Head coach Jared Elliott's second Western Illinois recruiting class delivered 16 new players for the Leatherneck program.
A year ago, Elliott and his staff had to work quickly in a shorter amount of time when the then 31-year-old Elliott was promoted from offensive coordinator to head coach when Charlie Fisher left Macomb to join the Arizona State staff.
As with a year ago, the Leathernecks brought in help for a young offensive line. Wednesday's National Signing Day brought the addition of seven O-line recruits--nearly half of what Western landed in its 2019 class.
Six of WIU's recruits came via transfer--two from FBS schools and four from the junior college ranks.
"This is the Christmas Day for coaches. It's always just a great day, a celebration all across the country," Elliott said on GoLeathernecks.com. "So many dreams realized for so many young men and families.
"You're going to hear my say excited a lot and love a lot, but I really am passionate about these guys. I'm beyond proud and humbled to welcome these young men into our family, Western Illinois University and the Macomb community. It's always a major decision. These guys aren't making it for the next four or five years, but really it's a 40, 50-year commitment. It's all about who you go off to college with and the people you meet, those relationships will last a lifetime. I am beyond proud to be their head coach."
Here's a look at the Leathernecks' 2018 recruiting class.
Recruits signed: 16
Top offensive need met: offensive line
Top defensive needs met: defensive back
Most players by position: offensive line (7)
Most players by state: Illinois (5)
States represented: 10 Illinois (5), California (2), Oklahoma (2), Arizona (1), Indiana (1), Georgia (1), Iowa (1), Kansas (1), Kentucky (1), North Carolina (1).
Shortest player: Bryce Cross, CB, 5-11
Tallest players: Blake Munte, TE 6-6
Heaviest players: Cade Kelly, Cristian Williams, Brian Woodard, 295
Lightest player: Bryce Cross, CB, 185
Player from the farthest distance: Brian Woodard, Atascadero, Calif. (2,043 miles from Macomb)
|FULL NAME||POS.||HT.||WT.||SIGNING PERIOD||HOMETOWN / HIGH SCHOOL|
|Lawson Aiken||DL||6-3||245||Regular||Brownsburg, Ind. / Brownsburg|
|Keyshawn Canady||CB||6-0||203||Early||Wallace, N.C. / Wallace Rose-Hill / East Carolina|
|Bryce Cross||CB||5-11||185||Early||Atlanta, Ga. / Chattahoochee / Georgia Southern|
|Colton Folliard||LB||6-2||235||Early||Wonder Lake, Ill. / McHenry Community / College of DuPage|
|Blake Muntz||TE||6-6||235||Regular||Richmond, Ky. / Madison Central|
|Max Spruill||OL||6-3||270||Early||Newport Beach, Calif. / Newport Harbor / Orange Coast College|
|Justin Wallace||TE||6-5||225||Regular||Albion, Ill. / Edwards Country|
|Brian Woodard||OL||6-5||295||Early||Atascadero, Calif. / Atascadero / Moorpark College|
|Ty O’Janovac||OL||6-4||270||Early||Joliet, Ill. / Joliet Catholic Academy|
|Josiah Rowland||OL||6-4||290||Early||Pleasant Hill, Iowa / Southeast Polk|
|Dionlashon Washington||WR||6-4||200||Early||Matteson, Ill. / Rich Central|
|Hazer Xanders||OL||6-4||270||Regular||Orlando, Okla. / Stillwater|
|Jordan Schippers||RB||6-1||195||Regular||Colby, Kan. / Colby|
|Tryvis Ousley||DB||6-1||190||Regular||Chicago, Ill. / Westinghouse College Prep|
|Cade Kelly||OL||6-5||295||Regular||Choctaw, Okla. / Choctaw|
|Cameron Overton||WR||6-3||178||Regular||Dallas, Texas / Parish Episcopal|
|Khalil Overton||WR||6-4||190||Regular||Dallas, Texas / Parish Episcopal|
|Cristian Williams||OL||6-5||295||Early||Phoenix, Ariz. / Centennial / Scottsdale Community College|