LOGAN — Utah State signed 14 players during the early signing period on Wednesday.
"This is a great start to our 2019 recruiting class and we are excited about the young men we are welcoming to the program," said returning head coach Gary Andersen in an official school press release. "There was a lot of work done by the staff that remained to solidify these commitments and we will now continue to look to fill the needs and find the difference makers that will help us in 2019 and beyond. We appreciate the help and support of Aggie Nation because it takes us all and you all have been a tremendous support. Go Aggies!"
One recruit that will join Utah State right away is inside linebacker Christian LaValle. The three-star prospect from Mission Viejo, California was initially committed to Arizona State under former head coach Todd Graham and had planned to join the Sun Devils in 2018. However, LaValle suffered a Lisfranc injury and was forced to take a grayshirt last season. At that same time, Graham was replaced by Herm Edwards as head coach.
Due to all of that uncertainty with his injury and a new coaching staff, LaValle decided to de-commit from Arizona State. The Sun Devils' loss is the Aggies' gain. Since LaValle has already graduated from high school, LaValle will enroll at Utah State starting in January and will be able to participate in spring practice.
Another linebacker recruit to watch that has already signed is Jaymason Willingham from Steilacoom, Washington. Willingham racked up 124 tackles and 22.0 tackles-for-loss on defense while also rushing for 1,198 yards and scored 16 offensive touchdowns. He's the kind of versatile linebacker that Gary Andersen had the last time he was in Logan.
Speaking of flexible linebackers, Simon Thompson was a Swiss Army knife for West Salem High School, in Oregon. He played quarterback and threw for 2,403 yards and 30 touchdowns. He also played safety and made 54 tackles and an interception last season. However, USU's press release lists Sione Moa also joining the team at linebacker after making 58 tackles and 6 sacks for Weber High School last season.
Josh Calvin is an intriguing quarterback that could be the future for the Aggies. The Lakewood, California native threw for 2,010 yards and 23 touchdowns as a senior at Mayfair High School. He was the all-Suburban League first team quarterback last season and could be an interesting understudy for Jordan Love.
Since Utah State is losing four senior offensive linemen, getting new ones is a big priority for Andersen and his new coaching staff. Enter the trio of Ashton Adams from Salem, Oregon, Aric Davison from Richland, Washington and Jackson Owens from Sandy. Davison is graduating early and will enroll at Utah State this January. Needless to say, they have plenty of chances to move up the depth chart with the number of starters that just left.
The Aggies also need to replace their No. 1 receiver as Ron'quavion Tarver is graduating. Perhaps Cam Lampkin from Mesquite, Texas can help fill the void. He caught 26 passes for 608 yards and six touchdowns for Poteet High School last season. He also returned a kickoff 99 yards for a touchdown.Comment on this story
A few local signees include DL Aaron Bredsguard from Viewmont High School and K/P Pierce Callister from Weber High School. Bredsguard made 11.0 sacks and was a first-team all-region 5 first-team selection. Callister was a 6A second-team all-state selection at kicker last season.
The Aggies also found California to be a fertile recruiting ground. Keith Harris from Lawndale, California is joining the team as a safety, while Dean Rice from Yuba City looks to contribute on the defensive line. Longsnapper Jesse James Vasquez comes to Logan from Thousand Oaks, California and was No. 17 by the Kornblue Snapping Fab 50.