Key Players in Nevada Wolf Pack's 2014 Recruiting Class

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODA

National Signing Day is a big deal for college coaches, players, and fans. It gives hope to the future of programs across the nation. For coach Brian Polian, today brings the same to the Wolf Pack. Hopefully the names on this list, and the numerous others not mentioned below make the most of their time in Reno with the Nevada football team.

This year finally gave coach Brian Polian a chance to shine. The now second year coach is best known in coaching circles as a relentless recruiter. Nevada hired him to do just that, recruit. Legendary coach Chris Ault, Polian's predecessor, was not known for his highly touted recruiting classes, but rather for developing the talent once on campus with examples such as quarterback Colin Kaepernick, tight end Virgil Green, or safety Duke Williams who all currently play in the NFL. Polian and his staff of course will have to develop talent once in Reno, but in his first season with a full recruiting calendar, the former Texas A&M special teams coach is quietly putting together, on paper, one the Wolf Pack's most impressive groups of incoming freshman.

As mentioned above this is all on paper. Often times in college football the most highly touted recruits flame out and become nothing more than a backup while a player with little recognition out of high school ends up being all-conference. So keep that in mind when judging a recruiting class. College football is a lot different than high school ball.

Nevertheless here is a breakdown of some of the more highly touted members of Nevada Wolf Pack's 2014 recruiting class.

WR Drew Celis - 6-0/185

One of Nevada's biggest needs in this class was at wide receiver. In the upcoming 2014 season, three of the top five receivers (Aaron Bradley, Richy Turner, and Nigel Westbrooks) will be seniors and the other two will be sophomores (Hasaan Henderson and Jerico Richardson). Beyond those five players, the Wolf Pack have almost no experience so gaining a 3* recruit, according to Scouts, was huge for coach Polian. It would be smart for Nevada to redshirt Celis this coming year, so that the following year, the 2015 season, Celis could still have four years of eligibility and likely be third on the depth chart, behind Henderson and Richardson.

For highlight tape click here.

QB Hunter Fralick - 6-3/200

Who doesn't love the local quarterback starting for his hometown team story? No one, that's who. Fralick, a dual threat quarterback from Spanish Springs High School, threw for nearly 2,500 yards while running for 1,222 his senior year. Fralick is the perfect fit for the pistol offense, which is likely why he chose to remain close to home. Coming in as a freshman, the local QB is virtually guaranteed to redshirt because of the depth at quarterback for the Wolf Pack. Starting quarterback Cody Fajardo returns and is a lock to start likely followed up on the depth chart by young quarterbacks Tyler Stewart and Dante Mayes. After Fajardo moves on, Fralick would be a redshirt freshman in an open competition for the starting job against the likes of Stewart and Mayes. From there who knows how Fralick could develop. He could be the first local quarterback to start for the Wolf Pack since the Jeff Rowe era in the mid 2000s.

For highlight tape click here.

DT Kalei Meyer - 6-2/265

The Tampa 2 defense requires two main things from the defensive line. One, a dominant pass rush that allows linebackers to drop into coverage and not blitz, a main component to the Tampa 2. Secondly, a dominant nose tackle that demands double teams allowing the linebackers to remain free to make tackles in the run game. Enter 2* recruit (according to Scout.com) Meyer a defensive tackle from Hawaii. Meyer has the ability to play immediately if he can pick up quickly on the defensive schemes. The biggest issue that could hold Meyer back is his size and strength. While Meyer won't be an every down lineman in his freshman year, the lack of depth and possibly even lack of exceptional talent on the current defensive line, led by Jordan Hanson and Rykeem Yates, could lead him to see the field in 2014. By the time he is a junior and senior he very well could be an every down defensive lineman. After hitting the weight room and building up his muscle mass, Meyer could be a player to watch the next four year.

For highlight tape click here.

S Asauni Rufus - 6-0/190

One of the most impressive players that will join the Nevada Wolf Pack team is Rufus, a 3* recruit according to Scout. In high school Rufus primarily played quarterback in the triple option offense, but will be moved to safety by Nevada coaches. Rufus already has the size to play safety in college so his body will not be an issue. His biggest concern will be adjusting to a position he may not be one hundred percent comfortable playing quiet yet. Again, like most of these recruits, he will likely redshirt to gain practice experience before playing in games. Players he will compete with in 2015 for playing time, and even a starting position will be Julian Brooks, a highly touted recruit two years ago, and Kaodi Dike, who started a few games in 2013 as a freshman.

For highlight tape click here.

DE Korey Rush - 6-3/235

Take a look at Nevada's current roster at defensive end going into the 2014 season. And at first you may be impressed with a core group consisting of senior Brock Hekking, and juniors Rykeem Yates, Ian Seau, and Lenny Jones. But then you see that almost all the productive players will be gone in two years or less. Looking for a freshman to immediately make an impact and develop into a star once these other players leave, coach Polian found defensive end Rush. Rush is a player that will play immediately and play behind those aforementioned returners. The 3* recruit, according to Scout, was originally committed to Arizona State but after injuring himself early in his senior season, the Sun Devils wanted to greyshirt him, but Rush wanted to play immediately and the Wolf Pack will give him that chance.

For highlight tape click here.

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