Read the release from IU Athletics on six players signing their financial aid agreements to enroll early at Indiana in January. Per NCAA rules, IU head coach Kevin Wilson can now comment on the players because they have signed their agreements. Read what he had to say below.
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Head football coach Kevin Wilson announced six student-athletes have signed financial aid agreements and been offered admission to Indiana University. The six include offensive linemen Delroy Baker (St. Petersburg, Fla./Admiral Farragut Academy), Tim Gardner (Indianapolis, Ind./Milford Academy), DeAndre Herron (Avon, Ind./Iowa Western C.C.), quarterback Alexander Diamont (Los Angeles, Calif./Venice H.S.), tight end Jordan Fuchs (Middle Village, N.Y./Milford Academy) and wide receiver Dominique Booth (Indianapolis, Ind./Pike). Herron has officially inked his National Letter of Intent.
"We are very excited these six young men have signed agreements with Indiana," Wilson said. "We are glad they have signed and plan on having them enroll when spring semester classes begin on January 13.
"Last year, we didn't sign any offensive linemen. To get three mid-year enrollees on the O-line is very, very strong for us. It is important to land quality offensive linemen. We have shown we can develop and coach the line at a high level. Getting these three is a good start and we would like to add a couple more before Signing Day."
Gardner (6-5, 320 pounds), who is ranked the number three prospect in the Rivals.com prep school ratings, led Lawrence Central High School in Indianapolis to the Indiana Class 5A state title in 2012. He was a 2012 Associated Press first team all-state selection and named to the Indiana Football Coaches Association's Top 50 all-state team.
"Tim is an outstanding player we have recruited for several years," Wilson said. "We are happy to add another talented Central Indiana football player. He has been a part of successful programs at Lawrence Central and Milford Academy. Tim has the size and talent to be an excellent interior lineman for IU."
Read our story on Gardner's commitment here.
Herron (6-5, 330), an Avon (Ind.) High School graduate, spent two seasons at Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs. A 2012 Associated Press first team all-state selection, Herron was also named to the Indiana Football Coaches Association's Top 50 all-state team.
Delroy Baker is IU's highest-rated player in IU's 2014 class thus far.
"Our staff has recruited DeAndre since our first year," Wilson said. "He impressed us at our summer camp and we have known about him for a long time. DeAndre played at great programs at Iowa Western and Avon, and he is another strong and physical player out of Central Indiana who will be great for the Hoosiers."
Read our recent check-in with Herron here.
Baker (6-6, 290) spent his first three seasons at West Port High School in Ocala, Fla., before transferring to Admiral Farragut in St. Petersburg. He is rated the No. 33 offensive tackle nationally by ESPN.com.
"Delroy is a very athletic tackle prospect," Wilson said. "He was heavily recruited by several SEC and ACC programs. Delroy is a high character young man and a great student who comes from a strong family. His athleticism and personal makeup are what IU Football is looking for and we have every reason to believe he has a promising future."
Diamont (6-1, 175) was named the Western League co-Player of the Year following the 2013 season. A three-year starter, he threw for 3,501 yards and 47 touchdowns as a senior.
"With our offensive system and our staff's background we should always land top quarterbacks and Zander fits that mold," Wilson said. "It was critical to sign an elite quarterback in this class to complement our upperclassmen. Zander was very impressive at our camp and workouts. Coming from a very prolific offense at Venice, he is an excellent leader who will give us a strong run-pass threat. Zander is a potentially great thrower who can also make plays in space."
Read our recent check-in with Diamont here.
Fuchs (6-6, 230) was a teammate of Gardner's at Milford after attending Christ the King High School in Queens, N.Y. The talented tight end also starred on the basketball court, where he received over 15 Division I offers from some of the top programs in country.
Indianapolis wide receiver Dominique Booth is one of the top wideouts in the class, and though he has not yet committed to IU, he has signed a financial aid agreement.
"Jordan is a very athletic guy," Wilson said. "He was an upper level basketball player in New York City who fell in love with football. We got on him late and are excited to have him. With the departure of Ted Bolser, it was important to bring in a scholarship tight end. Jordan is a long, gifted player who has the frame to be a dominant blocker in the Big Ten. We believe he has the ability to be a complete tight end."
Read our interview with Fuchs after he committed here.
Booth (6-1, 200) is rated as the No. 2 player in the state of Indiana and the No. 32 wide receiver nationally by ESPN.com. Over his final two seasons at Pike, he recorded 99 receptions for 1,266 yards with 16 touchdowns.
"Dominique is one of the premier wide receivers in the country," Wilson said. "We have been on him for several years. From day one, we made a commitment to recruit the state of Indiana and it is nice to get another Indianapolis metro player who can help our program take that next step. Dominique is ready to shine on the national stage and to continue the lineage of great Indiana receivers. He is a tremendous student who is very mature physically and mentally. Dominique is a perfect fit for our offense, one which became the first in Big Ten history with five 1,000-yard receivers on the same team, and we can't wait for him to arrive in Bloomington."
Read our most recent update on Booth's recruitment here.
National Signing Day is on Wednesday, Feb. 5, and Wilson expects to sign the full allotment of 25 players overall.
"Every day we want constant and consistent improvement and these six players help us achieve that goal," Wilson said. "It is critical that we meet our needs with young men who fit the values of our program, and we are off to a great start. Our staff has done an excellent job and will continue to do so as we wrap up what we expect to be another highly-ranked signing class. We must follow last year's top-rated class with another one and we are well on our way to doing just that. We are building a solid and strong program and the future is bright for IU Football."
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