Welcome to the fifth post in our twelve-part recruiting breakdown series. Today will look at the #5 team in our rankings, San Jose State.
The Spartans have long been a sneaky recruiting program in the Mountain West, and after taking a step back from that last class, they bounced back with a class in the top half of the conference. Once again, they have filled their class with solid, if not spectacular, players who have a high floor. Many in this class are safe bets to be solid players, even if none project as a true star in this class. Furthermore, they were able to spread the talent around to multiple positions, including quarterback, linebacker, wide receiver, and running back. See more about this class below.
- 22 players signed
- 15 high school players, 2 JUCO players, 5 Transfers
- 15 offensive, 7 defensive
- 14 3-stars per 247 Composite rankings.
- Players with a composite rating over 85: 1
- Players with a composite rating over 82: 10
- Breakdown by state: 15 California, 1 New Jersey, 1 Nevada
- 247 Composite Rankings
- Overall: 86th
- Recruiting: 84th
- Transfer: 63rd
QB Anthony Garcia
Anthony is one of the quarterbacks in this class. He has a rocket for an arm and can make throws all over the field. Garcia makes quick decisions in the pocket and has a fast release when he passes the ball. He can also use his legs effectively when escaping pressure or picking up some yards on the ground. Anthony has all the skills necessary to succeed at quarterback and will push the others on the depth chart right away.
QB Tyler Voss
Tyler comes in as a quarterback after a productive high school career. He possesses an accurate arm with great touch on deep balls. Voss is comfortable in the pocket, has nice football, and makes strong throws over the field. He has a strong command of the offense and is able to pick apart the defense. Tyler should push for playing time early in his college career.
Transfer QB Chevan Cordeiro
The Warriors didn’t get one but two QBs with great potential in this class. Cordeiro has a cannon for an arm despite not being the biggest QB ever. He has nice touch on the deep ball and does a nice job throwing on the run while still maintaining accuracy. Cordeiro is also incredibly shifty and an effective runner, extending plays with ease. At the end of the day, he makes plays on the field. Another product of Saint Louis School’s Cal Lee, Cordeiro has drawn comparisons to former Hawaii QB Timmy Chang.
RB Jakob Galloway
Jakob is one of the more talented running backs entering the Mountain West in this recruiting class. He does a great job making a cut at the line of scrimmage and then blowing past defenders as he reaches top speed. Galloway has great vision with the ball in his hands to follow him blocks and makes effortless cuts to change direction. He takes good angles on his runs to gain separation from defenders and bounces off arm tackles. Jakob looks like he can fit right into the SJSU running back rotation potentially as soon as next season.
RB Viliami Teu
Viliami is another running back in this class the Spartans were able to secure. He is elusive at the line of scrimmage and displays his speed as soon as he gets the ball. Teu can make defenders miss with his shiftiness and can also run through them with his power. He does a great job keeping his feet moving and his eyes up, always looking for an opening to extend the play. Viliami can be a nice change of pace back early on in his career as he continues to develop.
RB Cam McWright
Cam is yet another running back in this San Jose State class. He is a bruiser at the line of scrimmage, bowling over would-be tacklers at the point of contact. Also, McWright can outrun players once he is in the open field. He maintains a low center of gravity which aids him in keeping his balance and keeping himself upright. Cam brings another element of talent into the Spartan backfield.
WR Cieonta Davis
Cieonta is a long, athletic wide receiver in this SJSU class. He has long strides and is an efficient route runner, which combine to help him break free from defenders. Davis has a wide catch radius and can make difficult plays over the middle of the field. He tracks the ball well in the air and adjusts his timing to catch the ball in stride. Cieonta has the potential to be a big-play wide receiver in college.
WR Kejuan Bullard
Kejuan is a two-way player who will be a wide receiver in college. He is a tall pass-catcher who excels on fade routes or jump balls, where his size advantage comes into play. Bullard is comfortable on the edge but can also line up in the slot to expose mismatches. He has reliable hands and a sturdy frame, which makes it hard for players to bring him down after the catch. Kejaun will still need to develop but should be a solid player during his time with the Spartans.
Transfer WR Elijah Cooks
Elijah is a wide receiver transferring from Nevada. He is a dynamic receiver, who has a knack for making big plays, partly due to his skill of making difficult catches in traffic or on jump balls. Cooks has a big frame and defenders have a hard time tackling him, allowing him to add yards after the catch. He runs routes well and knows how to get open to make a catch. Elijah has been one of the better wide receivers in the Mountain West when healthy and if he can stay on the field, he will be a huge asset in the Spartan offense.
Transfer WR Justin Lockhart
Justin Lockhart is another wide receiver who fits well in the offense that Nevada likes to run. He will slide in well as an outside receiver where he can make good use of his height and routes along the sidelines. Lockhart may be at his best on deeper routes, as his long strides allow him to gain separation easily and he is skilled at winning jump balls. In addition to this, he has good hands and sets up defenders well when running routes.
OL Jake Steele
Jake is a solid o-line player entering the fold. He stays low to the ground and explodes out of his stance to initiate contact. Steele delivers punishing hits in run-blocking, negating defenders’ efforts to break through the line. He is also skilled in pass-protection, displaying good footwork, and keeping up with the speed or rushers. San Jose State produces pretty good college linemen and Jake could end up being the next one at tackle.
OL Denaris DeRosa
Denaris comes into San Jose State as an offensive lineman. He displays impressive strength, forcing defenders backward and opening up big holes in the run game. DeRosa does a great job pulling on run plays and has no issue moving quickly once the play starts. He plays through the whistle and seeks out blocks once he into the second level after his initial block. Denaris spent most of his film at guard and profiles well there in the future as well.
OL Uluakinofo Taliauli
Uluakinofo is one of the better interior linemen entering the conference this cycle. He paves the way for running backs by driving into defenders and getting his lower body into his blocks. Taliauli has a nastiness to him and regularly pancakes the opposition and creates huge holes at the line of scrimmage. He reacts to the defense well, identifying who to block and how to change as the play develops. Uluakinofo can play center or guard, but likely profiles best as a guard.
Transfer OL Bryce Petersen
Bryce is a transfer coming in to boost the depth of the offensive line. He is a formidable player, with good football and solid technique. Petersen appears at his best in pass protection, where he uses his size and agility to neutralize pass-rushers and keeps the quarterback upright. His strength is a huge plus and he seemingly tosses defenders around the field to move them out of the play. Bryce should compete for a role right away next season.
Transfer OL James McNorton
James is another o-line transfer, this one hailing from Washington State. He was a two-way player in high school and is still transitioning to playing offense full-time. McNorton is physical and explodes off the line of scrimmage to catch defenders off balance. He is equally skilled in pass-protection and run-blocking and has an advanced understanding of his assignments on each play. James has all the necessary tools to succeed as a tackle in college when his opportunity arises.
DT Jairus Satele
Jairus was a late addition to this class but is also one of the most talented. He comes from a high school powerhouse and overpowered opponents with his strength and ability. Satele is tenacious and moves instantly after the ball is snapped, getting in the backfield with ease and causing havoc. He is a violent tackler and does whatever he can to disrupt plays around the line of scrimmage. Jairus is the type of player who will be hard to keep off the field his freshman year if he keeps up his current level of production.
JUCO DL Noah Lavulo
Noah comes from the junior college level in hopes to replenish the depth on the defensive line. He has the size and length San Jose State looks for in their d-line players, as well as the speed to get into the backfield quickly after the ball is snapped. Lavulo pushes past blockers and can outrun ball carriers to make a play on the ball. He is sneaky strong and when he gets a few steps for a running start, he can blow through blockers with noticeable force. Noah is versatile enough to play inside or outside but looks best at a defensive end position for the Spartans.
LB Justin Eklund
Justin is a solid linebacker recruit who the Spartans were able to land in this class. He excels at getting to the quarterback, in part to his plus speed that he features running back in a straight line as well as laterally. Eklund reads plays and displays good instincts, which allow him to flock to the ball and make a play before the offense can execute. He sheds blocks well with his strength and is a sound tackler in the open field. Justin looks like he can play in some capacity immediately.
LB Damonie Perkins
Damonie is part of a concentrated effort by the Spartans to restock the linebacker unit. He is a physical tackler to spends a lot of time in the backfield disrupting plays. Perkins flashes good game speed and commits to his assignment immediately. He plays well in zone coverage and is a steady contributor in defending the run. Damonie looks like he fits best at an outside linebacker spot and it won’t be long until he gets on the field.
LB Justin Stearns
Justin is yet another linebacker in this class. He is a proficient tackler who can cover a lot of ground sideline to sideline. Stearns is great in coverage, matching up up well with tight ends and receivers on routes thanks to his length and speed. He can also be effective as a blitzer wraps up well once he gets to the ball. Justin ability to fly around the field will serve him well as a WILL linebacker at the college level.
LB Jordan Pollard
Jordan was one of the last players in this class to commit but he is just as talented as anyone else. He sees the field well and it serves him well when he is called up to match up with receivers in coverage. Pollard is also skilled at lining up at the line of scrimmage to blitz or step up in run support. His versatility is a huge strength and he can be a playmaker all over the field. Jordan looks like a natural SAM linebacker who can play in coverage or run-support depending on the need.
JUCO DB Jaylan Lawson
Jaylan is the lone defensive back this recruiting cycle and he comes from the JUCO ranks. He covers a huge part of the field in the secondary and is fast enough to run down ball carriers no matter where they are. Lawson is a superb tackler in the open field and diagnoses plays well and reacts accordingly to make a play. He mixes up coverage, shadowing receivers or jumping routes when he is able to. Jaylan is being brought in to contribute right away and it appears he should be able to do that with little issue.
Team Writer Thoughts
“Those things can be all over the place,” said HC Brent Brennan on websites that rank recruiting success. “It really comes down to our evaluation and how we think players fit us. It’s more important to me how our coaches feel about a player.”
In relative comparison to Brennan’s past recruiting classes, yes, this class is his best, collectively. There are always hits and misses, and in this 2021/2022 class, it seems a bit easier to pick out the hits.
RB Jakob Galloway sticks out immediately, not just because he looks “great on tape,” but by also looking at all the other big D1 interests seeing the same thing. With DT Jairus Satele, it is always amazing to see such a big kid move with such quickness and power. There’s also a lot of middle-ground talent that could be great and look good on tape, as usual, but really, we’ll have to see how the Spartan staff development comes into play. The sleepers are also always interesting, where you see guys like WR Bullard and QB Garcia with every much the explosiveness and talent but are below the radar of the likes of Cordiero, Voss, and the big Nevada WR transfers in Cooks and Lockhart.
In all, Brennan and staff are doing well in keeping a working balance of experience and youth where the Spartans can get a very wide breadth of players contributing sooner than later.
Mike: Galloway, Satele, Eklund
Vic: Galloway (RB), Satele (DT)
Talented enough to play right away:
Mike: Galloway, Satele, Eklund, Voss
Vic: Galloway (RB), Pollard (LB), Perkins (LB)
Mike: Stearns, Steele
Vic: Bullard (WR), Garcia (QB)
Mike: Linebacker, Quarterback
San Jose State was able to restock its roster with a large amount of talent in this 2022 recruiting class. Those who underestimate this class are likely to be surprised when many emerge as core players in the next wave of talent for the Spartans. It would not be out of the question for a few of these players to make contributions in their true freshman season. Regardless, most members of this class are safe bets to outperform their recruiting rankings and become solid college players during their time at San Jose State.
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