National Signing Day has grown in popularity in recent years to become the college football fan's version of the NFL draft.
It is the day when the official NCAA Letters of Intent are signed on the dotted line ending any and all speculation about where a particular high school student has decided to spend the next several years of his life.
Boston College Head Coach Frank Spaziani is coming off an 8-5 season that exceeded most expectations but still fell short of the Eagles' goal to enter the BCS Bowl mix, which has eluded them thus far in their history.
Even though the Eagles are a relatively young team, that returns a good amount of starters, BC needs to address some key areas, particularly defensive line and wide receiver.
The following slides will give you a breakdown of the newest Eagles that the fanbase will be cheering on starting next season.
Chase Rettig—San Clemente H.S. (CA)
The 6'3", 201 lb. Rettig (pictured) created a good amount of buzz after transferring schools heading into his senior year and was considered by Tennessee as well as USC.
His performance at the UnderArmour AA practices and game last month was widely praised and gives BC fans hope for the future that they may have another Matt Ryan on their hands.
He is already enrolled and will participate in spring practice, so there is an outside shot he can compete for the QB job right away if he impresses.
Josh Bordner—Century H.S. (MD)
A tall, lanky QB at 6'4", 185lbs, Bordner was a bit of a surprise signing for BC as he was offered and committed way back in June.
He is seen as a project QB and may be a few years away from contributing, which is fine for the Eagles considering that Rettig is also in this class.
Bordner has also enrolled this semester which shows his commitment to learning and getting stronger from the outset of his career--perhaps BC has found a diamond in the rough.
Andre Williams—Parkland H.S. (PA)
Williams (pictured) is seen as a powerful north-south runner who was projected as a possible fullback by some despite his 5'10", 200lb size.
His commitment in June was seen as a depth move, but now that former big-time recruit Josh Haden has transferred, he may get a chance to come in and contribute right away at tailback.
Tahj Kimble—Fernandina Beach High School (FL)
Kimble was BC's final recruit, but is also one of their most talented. The typical Florida player who gets lost in the shuffle, he received offers from Purdue and Minnesota but decided BC was the best route to take.
His addition to the backfield behind Second Team All-ACC RB Montel Harris (also from FL) gives BC great depth for the next couple of seasons.
His style is very similar to Harris' but he is also a good receiver coming out of the backfield so he may find himself on the field in passing situations often throughout his career.
Shakim Phillips—De Paul Catholic High School (Wayne, NJ)
Shakim Phillips (pictured) is considered to be the gem of the BC recruiting class, along with Chase QB Rettig.
A four-star player according to Rivals.com, the 6'2" 190lb Phillips is the type of playmaking receiver that has long been coveted by BC and will be counted on to contribute right away.
Shakim was sought after by many programs including UNC and Pittsburgh; hopes are high that the Rettig-Phillips combo will be lethal in a couple of seasons.
Alexander Amidon—Hotchkiss School (Lakeville, CT)
Amidon ranked in the Top 10 in Connecticut by the end of his senior season and is considered to be a versatile receiver. He is only 5'11", 179 lbs but BC coaches like his hands and route-running ability.
There is an outside chance at him moving to the other side of the ball at DB but BC needs depth at receiver.
Jim McCaffrey—Buckingham Browne & Nichols H. S. (Cambridge, MA)
What the 5’10", 191lb McCaffrey lacks in size he makes up for with quickness and tenacity. Known for being an all-out overachiever, his quickness may find him on the field as soon as next year contributing on kick returns.
McCaffrey also considered Stanford and Harvard but stayed strong with his June commitment.
Bobby Swigert—Louisville High School (OH)
Eagles fans should be thrilled that Swigert is heading to Chestnut Hill. Offered a chance to play by over 20 schools including Michigan, Nebraska, and Stanford, the 6'0", 175lb Ohio product is highly regarded as an excellent overall athlete.
What he lacks in size he makes up for in his ability to fight for the ball and his precision in his routes. The two-sport star will also be playing baseball for the Eagles.
Jarret Darmstatter—Barnegat High School (NJ)
At 6'4", 240lbs, Darmstatter possesses natural size for the TE position that will fit in with the normally massive BC offensive line.
His pass-catching ability is not in question, but he will need to develop more as a blocker in the years to come if he wants to be an every down contributor.
BC has filled this position very well over the years and Darmstatter is another solid addition.
Seth Betancourt—Saint Joseph's Prep School (Philadelphia, PA)
Betancourt is the type of bookend tackle that BC has been able to recruit and send to the next level in recent years (James Marten, Gosder Cherilus).
At 6’6”, 285 lbs he has room to put on weight and will be counted on to contribute in a big way as he was one of BC’s most sought after recruits in this entire class.
Andy Gallik—Brother Rice (Chicago, IL)
Gallik (pictured) originally committed to Illinois before changing his mind to head to Chestnut Hill. "I just felt that I owed it to myself to make sure that I wasn't passing up a good opportunity at Boston College. I honestly didn't feel like I gave them a fair chance when I made a one day unofficial visit back in the summer. Boston College was the first BCS school to offer me a scholarship.”
Gallik plays tackle at Brother Rice but at 6’3”, 290lbs he will move inside to guard or center at BC.
Aaron Kramer—Duxbury High School (MA)
Kramer is a local player with a strong heritage as his father, Patrick, played DT at Notre Dame.
At 6’7”, 275 lbs, he has the size that BC has come to be known for regarding its “O-Line U” moniker.
While he may not have been recruited heavily, he was offered a chance to play at UConn and the Eagles have done well over the years with local offensive linemen that sneak under the radar.
Jaryd Rudolph—Silver Lake Regional High School (Kingston, MA)
Rudolph is similar to Kramer in that he did not receive much national attention but will be expected to contribute in the future after a redshirt season.
BC is leaving options open on where to play the 6’3”, 270 lb. Rudolph, so we may see him at defensive tackle down the road.
Robert Vardaro—Phillips Academy (Andover, MA)
Vardaro is a player that lands right in BC’s sweet spot. At 6’5”, 305lbs, he has all the makings of a future tackle on the BCS level.
He will need a redshirt and some time to develop but expect him to be another bookend tackle for BC in a few years.
UConn and Vanderbilt were also in the mix for Vardaro’s commitment.
Harris Williams—Proctor Academy (Lynn, MA)
Williams had committed to Stanford before switching over to the Eagles in July. At 6’3”, 290 lbs, he has played on both sides of the ball and has some athleticism.
BC sees him as a guard prospect down the road, but he will be redshirting and benefiting from the time to develop his skill set before he works his way into the rotation.
Dominic Appiah—Cheshire Academy (CT)
At 6'5", 260 lbs, Appiah already has the size to play defensive end at the collegiate level, but the thinking is that he will more likely contribute at defensive tackle in the years ahead.
The former basketball star has only been playing football since his junior year in high school, but prepped at Cheshire to gain more experience before making the leap to college.
Defensive lineman are particularly difficult to project to the next level so BC fans will be hoping he exceeds expectations like former Eagle and current New York Giant Mathias Kiwanuka did several years back (Signing Class of 2001).
Kevin Pierre-Louis—The King & Low Heywood Thomas School (Stamford, CT)
A little drama ensued when Pierre-Louis (pictured) de-committed from the Eagles after the coaching changes in January of 2009. Luckily for BC, he decided to reaffirm and has been on board since way back in April.
After a productive high school career at both RB and LB, he will be suiting up on the defensive side in Chestnut Hill.
Expect KPL to be a factor in the linebacking corps which continues to be an explosive unit for the Eagles.
Steele Devitto—Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, NJ)
The Eagles went back to one of their strongholds by plucking Devitto from the top high school program in the nation (DBP won the USA Today virtual national championship in 2009).
He follows in the footsteps of former DBP top recruit and Eagle Brian Toal and immediately becomes the player with the coolest name in college football.
“Colorado, Penn State and Boston College were my top three, but Boston College is closer to home and the academics are outstanding,” said Divitto. “I also really like the coaching staff, and they’ve had a lot of success with linebackers there.”
C.J. Jones—Alexis I Dupont High School (Wilmington, DE)
Jones (pictured) played QB and CB at Dupont earning himself Delaware Gatorade Player of the year honors in 2009-2010.
At 6'0", 175 lbs, C.J. ran for 1,114 yards and 19 touchdowns to lead the Tigers (10-1) to the Division I semifinals, their first playoff appearance since 1982.
While, he will need some time to develop physically (read: put on weight) his athleticism projects well as a college CB.
Sean Sylvia—Cheshire Academy (CT)
BC "double-dipped" at Cheshire Academy in 2010 by signing Massachusetts native Sylvia, in addition to Dominic Appiah.
The BC coaches like his overall football skills as well as his work ethic and despite playing both ways at Cheshire, they expect him to contribute as a safety during his career at The Heights.
Dominique Williams—Brockton High School (MA)
A solid overall athlete and two-way player, the 5’11", 196lb Williams is expected to contribute at corner or safety for BC.
His versatility is a bonus as he is expected to contribute on special teams throughout his career. BC has had success with Brockton players for decades and Williams could be another one to add to the list.