Signing day tracker: New recruits join Gophers football for 2022

While 2020 has held so much upheaval with coronavirus, college football recruiting schedule went ahead as planned, and the Gophers’ 2021 class became official on Wednesday morning.
The Gophers went into the early signing period with 18 high school commitments and one FCS transfer. The class was ranked 26th in the nation and eighth in the Big Ten by the 247sports.com composite ranking. It’s the U’s best national rank in the era of internet recruiting sites dating back to 2002.
The biggest news — which would impact the class’s overall ranking — came early Wednesday morning when its top-rated player, four-star cornerback Avante Dickerson of Omaha, delayed his college choice.
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Here’s how the early signing period unfolded:
6:21 a.m. — Defensive tackle Luther McCoy from Fruit Cove, Fla., 6-foot-5, 290 pounds
Ranking: 3-star, .848
Notable other offers: Cincinnati, Arkansas, Baylor, Florida State
The Gophers said: “It’s the FIRST SIGNEE of day. All the way from Florida, welcome to the #Gophers @LuterhMcCoy5!”
6:23 — Linebacker Devon Williams from Dublin, Ohio, 6-1, 215
Ranking: 3-star, .870
Notable other offers: Kentucky de-commit, Michigan, Michigan State, Nebraska
The Gophers said: “The 2020 Ohio Capital Conference Defensive Player of the Year is headed to Minnesota.”
6:27 — Defensive end Austin Booker from Greenwood, Ind., 6-5, 235
Ranking: 3-star, .870
Notable other offers: Iowa, Oregon, Washington, Nebraska
The Gophers said: “@austinbookerr is going to bring some fire to the defensive line.”
6:31 — Safety Darius Green, Covington, Ga., 6-0, 190
Ranking: 3-star, .857
Notable other offers: Indiana, Maryland, Georgia Tech, Virginia
The Gophers said: “Peach State Pipeline in full effect. Welcome to the #Gophers, @green_darius33!”
6:36 — Receiver Lemeke Brockington, Moultire, Ga., 6-0, 185
Ranking: 3-star, .872
Notable other offers: Miami, Virginia Tech, Tennessee, South Carolina
The Gophers said: “He added himself to his high school record books, ranking second in school history for receiving yards (2,054) and touchdown receptions (25). Those numbers are coming with @LemekeBrocking1 to Minnesota!”
6:41 — Linebacker Jack Gibbens, Spring Branch, Texas, 6-4, 240
The Abilene Christian graduate transfer was brought in to provide leadership to a younger position group.
The Gophers said: “He’s totaled 258 tackles, 22.5 tackles for loss, seven sacks and five interceptions. Can’t wait to see you in Maroon & Gold, @johngibbens18!”
7:07 — Quarterback Athan Kaliakmanis from Antioch, Ill., 6-4, 190
Ranking: 4-star, .896
Notable other offers: Iowa, Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Purdue
The Gophers said: “Official. Welcome to Maroon & Gold, Athan! A top prospect out of Illinois, @aajk_23 is going to bring some staggering numbers to the #Gophers QB room.”
7:09 — Receiver Dino Kaliakmanis from Antioch, Ill., 6-2, 188
Ranking: 3-star, .855
Notable other offers: Kansas, Northern Illinois, Toledo, Florida Atlantic
The Gophers said: “Stacking the deck at WR. Maroon & Gold looks good on you, #TheRocket_18!”
7:13 — Dickerson, who is the Gophers’ third-highest rated recruit in any class, tweeted his desire to wait.
Dickerson wrote: “I would like to announce that I will not be signing along with my teammates. I am simply not ready to make a final decision that will impact my future as a student athlete.”
7:14 — Receiver Brady Body from Southlake, Texas, 6-1, 175
Ranking: 3-star, .859
Notable other offers: Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Utah, Kansas
The Gophers said: “All the way from Texas, @bradyboyd_ is joining an ELITE wide receivers corp.”
7:18 — Offensive tackle Logan Purcell from Annandale, 6-7, 245
Ranking: 3-star, .863
Notable other offer: South Dakota
The Gophers said: “The Minnesota Movers are getting better and bigger. Welcome to the Maroon & Gold, @LoganPurcell5!”
7:24 — Cornerback Justin Walley from Biloxi, Miss., 5-10 185
Ranking: 3-star, .864
Notable other offers: Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Auburn, Baylor
The Gophers said: “Keeping the backfield locked down. @JustinWalley_ was named Class 6A Mississippi Mr. Football and he’s headed to the #Gophers!”
7:31 — Tight end Jameson Geers from New Lenox, Ill., 6-4, 240
Ranking: 3-star, .868
Notable other offers: Iowa, Wisconsin, Northwestern, Purdue
The Gophers said: “Gret ready to put on that Maroon & Gold, @Jamesongeers_. You’re officially a Gopher!”
7:34 — Offensive tackle Cameron James from Chicago, 6-8, 280
Ranking: 3-star, .876
Notable other offers: Maryland, Michigan State, Missouri, Indiana
The Gophers said: “It starts up front. @Cameronjames87 is going to make the Minnesota Movers ELITE.”
7:37 — Receiver Dylan McGill from Mesquite, Texas, 6-1, 194
Ranking: 3-star, .844
Notable other offers: Illinois State, Grambling State, Tennessee State,
The Gophers said: “Headed to the bold north. We’ve got an ELITE addition to the WR corps in @DylanMcGillFB!”
7:40 — Running back Mar’Keise Irving from Country Club Hills, Ill., 5-10, 175
Ranking: 4-star, .893
Notable other offers: Wisconsin, Michigan, Nebraska, Iowa
The Gophers said: “Call him Mar’keise, call him Bucky, call him a Gopher. Named All State & Conference Player of the Year. @bucky_buckets will bring the heat.”
7:46 — Defensive end Deven Eastern from Shakopee, 6-6, 280
Ranking: 4-star, .891
Notable other offers: Missouri, Nebraska
The Gophers said: “Hometown kid playing for the hometown team. You’re officially in the Maroon & Gold, @EasternDeven.”
8:05 — Cornerback Steven Ortiz from Goodyear, Ariz., 5-11, 170
Ranking: 4-star, .895
Notable other offers: Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona
The Gophers said: “He led his high school to an undefeated regular season and its first playoff appearance in AIA’s Open Division Playoffs in school history. @1stevenortizjr is bringing that winning mentality to the Maroon & Gold!”
9:06 — Defensive tackle Jacob Schuster from Olympia, Wash,, 6-2, 300
Ranking: 3-star, .871
Notable other offers: Stanford, Washington, BYU, Michigan
The Gophers said: “He led his Washington high school to a state title and was named 2A Player of the Year. Welcome to the #Gophers, @Jsxchu!”
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