Kent State football signing class of 2018

The “National Signing Day has lost its luster” rhetoric is untrue in Kent, Ohio. Sean Lewis was hired as Kent State’s head coach the week of the early signing period in December where only three players submitted national letters of intent. Two of them were Lewis recruits.

Now, just seven weeks later, that class of three has grown to 20. According to 247sports.com, Kent State went from the signing class ranked dead last in the Mid-American Conference to No. 5 on the list with an average composite score of 0.7960. It also has a lot of big splashes who could be early contributors to their new team.

Some of these players were committed elsewhere during their recruiting processes. Defensive end Connor Parks was initially set on going to Purdue, defensive tackle Elijah Ratliff was once a Marshall commit and offensive lineman Julian Sams was committed to Old Dominion.

Defense

Probably the biggest splash of the day at Kent State is Jeremiah Salaam. When’s the last time Kent State was able to bring on a player that also had offers from Oklahoma, Ohio State, Notre Dame, Missouri, Ole Miss and other Power 5 schools?

Salaam is a safety from Frostproof, Fla. that’s listed on ESPN’s Top 300 list. As of this writing, Salaam is a two-star recruit by 247sports.com’s composite rating, but this could change in the days to come.

Capone Blue and Montre Miller are also good pieces to stock up on for Kent State’s secondary at cornerback.

Parks and Ratliff are also big adds out of high school. Will Burns will be another add for Kent State’s defensive line.

Offense

Ervin “Woody” Barrett is a dual-threat quarterback out of Copiah-Lincoln CC and is a bounceback from Auburn. With his experience, speed and strength, he’s likely to be pushing for playing time this year. He has three years of eligibility. Another three-star, dual-threat quarterback who signed today is Marquez Glover. Both quarterbacks are from Orlando, Fla. and Ocala, Fla, respectively.

Along with Barrett, Jo-El Shaw should be a solid, three-year option out of the backfield. Shaw was a running back that was recruited to go to Syracuse, but ended up going to Lackawanna CC for his freshman season.

Meet Kent State’s current signing class. Names in bold have been officially added Wednesday. Names in italics indicate junior college transfers. Asterisks (**) means that that player is currently enrolled. Ampersands (&) indicate those who join the team as walk-ons. The pound sign (#) indicates those who join the team as blueshirts.

Total signees (early signees): 20 (4)

** Woody Barrett (@WoodyB_1) — quareterback; Orlando, Fla.; Copiah-Lincoln CC, Auburn

Capone Blue (@wavyboy_) — cornerback; Murrieta, Calif.; Murrieta Mesa

William Burns (@williamburnsII) — defensive line; Erie, Pa.; Cathedral Prep

& Dalton Dechristopher (@_dalton12) — kicker; Orlando, Fla.; Bishop Moore

Craig Elmore (@CraigElmore_25) — running back; Chicago, Ill.; Phillips

Marquez Glover (@HopkinsMarquez) — quarterback; Ocala, Fla.; Vanguard

& Jack Halper (@HalperJack) — long snapper; New Lenox, Ill.; Providence Catholic

Matthew Harmon (@Harm0073) — linebacker; Gibralter, Mich.; Carlson

Daniel Johnson (@djohnson0603) — tight end; London, Ontario; Catholic Central

& Franklin Lama (@franklin_lama8) — long snapper; Madison Heights, Mich.; Bishop Foley

Lonkevious “Keke” McFadden (@ChiefKevious) — wide receiver; Pahokee, Fla.; Pahokee

Isaiah McKoy (@ZAEGO6IX) — wide receiver; Norcross, Ga.; Norcross

Connor Parks (@9connorparks) — defensive end; Orlando, Fla.; Oak Ridge

Elijah Ratliff (@eratliff44) — defensive tackle; Reynoldsburg, Ohio; Reynoldsburg

Ishmael Robinson (@ishmael_711) — linebacker; Washington D.C.; Woodson

Jeremiah Salaam (@Jeremiahsalaam) — safety; Frostproof, Fla.; Frostproof

Julian Sams (@AyyJuliann) — offensive line; Bealeton, Va.; Liberty

Jo-El Shaw (HesLikeDat7) — running back; Pittsburgh, Pa.; Lackawanna CC

Matthew Trickett (@matt_trickett2) — kicker/punter; Cleveland, Ohio; St. Ignatius

Zach Whaley (@Zach_Whaley_) — offensive line; Prior Lake, Minn.; Prior Lake

Javaughn Williams (@8jayyb) — wide receiver; Cleveland, Ohio; John Hays

Mark Williams (@FooWilliams1) — tight end; Ashburn, Va.; Stone Bridge

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