Head coach Sonny Lubick will announce CSU's recruiting class today for the 2006 season.
At 7 a.m. high school seniors can sign with the college football program they decide to attend. Lubick is expected to announce 23 players from across the country that will make up the new class.
The top three-rated prospects for the 2006 class are safety Michael Johnson, center Brian Lepak and outside linebacker Rick Brewer.
Johnson is a three-sport athlete from Cypress Bay High School in Weston, Fla. and is expected to help fill the vacancy of departed seniors Travis Garcia and Miles Kochevar.
ESPN.com ranks Lepak as the sixth highest-rated center in the country. The big man has played all five positions on the offensive line and is an honor student at Claremore High School in Oklahoma.
Brewer, who originally committed to CU, is the highest rated in-state prospect recruited by the Rams. Brewer attended Mullen High School in Denver and is the teammate of fellow recruit, safety Josh Dorsey.
Two quarterbacks are included in this year's recruiting class. Arvada West's Sean McDougal, brother of former Ram's Kevin and Matt McDougal, and Nick Neuenfeldt will provide new dimensions to the offense in upcoming seasons. Both players follow the Bradlee Van Pelt school of thought – scramble first, throw second.
"Neuenfeldt is the Van Pelt type," said Joel Cantalamessa, director of Ramnation.com. "He's really athletic, they're just going to try to get him on the field," said Cantalamessa, alluding to the fact the Rams may try to use Neuenfeldt at the tight end position as well.
Tailback John Mosure, who attends Columbus High School in Miami, Fla., will compete for a position in the backfield. Despite a 5'10'' frame, Mosure weighs in at 200 pounds and is a physical, downhill runner.
Following the success of sophomore Kory Sperry at the H-back position over the past two seasons, the Rams added two new recruits who could play a similar position. Grant Detwiler from Tulsa, Okla., and Cory Macon from Anchorage, Alaska will fight for time on the field.
The only wide receiver recruit this year is Brett Willis, a kick returner/receiver from California who is a persistent receiver with qualities similar to former Bronco Ed McCaffery.
The Rams' main focus this offseason was to beef up their offensive line, evident by the addition of four new linemen: Lepak, Mark Starr, Marvin Arnold and Ryan Griffith.
"Sonny really looked at his roster for a weak spot and found one at the offensive line," Cantalamessa said. "But he went out and filled the holes in the lineup."
Out of all the defensive positions in this year's class, linebackers have the most incoming quality. Along with Brewer, the team is adding pass rushing specialists Mike Maracle and Zac Pauga, safety turned linebacker Nick Eaton and run stopper Patrick Massey.
Linebacker Anthony Jones from Tampa, Fla., will also join the Ram defense.
"Jones was a last-second recruit by the Rams," Cantalamessa said. "In all, the video I've seen on this guy though, he looks like a monster."
The defensive backfield adds three recruits, including the top recruit in this year's class in Johnson. In addition to Johnson, Brewer and cornerback DeAngelo Wilkinson are also joining the Rams.
"There are definitely intriguing guys in this year's class," Cantalamessa said.
Lubick will announce the official list at a news conference today at 3 p.m. in the McGraw Center auditorium.
Mike Donovan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org