Sports

Pack football prepares for season with introduction of 2010 class

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CSU-Pueblo's 12-play 70-yard touchdown-scoring drive at the end of the first half of homecoming game. photo by Lindsay Wolking
The Colorado State University-Pueblo football team has announced its recruiting class for the upcoming 2010 season.

The class that includes 45 new signees is anchored by five recruits who are currently ranked as Division I prospects by national football recruiting Web sites.

“We have a class that really emphasizes speed and skill aspect, where we feel like we needed to fill some voids,” said coach John Wristen.

The ThunderWolves will look to fill voids left by outside linebacker Chase Vaughn who led the team in sacks and tackles for loss, quarterback Colin Clancy who led the team in passing yards, and receiver Augustine Agyei who led the team in both receptions and receiving yards. All players have already exercised their four years of eligibility.

“This year we looked to address spots on the defensive line and the secondary. Our biggest emphasis was trying to recruit guys who can flat out run and compete at a high level,” Wristen said.

As the Pack football team looks to establish its roots, the coaching staff has looked to both Pueblo and Colorado Springs for talent.

“We pride ourselves on trying to evaluate our home area and then branch out,” Wristen said. “There better not be a guy that signs somewhere else that we didn’t evaluate.’

Prep players from both Pueblo and Colorado Springs garnered the attention of the CSU-Pueblo coaching staff, including Josh Sandoval, a receiver from Pueblo East High School, who was able to set the Pueblo city record for most receiving yards in a season.

Tight end Trent Thompson from Pueblo Central High School, offensive lineman Austin Payne and defensive lineman Ethan Ward from Pueblo West High School, specialist Spencer Torrez from Pueblo East High School, and defensive back Alec Hernandez from Dolores Huerta Prep high school round out the Pueblo signees.

As the team branched out from the Southern Colorado area to find more talent, five players who were ranked as Division I prospects by national football recruiting Web sites, including Scout.com and Rivals.com, signed with the ThunderWolves.

Defensive end Beau Martin, quarterback Jake Johnson, quarterback Ross Dausin, defensive back Blake Johnson and receiver Deontrae Cooper were all ranked as Division I prospects.

“When you go 7-4 your second year and put it all together, you add solidity to what you’re talking about,” Wristen said. “We’ve got a program with a bunch of kids who are buying into what we are trying to teach and be about.”