Football announces 2013 signing day recruits

For Release: (Immediately: Feb. 6, 2013, updated 5/15/2013)

Springfield, Mo. – Evangel University football has announced their first set of signees in the 2013 recruiting class.

“I’m very proud of the effort that our whole team has put into recruiting this year’s class,” said head football coach Brenton Illum, who will enter his fourth season leading the Crusaders next year.  “From the coaches, to our alumni, to our current team and the admissions department…this recruiting season has been a tremendous success.  We set out to sign 25 guys by the signing day that we believed would be great fits and whose potential will allow us to compete for a national championship. Signing this group of guys is a testament to the work that our team has done and God’s favor on that work.”

Among Evangel’s signees is the Lebanon running back Brock West. West was the Offensive Player of the Year in the Ozark Conference and helped the Yellowjackets to a 9-2 record and a co-conference championship.  He was a first team All-State selection in Class 5 rushing for 2,080 yards last season and 32 touchdowns in 11 games.

“Brock is such a pleasure to watch,” said Illum. “He plays the game hard and he is worthy of all of the recognition that he’s gotten in the area this year.  We’ve been recruiting him a long time and I’m very proud that he’s chosen to invest his college time at Evangel.”

In addition to West, the Crusaders also picked up three other Lebanon players, QB Hayden Brackett, TE J.T. Dorris and P/K Andre Smith.

Evangel looked to fill needs at tight end and linebacker during the signing period.

In addition to Dorris at TE, the Crusaders also picked up Corey Murphy (6-6, 245, Willard HS), Chase Nugent (6-3, 220, Camdenton HS), and Donnie Thomas (6-4, 230, Arlington, Tex./Juan Seguin HS).

At linebacker, the Crusaders inked Zach Jones (6-4, 202, Rogers, Ark. HS), Dameon Phillips (6-1, 195, Crowley, Tex. HS), Zach Saffle (6-1, 190, Allen, Tex., Lovejoy HS), JaMarcus Smith (5-11, 198, Mesquite, Tex. HS) and  Cade Wilke (5-10, 185, Henderson, Ky., County HS) 

Additional signees include:

Alex Arellano, WR (Chino HS, Chino, Calif.)

Rudy Beltran, DB (Parkview HS, Springfield, Mo.)

Brady Burke, QB (Legacy HS, Mansfield, Tex.)

Darryl Calhoun, DL (Bowie HS, Grand Prairie, Tex.)

Dameon Cooks, DL (Bowie HS, Grand Prairie, Tex.)

Michael DeArmond, DL (La Habre HS, La Habre, Calif.)

Nathan De La Garza, P (Park HS, Racine, Wis.)

Benson Ebozue, WR (Bowie HS, Grand Prairie, Tex.)

Dakota Ennis, LB (Ames HS, Ames, Iowa)

E.J. Ewah, WR, (Ridge Point HS, Rosharon, Tex.)

Michah Foote, DL (Kickapoo HS, Springfield, Mo.)

Dillon Harms, RB (Marshfield HS, Marshfield, Mo.)

Eric Herbert, DB, (Ovey Comeaux HS, Youngsville, La.)

Larry Hurt, DB, (St. Cloud St. / North HS, Eau Claire Wis.)

Kaleb Goodpaster, OL, (Marshfield HS, Marshfield, Mo.)

Josh Jacob, DL (Briar Cliff HS, Ashburn, Va.)

Zachary Jenkins, TE (Big Valley Christian HS, Ripon, Calif.)

Carsie Jones, CB  (Booker T. Washington HS, Tulsa, Okla.)

Trent Jones, DB (San Antonio Christian HS, San Antonio, Tex.)

Luke Kantola, LB (Turner HS, Kansas City, Kan.)

Wyatt Lehman, DL (Cascade HS, Cascade, Iowa)

Noah Livingston, CB (Public HS, Jefferson City, Mo.)

Austin Lynch, DB (Sarcoxie HS, Sarcoxie, Mo.)

Donnie Monroe, LB (South HS, Blue Springs, Mo.)

Cheyenne Moore, P/K (Mena HS, Mena, Ark.)

Chris Moore, WR (University HS, Baton Rouge, La.)

Devon Overall, LB (Monett HS, Monett, Mo.)

Jacobi Perry, RB (Irving HS, Irving, Tex.)

Justin Pflug, DL (Ottawa (Kan.) Univ. / Cassville HS, Cassville, Mo.)

Stone Phelps, P / K (Cassville HS, Cassville, Mo.)

Jonathan Rentschler, DL (North HS, Huntington, Ind.)

Devante Sanders, DB (Bowie HS, Grand Prairie, Tex.)

Brandon Staley, WR (Lighthouse Christian Acad., Springfield, Mo.)

Cade Stone, DE (Branson HS, Branson, Mo.)

Traa Strong, DB (Mesquite HS, Mesquite, Tex.)

Victor Valentine, DL (Narbonne HS, Harbor City, Calif.)

Tre Vance, DB (Parish Episcopal HS, DeSoto, Tex.)

Drew Williamson, OL (Lewis-Palmer HS, Monument, Col.)

Ryan Whitman, DL (Moorpark CC, Simi Valley, Calif.)

Chance Woosley, OL (Lighthouse Christian Acad., Louisville, Ky.)

Dante Young, DB (Pine Forest HS, Pensacola, Fla.)

The recruiting process continues at Evangel with several scheduled visits by prospective student-athletes pending over the next several weeks. Additional announcements will be forthcoming following commitments received from additional recruits.

The Crusaders finished last season 7-4, 6-3 in the Heart of America conference and ranked 23rd nationally in the NAIA.

For additional information, contact:

Kevin Kennedy, Evangel University Athletics, (417) 865-2815, ext. 7260


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