This is a large recruiting class. It’s in keeping with the large number of players graduating and moving on. I recall a coach saying that they expected to lose 40 players from 2015. That’s not unusual.
The typical attrition rate from one year to the next among OUA football teams is 40%. So, with Guelph maintaining a roster of approximately 100 players it sounds right on the money.
As for the actual size of the recruiting class, I heard the number 41 mentioned but I actually have 44 players on my list of 2016 recruits. We do know for a fact that 31 incoming recruits attended the Meet the Team event and Family Luncheon at the end of May because this story on the event shares that number. And much more.
There are several different ways to break down the numbers.
What positions do they play?
Special Teams 1
* This breakdown is sort of arbitrary on my part because there truly are half a dozen recruits who could play on either side of the ball but this is my best guess at this time.
The offensive recruits include …
8 Offensive Linemen – Coulter Woodmansey, Spencer Andrews, Ben Petrie, Nathan Monk, Matt Kryszatalowicz, Brandon Eddie, Benjamin Favot, Xave Warner
10 Receivers – Matt Creelman, Jack Gelbart, Devin Condlin, Michael Casciano, Keysean Powell, Kian Schaffer-Baker, Nick Mirijelllo, Jordan Terrio, Matthew Bills, Michael Bresciani
4 Running backs – Patrick Pierre, Aksum Polk, Harry Robinson, Jason Richards
1 Quarterback – Zach Buchan
The defensive recruits include …
8 Defensive Linemen – Eric Anton, Justin Thibodeau, Devin Catt, Dewan Soyer, Isaac Melanson, Kevin Acheampong, Corey Flude, Matt Delmas
5 Linebackers – AJ Allen, Mariano Christiaans, Matthew Smith, Michael Adade, Alex Jafs
7 Defensive Backs – Graham Brodie, Malcolm Ofori, Sam Sheffar, Dionovan Grosbeck, Darius Samuels, Pierce Wallingford, Walker Breen
1 Specialist [Punter/Kicker] – Owen Warnock.
Where are they from?
Out of Province: 4
Note: I counted Nathan Monk as an Ontario recruit even though he has been at a Connecticut prep school for the past 2 years.
The breakdown by region:
Peel Region 9
Toronto, York & Durham Regions 6
Halton Region 5
Niagara Region 4
London & Western Ontario 4
Waterloo Region 2
Kingston & Eastern Ontario 2
Northern Ontario 2
Nova Scotia 1
Or, looking at it by type of institution:
High school recruits 36
CEGEP & Prep Schools 3
CIS, NCAA & CJFL transfers 5
The fact there are 5 transfers is interesting because it is a higher number than usual. All five of the transfer players are eligible to play immediately but they have varying amounts of eligibility.
Two of the transfer players [Buchan & Bills] have a full 5 years of eligibility. Delmas has 3 years of eligibility. Bresciani, who has already graduated from the Univ of Regina with a degree in Kinesiology, has two years of eligibility. Queen’s grad Flude has been accepted into a graduate program at Guelph. He played four seasons for the Golden Gaels and has one year of eligibility to use at Guelph.
How good is this recruiting class?
Canada Football Chat which is the only service that ranks CIS recruiting classes uses two different measures for evaluating them. One is a total measure of the talent in a class and the other is an average per player. CFC has Guelph in a tie for 3rd in the first measure and tied for 8th in the other. I think that overall, that puts Guelph’s recruiting class as the 5th or 6th best among the 27 teams in the CIS.
Keep in mind, rankings like CFC’s don’t take everything into account. An important question that always needs to be asked in evaluating a recruiting class is … Does this recruiting class meet the teams needs? I think it does a nice job of that – i.e. re-stocking the talent “cupboard” at critical positions.
The biggest recruiting needs, in my opinion, were … 1) defensive line, 2) the receiving corps, and 3) the offensive line. That’s exactly where the largest groups of recruits are. Four of the 5 transfers are also at those positions – 2 defensive linemen & 2 receivers.
Adding at least 1 quarterback was also important since there were only 3 QBs on the roster. I believe we got a very good one.