National Signing Day 2013: Tulane football signing class

National Signing Day 2013: Tulane football signing class
HS Football
Wednesday, February 6, 2013 - 4:10pm

When Green Wave head football coach Curtis Johnson was hired last January, he announced during his introductory press conference that he would establish “The State of Tulane” when it came to recruiting. That statement proved to be prophetic with his second signing class as Tulane inked 18 local products among the 24 student-athletes joining the program for the 2013 season.

In addition to quarterback Nick Montana (San Francisco, Calif./Mt. San Antonio College), defensive lineman Chris Davenport (Mansfield, La./LSU) and deep snapper Michael Lizanich (Scottsdale, Ariz./Pinnacle HS) – who are already enrolled for the spring semester – Tulane signed six offensive players (4 linemen, 1 quarterback, 1 running back) and 16 defensive players (7 linemen, 4 defensive backs, 3 cornerbacks, 2 linebackers) to National Letters of Intent during on the NCAA’s National Signing Day.

“This is a special class, a dream class for us,” Johnson said. “This class is very impressive with the skill, the speed and the size as a whole. We really focused on the defensive side this year and increasing our numbers on that side of the ball.  We’ve added some big defensive lineman, some talented linebackers and added several standout players in the secondary.

“It was our goal to fill our immediate needs with this class and we were able to accomplish this. If you look at any position on the team we had needs and these newcomers not only filled many of these needs, but they bring an impressive amount of athleticism to our program.”

Headlining the list of signees is a quartet from the 2012 prep national championship team of John Curtis Christian High in nearby River Ridge – cornerback Richard Allen, running back Sherman Badie, center Brandon Godfrey and linebacker Eric Thomas. In addition, Tulane signed local defensive ends Quinlan Carroll (Belle Chasse, La./Belle Chasse HS) and Luke Jackson (LaPlace, La./St. Charles Catholic HS), defensive tackles Eric Bell (Harvey, La./West St. John HS), Tanzel Smart (Baton Rouge, La./Scotlandville Magnet HS) and Eldrick Washington (Harvey, La./Helen Cox HS), cornerbacks Jarrod Franklin (Baton Rouge, La./University Lab) and Parry Nickerson (Terrytown, La./West Jefferson HS), defensive backs Leonard Davis (Laplace, La./East St. John HS) and Sergio Medina (Boutte, La./Hahnville HS), offensive guards Jason Stewart (New Orleans, La./Warren Easton HS) and Chris Taylor (Baker, La./Zachary HS), offensive tackle Kenneth Santa Marina (New Orleans, La./McDonogh 35 HS) and quarterback Tanner Lee (Destrehan, La./Jesuit HS).

The Green Wave also added safety Tristan Cooper (Tampa, Fla./Plant HS) – who played as a junior at University Lab in Baton Rouge – along with defensive end Ade Aruna (La Porte, Ind./La Lumiere School), linebacker Nico Marley (Weston, Fla./Cypress Bay HS) and cornerback William Townsend (Miami, Fla./Norland HS).

Among the 24 newcomers feature are a pair of five-star recruits (Davenport as a prepster at Mansfield High in 2009 and Lizanich) and two four-star prospects (Montana as a prepster at Oaks Christian in 2010) and Taylor. Allen, Aruna, Badie, Carroll, Davis, Godfrey, Lee, Marley, Nickerson, Santa Marina, Smart, Stewart and Washington are all three-star prospects while Bell, Cooper, Franklin, Jackson, Medina, Thomas and Townsend earned two-star status.

Of Tulane’s freshmen signees, 12 rank among the Top-100 at their respective positions by national recruiting services: Lizanich (2 by ESPN.com, 5 by Scout.com, 7 by ChrisSailerKicking.com, 14 by 247Sports.com), Taylor (8 by ESPN.com, 38 by Rivals.com, 73 by 247Sports.com), Badie (17 by 247Sports.com), Santa Marina (23 by Scout.com, 30 by 247Sports.com, 34 by Rivals.com, 52 by ESPN.com), Godfrey (32 by Scout.com), Washington (47 by 247Sports.com), Aruna (48 by 247Sports.com), Lee (55 by 247Sports.com, 83 by ESPN.com), Thomas (69 by Scout.com), Bell (70 by 247Sports.com), Smart (81 by 247Sports.com) and Marley (82 by 247Sports.com, 167 by ESPN.com and Scout.com).

Nine other rank between 100-200 for their play: Davis (100 by 247Sports.com, 170 by Scout.com), Stewart (104 by ESPN.com, 108 by 247Sports.com, 124 by Scout.com), Nickerson (114 by 247Sports.com), Allen (116 by ESPN.com, 132 by 247Sports.com), Franklin (128 by 247Sports.com, 172 by Scout.com), Jackson (133 by ESPN.com, 156 by 247Sports.com), Carroll (138 by ESPN.com, 181 by 247Sports.com), Medina (143 by 247Sports.com) and Cooper (149 athlete by 247Sports.com).

“This is class is an all hands on deck group and I can see anywhere from 18-20 players playing in some capacity. Each player is big, strong, fast and physical and I’ve said this before and I will be saying it next year, this is not a redshirt program. I can see many of these kids playing right away for us.”

Season ticket packages will be available for purchase and renewal by calling the Tulane Team Shop Ticket Office at 504-861-WAVE (9283) or visit www.TulaneGreenWave.com. Fans will also be receiving information in the mail on the renewal process in the coming weeks. All 2013 Tulane Football season ticket holders in the Mercedes-Benz Superdome will have priority access to purchase season tickets in the Yulman Stadium (those with a history of supporting both TAF and buying season tickets will receive enhanced priority).

Further information on the new football stadium, ticket packages, parking and tailgating will be released later this spring. For the most up to date information, please visit www.TulaneStadium.com.

2013 TULANE FOOTBALL SIGNING CLASS

Name                              Pos.      Ht.         Wt.          Hometown/High School/Previous School
Richard Allen                 CB         5-9         167          Metairie, La./John Curtis Christian HS
Ade Aruna                      DE         6-6         230          La Porte, Ind./La Lumiere School
Sherman Badie              RB         5-10       190          Metairie, La./John Curtis Christian HS
Eric Bell                          DT         6-2         245          Harvey, La./West St. John HS
Quinlan Carroll              DE         6-1         216          Belle Chasse, La./Belle Chasse HS
Tristan Cooper              DB         6-0         175          Tampa, Fla./Plant HS
Chris Davenport            DT         6-5         330          Mansfield, La./Mansfield HS/LSU
Leonard Davis               DB         6-0         186          Laplace, La./East St. John HS
Jarrod Franklin             CB         5-11       194          Baton Rouge, La./University Laboratory School
Brandon Godfrey          C           6-4         255          Kenner, La./John Curtis Christian HS
Luke Jackson                DE         6-2         210          Laplace, La./St. Charles Catholic HS
Tanner Lee                     QB         6-4         192          Destrehan, La./Jesuit HS
Michael Lizanich           DS         6-0         220          Scottsdale, Ariz./Pinnacle HS
Nico Marley                    LB          5-8         180          Weston, Fla./Cypress Bay HS
Sergio Medina               DB         6-0         210          Boutte, La./Hahnville HS
Nick Montana                QB         6-3         200          San Francisco, Calif./Oaks Christian HS/Mt. San Antonio College
Kenneth Santa Marina  OT         6-5         320          New Orleans, La./McDonogh 35 HS
Parry Nickerson            CB         5-11       170          Terrytown, La./West Jefferson HS
Tanzel Smart                  DT         6-2         290          Baton Rouge, La./Scotlandville Magnet HS
Jason Stewart                OG        6-4         315          New Orleans, La./Warren Easton HS
Chris Taylor                   OG        6-1         315          Baker, La./Zachary HS
Eric Thomas                  LB          5-9         225          Meraux, La./John Curtis Christian HS
William Townsend        CB         6-0         190          Miami, Fla./Miami Northland HS
Eldrick Washington      DT         6-1         240          Harvey, La./Helen Cox HS
 

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