Five four-star prospects set to star on Group of Five level
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The assumption that only Power Five programs sign four-star prospects is widespread, and incorrect. On the first day of the Early Signing Period for the class of 2019, five four-star prospects signed with Group of Five programs, including a pair of quarterbacks out west.
The only Rivals250 prospect to sign with a Group of Five school on Wednesday, Bachmeier accumulated more than 20 scholarship offers during the course of his recruitment, including six from the Pac-12. The four-star prospect decided last May, however, that Boise State was home, and he never wavered on that commitment even when Boise State offered, and received a commitment from, three-star quarterback Kaiden Bennett in the fall. “Hank, he’s all about competition. He’s all about, ‘if you give me an opportunity, I’m ready to go out there, compete and take advantage of that,’” Boise State head coach Bryan Harsin said in his Signing Day press conference.
It was a small group of just 14 signees Houston announced on Wednesday, but the gem was Ceasar, a prospect who has been rated four-stars since the first rankings for the 2019 class. An explosive edge rusher, Ceasar tallied 21.5 sacks during his career at Ridge Point High. His offer list included programs from each of the Power Five Conferences, with schools as far away as Georgia and Virginia on that list. Ceasar chose to stay local and represent the hometown school with his commitment to the Cougars last July. Houston, of course, has a history with highly-ranked and recruited defensive linemen. They are the last Group of Five school to sign a five-star prospect, which was Ed Oliver in the 2016 class who went on to All-American honors this season.
One of the most productive quarterbacks in Arizona state history, Conover heads to BYU after throwing for more than 10,000 yards, 102 touchdowns and winning three state titles in his high school career. Conover was offered by Alabama, Ole Miss, Northwestern and South Carolina, as well as both in-state Pac-12 schools, but committed to BYU last May. Of Conover, BYU head coach Kalani Sitake said, “He’s a guy who had tons of attention and picked up a bunch of offers. We’ve been battling, just trying to hold onto him. We’re just really happy to have him.” Conover will take a two-year mission before suiting up for BYU.
Jones is a prospect we started seeing at camps soon after his junior season had concluded. He immediately caught our attention because he had the frame of a college offensive tackle prospect but also possessed a rocket for an arm. Cincinnati plans to start Jones out at the quarterback position when he arrives on campus. “Who am I to tell him he can’t play quarterback?” Cincinnati head coach Luke Fickell said. “I think he has a burning desire to play quarterback and we’re going to give him every opportunity to play quarterback and see where it goes from there.” Power Five schools never came around on offering Jones, likely due to those position questions and the fact he comes from a small Lexington-area school.
Boise State is the only non-Power Five program to sign more than one four-star prospect. Signing Kline, along with Bachmeier, means the Broncos have signed at least one four-star in the last three classes. Kline is an athlete prospect who played both linebacker and quarterback as a senior. Boise State will bring him in for either their hybrid linebacker/defensive end “STUD” position or keep him at linebacker. Kline committed to Boise State last May over offers from Arizona, Oregon and Washington State. UCLA offered in June, but Kline never wavered on his commitment to the Broncos.