Press Conference Quotes
Feb. 1, 2006
ORLANDO - UCF head football coach George O'Leary announced Wednesday that 21 student-athletes have signed National Letters of Intent to play football for the Golden Knights beginning in the fall of 2006.
The Golden Knights signed seven defensive linemen, three wide receivers, three offensive linemen, two tight ends, two linebackers, one running back, one quarterback, one defensive back and one athlete.
"I think the key to any good recruiting class is that you go after your needs as a program and that is exactly what we did with this class," commented O'Leary. "We brought in a number of defensive linemen, which was a necessity for our program. We then tried to help each area with the best person we could find to make them a better group. It is a class with size, speed and great potential."
UCF recruited players from eight different states, including 11 student-athletes from Florida high schools and four high school players from the state of Georgia. The Golden Knights also got one commitment each from players in the states of Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, South Carolina and Texas. UCF's commitment from the state of Texas is the first in school history from a high school player.
The 21-player class featured 19 high school signees and two junior college transfers.
2006 UCF Football Recruiting Class
Milton, Fla./Milton HS
Four-year letterman at Milton High School for head coach Mike McMillion * First-Team Class 4A all-state performer according to the Florida Sports Writers Association * three-year starter for Milton who was a captain as a senior * all-around threat who excelled both offensively and defensively * 612 yards of total offense, including 384 on the ground and three touchdowns his senior season * 58 total tackles, including 30 solo stops on defense * blocked two field goals in a high school all-star game * lettered three years in track in high school * son of former Florida State standout running back Greg Allen.
Coach McMillion on Allen: "He is a very versatile athlete who has played every position with great skill, toughness and contact speed."
Bonita Springs, Fla./Estero HS
Three-year letterman at Estero High School for head coach Brian Jones * all-conference and all-county selection * graded out above 90 percent on the offensive line both as a junior and senior * 95 career pancake blocks * also lettered two seasons in basketball and two in track.
Coach Jones on Buxton: "Michael has the physical tools to be as good as he wants to be. The sky is the limit on Michael's potential."
Ormond Beach, Fla./Seabreeze HS
Three-year letterman at Seabreeze High School in Daytona Beach for head coach Marc Beach * listed as the 40th-ranked offensive guard in the nation according to Rivals.com * rated as a three-star recruit by Rivals.com * No. 96 prospect in the state of Florida by the Orlando Sentinel * No. 74 prospect in the state of Florida by Rivals.com * first-team all-state class 4A selection as a senior * first-team all-Central Florida and all-conference selection * team captain as a senior * named his team's most outstanding offensive lineman in 2005.
Miami, Fla./Hialeah HS
Three-year letterwinner at Hialeah High School for head coach Steve Smith * all-county selection in both football and basketball * four-year letterman in basketball, including two seasons as the team's captain * captain of the football team as a senior * finished 2005 with 57 tackles and six sacks * given his team's Iron Man Award * Student of the Year by the Florida African American Alliance * three sacks in one game vs. North Miami Beach in 2005 * 2005 Florida Governor Student of the Year award recipient.
Coach Smith on Haughton: "Rashidi is an outstanding young man who does his best on and off the field. He will be an outstanding representative for UCF and the football program."
Conyers, Ga./Heritage HS
Four-year letterman at middle linebacker for head coach Al Pelligrino at Heritage High School * named the Atlanta Touchdown Club Player of the Week as a senior * honorable mention Prep Star All-American * three-time all-county selection * Rockdale County Defensive Player of the Year in 2005 * team defensive MVP as a senior * set a new school record for tackles in a single-game with 22 * set school record for tackles in a season with 152 as a senior * averaged over 16 tackles a game as a senior and over 15 tackles per contest as a junior * four-year letterwinner in track who holds the school record on the discus.
Coach Pelligrino on Henderson: "Chance has been an exciting player to coach. He always led by example and he made the other players around him better. It was a privilege to coach such an athlete."
Marathon, Fla./Marathon HS (Copiah-Lincoln CC)
Two-year performer at Copiah-Lincoln Community College in Wesson, Miss. for head coach Glenn Davis * originally signed with Mississippi State coming out of high school in 2003, but enrolled at Copiah-Lincoln CC * played on the prep level at Marathon High School for head coach Lance Martin * played in the California-Florida game in 2003 * rated as the No. 3 defensive tackle in the state of Florida coming out of high school by Rivals.com * four-year all-county and three-time all-state performer at Marathon * 50 tackles, 16 tackles for loss and five sacks at Copiah-Lincoln * totaled 92 tackles, 22 for loss and six forced fumbles his senior year in high school * lettered three seasons in basketball in high school.
Coach Davis on Hill: "Rex can be an impact player at UCF and in Conference USA. He is big, strong and aggressive. He enjoys playing the game."
Miramar, Fla./Parkway Academy
Three-star rated recruit according to Rivals.com * listed as the 75th-best wide receiver prospect in the nation by Rivals.com * preseason No. 30 prospect in the state of Florida by Rivals.com * lettered two years at Krop High School in Miami for head coach Mike Searcy * currently enrolled at Parkway Academy * was not able to play football for Parkway in the fall due to transfer issues * team MVP as a junior * big-play wide receiver who caught 18 passes for 600 yards and nine touchdowns as a junior * also scored three rushing touchdowns * first-team all-Dade County as a junior.
Coach Searcy on Houston: "Keith is an outstanding athlete who can play many positions. He is a playmaker and leader on the field."
Starke, Fla./Bradford HS
Four-year letterman at Bradford High School for head coach Chad Bankston * a three-star recruit according to Rivals.com * rated as the 59th-best cornerback in the nation by Rivals.com * No. 85 recruit in the state of Florida according to the Orlando Sentinel * Class 2A First-Team all-state selection by the FSWA * all-are honoree who was also team captain * rushed for 952 yards and 13 touchdowns as a senior * 1400 yards rushing and nine rushing scores as a junior * also caught 38 passes for 409 yards and nine receiving touchdowns during his junior season * collected four letters in track during his prep career.
Conyers, Ga./Salem HS
Three-year letterman at Salem High School for head coach Frank Caputo * former high school teammate of current Golden Knight Jayson Williams * two-time first-team all-state performer as a junior and senior * named first-team all-area as a junior and senior * 36th-ranked prospect in the state of Georgia in the preseason according to Rivals.com * first-team all North Georgia defensive tackle * named Atlanta Touchdown Club Player of the Week during senior campaign * finished senior season with 96 total tackles (50 solo stops), six tackles for loss and three sacks * eight quarterback hurries and one fumble recovery.
Coach Caputo on Johnson: "Torell has been the epitome of our program * a young man who leads on and off the field. I feel very fortunate to have coached such a great young man. He will be missed."
Greensboro, N.C./ Eastern Guilford HS (Reedley JC)
Rated as the No. 2 junior college quarterback recruit in the country according to CollegeFootballNews.com * also listed as the website's No. 27 prospect nationally among junior college prospects * Rivals.com lists Mayo as the No. 41 junior college prospect in the nation * played two seasons at Reedley Junior College in California * graduated from Eastern Guilford High School in North Carolina in 1999 and was drafted in the 13th round by the Milwaukee Brewers in the 1999 Major League Baseball Draft * spent four seasons as a center fielder in the Brewers organization * first team all-state, all-region and all-conference honoree at Reedley * 185-of-300 passing for 2,474 yards and 22 touchdowns in 2005 at Reedley * as a freshman in 2004, Mayo was 178-of-365 for 2,128 yards and 13 touchdowns * versatile athlete in high school who lettered four seasons in both basketball and baseball.
Mount Dora, Fla./William Penn HS (Pa.)
Lettered four years in football between Mount Dora High School and William Penn High School in York, Pa. * spent his senior season with the Bearcats in Pennsylvania and played for head coach Matt Ortega * led William Penn in tackles despite playing in only nine games * team captain and defensive MVP his senior season * 58 total tackles in nine games, including two sacks * returned one interception for a touchdown * versatile athlete who also lettered three years in basketball and two seasons in track *first team all-area and second team all-state as a junior at Mount Dora * named his team's defensive MVP as a junior after leading the team with 120 tackles * also totaled two interceptions and five sacks during his junior campaign * earned the honor of team captain as a sophomore.
Coach Ortega on McNealy: "DaQuwan is a great character type of kid. He is a natural leader and a great kid for any program."
Canton, Ga./Woodstock HS
Three-year letterwinner at Woodstock High School for head coach Mike O'Brien * Cherokee County Gridiron Club Linebacker of the Year * all-county and all-region selection at linebacker * finished senior season with 134 tackles, one sack, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries * three interceptions, two returned for touchdowns * totaled 14 receptions for 357 yards and five touchdowns at tight end * defensive captain as a senior * led team to regional co-championship and an appearance in the state playoffs * also lettered two years in basketball and one season in baseball.
Coach O'Brien on Miller: "Bruce has come a long way in his ability and performance. He will have a great career at UCF. Bruce is as good a person as he is a football player."
St. Petersburg, Fla./Boca Ciega HS
Three-year letterman at Boca Ciega High School for head coach Jean Gordon * all-conference and all-Suncoast selection * team MVP as a senior * track standout who lettered two years in the sport * third in the state of Florida in he long jump and triple jump * finished senior season with 29 receptions for 660 yards and eight touchdowns * returned three kickoffs for touchdowns on special teams * has run a timed 4.43 40-yard dash.
Winter Park, Fla./Winter Park HS
Three-year letterman at Winter Park High School for head coach Larry Gergley * First-Team Class 6A All-State selection on defense * Orange County Defensive Player of the Year according to the Orlando Sentinel * listed as the state's 59th rated prospect by the Orlando Sentinel * first-team all-county and all-Central Florida honoree * played in the Central Florida All-Star game and was named team MVP as a senior * 63 tackles, 12 tackles for loss and eight sacks in 2005 * also caught 15 passes for 405 yards and four touchdowns at tight end * part of an 11-2 Winter Park team that reached the Florida Class 6A state semifinals.
Haines City, Fla./Haines City HS
Two-year letterwinner at Haines City High School for head coach Bill Buldini * first-team all-Polk county honoree * second-team all-state selection * participated in the Central-South Florida all-star game.
Coach Buldini on Reid: "Jah is the hardest working kid I have ever coached on and off the field. Jah's best football is ahead of him."
Leesville, La./Leesville HS
Four-year letterwinner at Leesville High School for head coach Kevin Magee * rated as a three-star recruit by Rivals.com * listed as the 58th-best defensive lineman in the nation according to Rivals.com * two-time all-state honoree * three-time all-district and all-conference selection * all-state academic honoree * also lettered four years in track, soccer and power lifting * 56 tackles and three sacks as a senior * 22 tackles for loss, 11 pass breakups and seven quarterback hurries in 2005 * 78 total tackles, 11 sacks, three forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries as a junior * selected as a defensive captain as a senior.
Coach Magee on Sauvao: "Wesley's actions on and off the field best describe the quality of person that he is. Wes is a hard working and dedicated athlete who excels on and off the field."
Mansfield, Texas/Summit HS
Three-year letterman at Summit High School for head coach Kyle Geller * the first high school signee from the state of Texas in UCF football history * outstanding athlete who also earned four letters in track * district champion in the 200 meters with a time of 21.03 as a junior * first-team all-district on the gridiron * team won back-to-back district championships * rushed for 1,006 yards on 120 carries as a senior with 13 touchdowns * only played in five games as a junior, but rushed for 617 yards and six touchdowns, including an average of 8.3 yards per carry.
Coach Geller on Smith: "Phillip is a player who gives 100 percent. He has one speed, full speed. He practices hard and the results show on the field. He is a tough, slashing runner that can out run you."
Gainesville, Fla./Buchholz HS
Four-year letterwinner at Buchholz High School for head coach Jay Godwin * FSWA Class 5A First-Team all-state defense as a senior * second-team all-state selection following his junior season * three-star recruit according to Rivals.com * listed as the 91st-best prospect in the state in Rivals.com preseason Florida top 100 * No. 69 prospect in the state of Florida according to the Orlando Sentinel * two-time all-area and all-conference honoree * 68 tackles and six sacks in 2005, including 14 tackles for loss and two fumble recoveries * caught 12 passes for 148 yards and a touchdown on offense * three-sport athlete in high school who also lettered three years in basketball and one year in track.
Rome, Ga./Rome HS
Three-year letterwinner at Rome High School for head coach Sid Fritts * second-team all-state selection as a senior * first-teak all-region and all-area * team captain who was selected to play in the North/South Georgia All-Star game * elected Homecoming King at Rome High School * earned team's Iron Man Award * twice named area's offensive player of the week in 2005 * spent time both at quarterback and wide receiver in high school* 58 rushes for 506 yards and seven touchdowns * 31-of-46 passing for 428 yards and three touchdowns at quarterback * caught 22 passes for 572 yards and five touchdowns at wide receiver * totaled seven interceptions on defense and returned two for touchdowns * also scored two touchdowns on punt returns.
Coach Fritts on Watters: "UCF is a great fit for Brian and he will be a great fit for UCF. Brian is a great player who plays with great effort."
Lexington, S.C./White Knoll HS
Three-year letterman for head coach Mark Cagle at White Knoll High School * holds four career school records at White Knoll, including the most sacks (11.5) and tackles for loss (28) in school history * first player from his high school to play in the Shrine Bowl, which features the top prep players in the state of South Carolina * ended his senior season with 100 tackles, 19 for loss, with four sacks and 10 quarterback pressures * rated as the No. 2 defensive line prospect in the state of South Carolina according to the Spartanburg Herald-Journal * rated as the newspaper's No. 20 prospect in the state among all positions * holds school records for max bench press (400 pounds) and max squat (550 pounds) * SCVarsity.com all-state team member * all-region and all-area selection * named team's most outstanding defensive lineman and given the team's captain award.
Coach Cagle on Williams: "David has a tremendous motor and he is exceptionally quick off the ball. He pursues the ball very aggressive. After two games, he was getting doubled teamed and teams were running away from him. He is a tremendous player and tremendous young man."
Tallahassee, Fla./North Florida Christian
Three-year letterwinner for former head coach Pete Walker * Florida Sports Writers Association Class 1A Second Team All-State honoree * 13 receptions for 238 yards and three touchdowns as a senior * 36 tackles (20 solo), 3.5 sacks and five tackles for loss defensively in 2005 * four-year letterman in basketball and was the team's most valuable player as a junior * football team captain as a senior and a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.