2023 Football Signing Day Thread


20 signed, including Carvalho whose letter just arrived. The surprises:
Utes gained one commit: RB John Randle
Utes lost 1 commit: WR Carlos Wilson flipped to Arizona
Everything else went as expected.

Three of the recruits are mission bound: Clegg, Helu, and Fonoimoana.
Utes expect 2-3 returning from missions for next year, including Nate Ritchie. I don’t have any other names.

Here’s a link to the 247 list.

News of the kids on the wish list this morning:
Walker Lyons TE - no news
Tausili Akana DE - Texas
John Randle RB - He’s a Ute!
Luke Talich ATH - Notre Dame
Xavier Guillory WR transfer - no news
JayQuan Smith ATH - no news
Trejan Bridges, a JUCO WR who started at Oklahoma. - no news

FYI Former Ute Malone Mataele landed at USU.

That’s what I have. Please post updates if you have anything to add.


With the exception of one player on the list at Rivals, we added all plus another.

They had our class at #20. Now comes the hard part. Getting the kids coached up to play at the highest level of college football. Given the success our staff has had, it will happen.


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NIce summary. Thank you!

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UPDATE: LB Sione Fotu will return from a mission and join the team this year. He started a few games for the Utes as a true freshman back in 2020.


Transfer LB Levani Damuni (from Stanford) signed today.

The JUCO WR I referenced is Trejan Bridges. I updated his info above. He’s at a JUCO in the LA area. He had some police issues at Oklahoma. I don’t know if they have been resolved.

Turns out Carvalho is a PWO. He tweeted out a fancy signing ceremony and fooled me. Sorry about that. He’s also mission bound.

Transfer TE Seydou Traore (Arkansas State) tweeted that he has officially visited Utah. Another one to keep an eye on.


Traore to Colorado.

Probably gonna see a lot of “to Colorad9” for a while.


There’s more hype in Boulder than reality can bear. Don’t get me wrong - hype is important, hype can be good. But hype and recruiting are only 2 of the ingredients.

Ask USC fan how the hype train ride is. It’s awesome… until you run into a real football team, with a real culture, with players who really want to lay it out, guys who aren’t afraid of adversity. With all the Prime publicity and hype, and even with the fast-change nature of the Portal, CU is ranked #43 in recruiting, 2 spots ahead of Arizona.

FB teams are built from the inside out, with culture that carries over from season to season, class to class. 247’s national recruiting analyst Brandon Huffman says is best: This is what PAC-12 coaches had always feared: What if Whittingham started to get elite talent


I hate to call out a 20 year old, but Traore made a really dumb decision. He chose Deion’s charisma and a losing program over a winning program with a better fan base, a TE friendly offense, and better QB play. The new Colorado OC does not use the TE in his offense, so Traore will be lucky to see 2-3 balls thrown his way in any game. Compare that to the way the Utes use Keithe, Kincaid, and now Yassmin! A truly bad decision.

I almost forgot. CU has one other advantage. Ralphie the bison is a cool mascot!

What America will see is coaching at a Power 5 school is very different from coaching at Jackson State. Also, coaching in the “Conference of Cannibals” is harder than the East Coast Biased media gives the conference credit for.

If he does win enough, he will be gone back to the ACC in short order ala Mel Tucker and Willie Taggart (Oregon). If CU keeps losing, by season 3 they will roll him for another coach. Colorado’s alumni are too damned stuck reliving their past to realize it took McCarthy years to get Ralphie to winning.


Deion is all about Deion. He’ll be gone the instant he gets a better offer, and he’d consider any ACC or SEC offer in Florida or an adjacent state to be a better gig than Colorado.

Any Colorado recruit who thinks Deion will be around in 2-3 years is delusional.


I want to see if his five star CB’s are afraid to tackle like he was.


This was one of the biggest eye openers going from the MWC to the PAC. Every team has really good coaching, the kind that can take away your first, second and sometimes your third options.

Look at even the Todd “Cheater” Graham fiasco - he had staff that actually spent the time to figure out opposing teams’ signals, and they signaled in the right defense for that play. That was way wrong, and Graham rightfully got canned, but that’s not a trivial task.

Now, think about the staffs who don’t cheat, and how much time that takes, adjustments made, etc.

It was a huge jump from the MWC. Add in the talent at the skills positions and the depth needed to play well in November. In hindsight we were all delusional that we could take our BCS busters or the 2008 team and contend right away.


Snip from The Athletic today:

Utah (22nd nationally, 3rd in the Pac-12)

The Utes earned a commitment from four-star running back John Randle Jr. on Wednesday, but the foundation for this class was built in the weeks leading up to the early signing period.

Offensive linemen Spencer Fano and Caleb Lomu and edge rusher Hunter Clegg are all four-star prospects who should help the Utes play to their identity — strong play along the line of scrimmage. Utah had to win tough recruiting battles for Fano and Lomu, and had to flip Clegg from Stanford,

The Utes also landed a commitment from four-star corner CJ Blocker, a Texas native, a week before the early signing period.

In total, Utah signed a program-record six blue-chip prospects and should end up with its first top-25 class of the modern recruiting era.

Two things have led to the rise.

One is Utah’s continued ability to close strong on the recruiting trail. “They kind of wear on you,” Petagna said. “Because they’re Utah, because people have such a comfort level with Kyle Whittingham — prospects and families know what to expect — to me what I’ve seen, I feel like prospects go through the process looking for something bigger, maybe shinier then they realize the best option was right in front of them the entire time. That’s Utah.”

And second, the Utes’ recent success on the field has made them more attractive.

“I think they’re becoming more of a destination spot and their reputation is really starting to climb nationally with back-to-back Pac-12 championships, Rose Bowl appearances,” Petagna said. “And they’re really starting to become a soft landing spot for guys in the transfer portal as well, so I think they’ve got a good thing going.”

Utah might not be done yet. The Utes are in the mix for four-star tight end Walker Lyons, who decommitted from Stanford in late November.


In reading the USC snip, they mention all the great offensive players they recruited, and only a DE and an LB on the defensive side.

The Coliseum will be where shootouts go to live, seemingly, in perpetuity.


All it takes is one turnover in a track meet game to end up losing.

Just ask any of us fans from the Jim Fassel era.


Riley has always struggled with tough, physical teams.

Lucky for Riley, the B1G isn’t known for their tough, physical defenses and awful weather.


Fassel’s problem was he didn’t stop at one. :grin:


Only on the close losses did he stop at one.
The blowouts on the other hand…:laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing: