Feb. 1, 2006
FORT WORTH, Texas
-- In 2005, before putting together the nation's second-longest winning streak, capturing the Mountain West Conference title in its first year in the league, defeating Iowa State in the EV1.net Houston Bowl and finishing the season ranked ninth in the country, TCU coach Gary Patterson
and his staff had a recruiting plan in place.
One year ago - almost to the day - the Horned Frog staff sat down and put together its "need list" for the recruiting class of 2006.
The staff took a hard look at the senior class, which included a heavy dose of offensive linemen, a winning quarterback, two game-changing corners and significant depth on the defensive line. Before the excitement of last year's signing class had even worn off - and long before the Frogs' impressive 11-1 season - Patterson and each of his assistant coaches knew exactly what it would need in order to reload after the 2005 campaign.
The initial report out of Horned Frog Camp: Mission accomplished.
For 2006, TCU has put together one of its most solid recruiting classes in recent history - signing 17 players on National Signing Day. The Frogs also signed one midterm player to complete this year's class.
"We are extremely thrilled with this group of players," Patterson said. "We knew exactly what we needed. We targeted the players we wanted and went after them. This class is solid from top to bottom."
The Frogs signed five offensive linemen - including midterm transfer Ryan Sefton (6-5, 290) from Pearl River Community College -- and five defensive linemen, with Kilgore's Wayne Daniels (6-2, 230) at defensive end in the Texas Top 100.
"Up front - on both sides of the ball - was a high priority for this year's class," Patterson said. "It doesn't matter where you coach. It's impressive to sign 10 linemen - especially the caliber of players that we signed."
Other defensive linemen in this year's signing class include defensive end Clarence Leatch (6-3 1/2, 210) from Tatum, defensive tackle Cory Grant (6-1 1/2, 293) from Alief Elsik and defensive tackle Henry Niutei (6-4, 275) from Euless Trinity. Fort Bend Austin's Jerry Hughes (6-2, 225) was recruited as a tailback and defensive end for the Frogs.
On the offensive side of the ball, TCU signed linemen Marcus Cannon (6-5, 319) from Odessa, Marshall Newhouse (6-3, 317) from Lake Highlands, Josh Vernon (6-2, 295) from Irving MacArthur and Jake Kirkpatrick (6-2 3/4, 273) from Tyler Lee. The Frogs also signed tight end Evan Frosch (6-4, 235) from Midland Lee High School.
The Class of 2006 also has its share of skill. Signing with the Frogs are two quarterbacks, the Houston Chronicle's Offensive Player of the Year in Katy's Andy Dalton (6-2 1/2, 185) and Rockwall's Zack Eskridge (6-3, 195).
The Frogs inked two wide receivers: Southlake Carroll's Clint Renfro (6-0, 160), a Texas Top 100 recruit who played for two state championship teams, and Jimmy Young (6-1, 200), an all-state selection out of Ouachita Parish High School in Monroe, La.
In the defensive secondary, TCU signed safety Colin Jones (5-11 1/2, 205) from Bridgeport, and cornerbacks Alex Ibiloye (6-0, 170) from South Garland and Torrey Stewart (5-11, 175) from Holmes Community College.
2006 TCU Football Signees
Marcus Cannon (OL, 6-5, 319, Odessa, Texas/Odessa HS)
First-team All-District and honorable-mention 5A All-State as a senior... an honorable-mention All-District selection his junior year... ranked 59th nationally among offensive linemen by Rivals.com... also lettered in basketball, track and field and powerlifting... chose TCU over Iowa State, Kansas, Kansas State, Texas A&M and UTEP... has an uncle, Allen Cannon, who played football at Vanderbilt (1981-82)... born May 6, 1988... full name is Marcus Darell Cannon... parents are Ebbie and Holly Cannon.
Andy Dalton (QB, 6-2 1/2, 185, Katy, Texas/Katy HS)
The Houston Chronicle Greater Houston Area Offensive Player of the Year... a finalist for both Texas Football 5A Player of the Year and the Touchdown Club Greater Houston Offensive Player of the Year... third-team Texas 5A All-State and a 5A Texas Football Region 3 Player of the Week selection... ranked by Rivals as the No. 23 Pro Style Quarterback in the Country... named to Max Emfinger's National Super 100 Playmakers... All-District and All-Greater Houston... Texas Football Top 300 Players and a Texas Football Player of the Week on several occasions... Texas High School Football Top 200 players... posted the district's highest quarterback rating as a junior and senior... named Mr. Offense on numerous occasions by his team and the Katy Times... invited to the Nike Football combine, Rivals recruiting and EA Sports Regional Elite 11 quarterback workout... completed 63.4 percent (161-of-254) of his pass attempts for 2,877 yards with 42 touchdowns and 15 interceptions as a senior... led Katy to a 14-1 record and the Texas 5A finals... was 38-of-67 (56.7 percent) for 678 yards as a junior when Katy went 12-2 and advanced to the Texas 5A quarterfinals... threw for 10 scores with just two picks... a career 62.0 percent passer (199-of-321) for 3,555 yards, 52 touchdowns and 17 interceptions... also considered Memphis, San Diego State and UTEP... born Oct. 29, 1987... full name is Andrew Gregory Dalton... parents are Greg and Tina Dalton.
Wayne Daniels (DE, 6-2, 230, Kilgore, Texas/Kilgore HS)
A 2006 Max Emfinger All-American... first-team All-District and East Texas at tight end and defensive end... ranked as the No. 77 overall prospect in the state... totaled 65 tackles with eight sacks, three quarterback pressures and an interception... scored two touchdowns and blocked a field goal... also lettered in basketball... also recruited by Kansas State, Houston, Kansas, San Diego State, Texas Tech and UTEP... plans on majoring in business... born April 18, 1987... parents are Willie and Kim Daniels... Willie played football at Contra Costa Junior College.
Zack Eskridge (QB, 6-3, 195, Rockwall, Texas/Rockwall HS)
Completed 59.7 percent (141-of-236) of his pass attempts for 2,045 yards and 14 touchdowns as a senior... was 16-of-23 for 205 yards in a run-oriented offensive attack his junior year... chose TCU over Wyoming and Baylor.
Evan Frosch (TE, 6-4, 235, Midland, Texas/Robert E. Lee HS)
Named as a linebacker to the 5A Texas Football.com 2005 Super List... ranked 49th among tight ends by Rivals.com... also considered Houston and UTEP.
Cory Grant (DT, 6-1 1/2, 293, Houston, Texas/Alief Elsik HS)
Team Most Valuable Player as a senior... earned third-team All-District honors his junior year when he averaged 27 yards per catch as a tight end... mentioned as a "Player to Watch" in 2005 Dave Campbell Texas Football... placed ninth in powerlifting at the state championship his junior year... named to the "A team" for academics as a senior... also lettered in track and field... chose TCU over Tulane and Tulsa... born March 9, 1988... full name is Cory Alexander Grant... parents are Zachary and Sandra Grant.
Jerry Hughes (TB/DE, 6-2, 225, Sugar Land, Texas/Austin HS)
A unanimous first-team All-District 20-5A selection at running back as a senior... was also honorable-mention 5-A All-State... rushed for 1,412 yards and 19 touchdowns... totaled 215 yards receiving with three additional scores... was also first-team All-District as a kick returner... named to the Herald Coaster All-Area team... a second-team Greater Houston Class 5-A All-Area pick... an Offensive Finalist of the Year by the Touchdown Club of Greater Houston... selected as FB Austin's Offensive Most Valuable Player as well as garnering the Offensive Back-Receiver Award his senior year... voted Most Athletic in his Senior Class... a three-year letterman in football... also lettered in baseball... chose TCU over Arizona State, Baylor, Iowa State, Missouri and North Texas... born Aug. 13, 1988... full name is Jerry Ray Hughes Jr... parents are Jerry Hughes Sr. and Pam Hughes.
Alex Ibiloye (CB, 6-0, 170, Garland, Texas/South Garland HS)
Ranked as the No. 54 cornerback in the nation by Rivals.com... first-team All-District... placed third on South Garland in tackles as a senior... totaled 85 stops with five interceptions... added 12 pass breakups and a fumble return for a touchdown... had 15 scholarship offers from around the country... lettered twice in both football and track and field... has 4.5 speed... also recruited by Baylor, Colorado, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Oklahoma State and Tulane... born Feb. 7, 1988... parents are Alex Ibiloye and Tai Hazoume.
Colin Jones (S, 5-11 1/2, 205, Bridgeport, Texas/Bridgeport HS)
First-team All-State as a senior... was also District and County Most Valuable Player... totaled 1,800 yards rushing and 1,100 receiving his senior year... accounted for 37 touchdowns... Team Offensive MVP as a junior and senior... honorable mention All-State his junior year... chose TCU over Baylor, Purdue and SMU... born Oct. 27, 1987... full name is Colin Wyatt Jones... parents are Kevin and Sherri Jones.
Jake Kirkpatrick (OL, 6-2 3/4, 273, Tyler, Texas/Robert E. Lee HS)
Second-team All-District as a senior in his first year of playing football... a first-team All-State selection in basketball... was also the 5A District Most Valuable Player in that sport... lettered once in football and four times in basketball... also lettered in baseball and tennis... born July 7, 1987... full name is Jacob Daniel Kirkpatrick... parents are Scott and Becky Kirkpatrick... Scott played basketball at Navarro College from 1975-77.
Clarence Leatch (DE, 6-3 1/2, 210, Longview, Texas/Tatum HS)
A first-team All-District 16-3A selection... helped lead Tatum to a 15-0 record and the 2005 Class 3A state championship his senior year... recorded 17 sacks as part of 130 tackles his senior year... totaled six forced fumbles, four fumble recoveries and two interceptions... was the District Newcomer of the Year as a junior... also lettered in basketball... runs a 4.65 in the 40... also considered Houston, Michigan State and Louisiana-Lafayette... born April 8, 1988... full name is Clarence Clyde Dewayne Leatch... parents are Niel and Eva Leatch.
Marshall Newhouse (OL, 6-3, 317, Richardson, Texas/Lake Highlands HS)
First-team All-District 10-5A... received Offensive Line MVP honors as a senior while also being named Lake Highlands' Most Outstanding Offensive Blocker... a two-year letterman in football... also lettered in track and field as well as weighlifting... competed in powerlifting and earned a third-place finish in the 2005 championships... his father, John, played football at the University of Houston and was part of three Cotton Bowl teams (1977, 1979, 1980)... his cousin, Robert Newhouse, is a former Dallas Cowboy fullback great (1972-83)... has other cousins who played football at Baylor (Reggie Newhouse) and Rice (Rod Newhouse)... very active on campus at Lake Highlands... the Horticulture Society and Japanese Club are just two of his activities... plans on majoring in computer science... chose TCU over Tulane and SMU... born Sept. 29, 1988... full name is Marshall Edward Newhouse... parents are John and Sharon Newhouse.
Henry Niutei (DT, 6-4, 275, Euless, Texas/Trinity HS)
Tarrant County Area Top 50 selection... first-team All-District as a junior and senior... recorded 13 sacks his senior year while placing second on Trinity in tackles... helped key a Trinity defense that allowed just 16.6 points per game... also played tight end and caught a game-tying 5-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter in Trinity's overtime win over Duncanville... a three-year letterman on the gridiron... also lettered in track and field... his uncle, Vai Sikahema, played football at BYU and then eight years in the NFL... has a cousin, Steve Fifita, who just completed a standout career at defensive tackle for the University of Utah and was the 2005 Fiesta Bowl Defensive Most Valuable Player... also recruited by Houston, New Mexico, Tulane, Wyoming, Ohio, SMU and UTEP... born Nov. 24, 1986... full name is Henry Gordon Niutei... parents are Vini and Fehia Niutei.
Clint Renfro (WR, 6-0, 160, Southlake, Texas/Carroll HS)
A member of the Star-Telegram's State Top 100 recruits... helped lead Carroll to back-to-back state titles with a combined 32-0 record over his junior and senior years... earned All-State honors as a junior when he totaled 72 receptions for 1,454 yards and 23 touchdowns... had 48 grabs for 860 yards and nine touchdowns his senior year... comes from a football family... his father, Mike, was a TCU All-American wide receiver (1974-77) who later played with the Dallas Cowboys and Houston Oilers... also had an uncle, Mark Renfro, play football for the Frogs... grandfather Ray Renfro was an All-Pro selection with the Cleveland Browns and still holds the franchise record for career average yards per catch (19.6)... a great uncle, Dean Renfro, played with the Baltimore Colts... another uncle, Mitch Renfro, played football at Louisiana-Monroe... will also run track for TCU... was the state runner-up in the Class 5A 300-meter hurdles as a sophomore and junior... named the Dallas-Fort Worth 2004 Football Newcomer of the Year and the 2003 Track Newcomer of the Year... chose TCU over Stanford, Georgia Tech, Baylor, Texas Tech and Missouri... born July 21, 1987... full name is Michael Clinton Renfro... parents are Mike and Denise Renfro.
Ryan Sefton (OL, 6-5, 290, Gulfport, Miss./Pearl River CC)
Ranked as the No. 26 Junior College Offensive Lineman by CollegeFootballNews.com... helped lead Pearl River to 2004 state and national championships... chose TCU over Oklahoma State.
Torrey Stewart (CB, 5-11, 175, Kosciusko, Miss./Holmes CC)
Named second-team All-State and second-team All-Region XXII... placed second among defensive backs with 42 tackles his freshman year... was third as a sophomore with 32 stops... chose TCU over UAB, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Southern Miss.
Josh Vernon (OL, 6-2, 295, Irving, Texas/MacArthur HS)
Ranked 11th by Rivals.com for centers in the nation... was also a preseason No. 89 in the Rivals.com Texas Top 100... ranked 41st in the Dallas Morning News Area Top 100... first-team All-District and second-team All-Area as a senior... All-Academic 6-5A... also considered Kansas, Kansas State, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and North Texas... born Jan. 27, 1988... mother is Cathy Vernon.
Jimmy Young (WR, 6-1, 200, Monroe, La./Ouachita Parish HS)
First-team All-State as a senior... also received first-team All-District and All-Northeast Louisiana honors... totaled 83 receptions for 939 yards and five touchdowns... a two-year letterman in football and track... has an uncle, Oliver Lawrence, who played at LSU and one year in the National Football League... chose TCU over Mississippi State, Arkansas State, Louisiana Tech, Louisiana-Lafayette, Louisiana-Monroe and Tulsa... born Jan. 25, 1987... full name is Jimmy Tavaris Young... parents are Roy and Mary Smith.