COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMOX)— While the rest of the University of Missouri is celebrating the announcement of a third consecutive snow day, Coach Gary Pinkel and the Missouri Tigers welcomed 17 new players to the football program on Wednesday. Headlining the 2011 recruiting class include nine players from the State of Texas, QB Corbin Berkstresser, and JUCO transfer Sheldon Richardson.
Even though Richardson, a graduate of Gateway Tech, was the focus a year ago, he will officially be part of this class. Along with signing top in-state recruits, Missouri continues to do well in Texas where the football pool of talent is infinite.
According to Rivals.com, Missouri’s 2011 class was ranked 45th. Though the ranking appears low, that is only due to the size of the class. Most programs listed at top of those rankings signed 4-6 players more. If the quantity of the class is ignored, Missouri would receive a higher ranking due to the quality of the recruits.
The recruits from Missouri may not make immediate impacts on the team, but will give depth on the offensive side of the ball. QB Corbin Berkstresser (6-3, 220 lbs.), out of Lee Summit High, is another pro-style QB that received encouraging reports from scouts. Brandon Hannah (6-3, 235 lbs.), a native of St. Louis from Chaminade High, has to be most intriguing story in the 2011 class. After playing only his freshman year, Hannah was sidelined by injuries for the past three seasons, yet, the Tigers still wanted him. Finally, WR Wesley Leftwich (6-2, 200 lbs.), a Columbia native out of Hickman, is a solid receiver with excellent speed.
“This is always an exciting day for our program and for these newest members of our family at Mizzou”, said Head Coach Gary Pinkel. “We feel very good that this group addresses our biggest needs on the football field, but just as importantly, they are high-quality young men who will represent our program and this University the right way,” he said.
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