170
Treshawn Council LB 6-1/230
Kirk Donaldson DE 6-3/250
Darren Dowdell ATH 6-4/224
Davon Grayson WR 6-2/175
Patrick Green LB 6-2/195
Isaiah Jones WR 6-1/170
Jamel Jones WR 6-4/190
Terrell Lane RB 5-11/225
Christian Matau OL 6-3/314
Demetri McGill DT 6-2/297
Mykal Moody ATH 5-11/180
Tristan Mumford ATH 6-0/228
Mike Myers DT 6-2/275
Travon Simmons DB 5-11/170
Brandon Smith OL 6-8/330
Xavier Smith DB 6-1/180
Marquise Whidbee WR 6-1/180
Larry Williams OL 6-4/280
Marquis Wallace OL 6-5/310
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