Jim Harbaugh read the signs and fully expected to attain Jordan Zumwalt, a four-star linebacker from Huntington Beach Edison in Southern California. The signs pointed toward Zumwalt staying a California kid, and as early as May, 2009, Zumwalt made a verbal commitment to the Farm.
Just last week Zumwalt reconfirmed that commitment. Unfortunately, both reading signs and taking someone’s word can lead to dire consequences. Just ask the Greeks, and the Trojans.
Actually, ask the Bruins because that’s what Zumwalt has committed to becoming.
The loss of Zumwalt is considerable, particularly to a division rival. However, Zumwalt’s absence on Stanford’s National Signing Day victory list shouldn’t diminish Cardinal fan excitement over this crop of new recruits.
Here’s a brief rundown of the top ten players Stanford will soon welcome to the Farm.
1. Blake Lueders—Defensive End
Four-star Indiana native out of Zionsville Community High School. Ranked among ESPN’s top 150. Fast off the snap and exceptional at weaving toward the ball. Massive young man who “fills up a doorway when he walks into a room” and “loves inflicting pain,” according to Barry Every of Rivals.com.
2. Devon Carrington—Safety
Four-star Chandler, Arizona native out of Hamilton High School. Ranked among ESPN’s top 150. According to Carrington via Scout.com, “I’m a rangy safety” who likes to “come up and make a play… I’m very aggressive.” Explosive speed.
3. Anthony Wilkerson—Running Back
Four-star California kid out of Tustin High School. Ranked among ESPN’s top 150. According to Max Mandel of CardinalReport.com, Wilkerson “might have the best combination of speed and power of all the great California running backs.” Best bet to fill Toby Gerhart’s shoes.
4. Brett Nottingham—Quarterback
Four-star Californian out of Monte Vista High School. Rivals.com’s Barry Every reports Nottingham is “built like Tim Tebow,” possesses “incredible touch and accuracy,” and is “probably the most physically impressive quarterback in the country on the hoof.”
5. Davis Dudchock—Tight End
Four-star Alabama native out of Oak Mountain High School. According to Maxpreps.com, Dudchock’s a “tough runner after the catch” with “outstanding blocking ability.”
6. Keanu Nelson—Cornerback
Three-star Arizona native out of Sabino High School. The Arizona Daily Star describes Nelson as “Southern Arizona’s most dangerous man with the football in his hands.” On his Web site, keanunelson.com, Nelson writes, “I take just as much pride in doing my job when I don’t have the ball as I do when I have it.” Team player.
7. Ed Reynolds—Safety
Three-star Virginian out of the Woodberry Forest School. Top prospect who admitted to paloaltoonline.com that he decided on Stanford over Duke, Virginia and North Carolina because of Jim Harbaugh’s three-year contract extension and because he saw them “play Notre Dame” and can see the Cardinal is “really on the rise.”
8. Dallas Lloyd—Quarterback
Three-star Utah kid out of Pleasant Grove High School. Not quite ready to challenge the impressive Andrew Luck, but on scout.com Lloyd claims to be a “great leader” who “can scramble well and make plays.” A dual-threat quarterback.
9. Barry Browning—Safety
Three-star Texan out of Everman High School. Scout.com describes Browning as a “fierce tackler with an uncanny burst.”
10. Cole Underwood—Offensive Guard
Three-star Texan out of John H. Guyer High School. According to ESPN.com, Underwood is “light for a lineman” and has “exceptional quickness.”