2008 Signing Class Includes 17 New Faces for Charleston SouthernFebruary 6, 2008
By CSU Sports Information
CHARLESTON, S.C. – Charleston Southern and Head Coach Jay Mills have announced the signing of 17 new players for the 2008 season. The offensive side of the class includes one offensive lineman, a transfer quarterback, three wide receivers and a running back. On the defensive side, CSU signed three linemen, three linebackers, and four defensive backs. The Bucs also signed one kicker in the 2008 class.
The signing class includes the following players:
OL – Terill Foote, 6-4, 265, Chester, S.C./Chester HS
QB – Augustine Toscano, 6-2, 208, Pico Rivera, Calif./El Rancho HS (Cerritos College)
WR – Terrell Brown, 6-1, 190, Charleston, S.C./Charleston Collegiate
WR – Alexander Neal, 5-8, 190, Miami, Fla./Coral Reef Senior HS
WR – Spencer Smith, 6-0, 195, Newnan, Ga./East Coweta HS
RB – Antwan Ivey, 5-7, 180, Gainesville, Fla./Newberry HS
DL – Dale Woods, 6-1, 254, Southaven, Miss./DeSoto Central HS (Northwest Miss. CC)
DL – Hunter Simms, 6-3, 285, Lawrenceville, Ga./Brookwood HS
DL – Kamalu Umu, 6-2, 290, Kapa’a, Hawai’i/St. Louis HS (Arizona Western JC)
LB – Okoye Manley, 5-11, 230, Sanford, Fla./Winter Springs HS
LB – Cornelius Sterling, 6-2, 220, Orlando, Fla./Olympia HS
LB – Andrew McKain, 6-0, 225, Tucker, Ga./Tucker HS (Air Force Academy)
DB – Henry Mitchell, IV, 6-1, 180, Douglasville, Ga./Douglas County HS
DB – Chris Kuzdale, 6-0, 195, Tampa, Fla./H.B. Plant HS (Milford Academy)
DB – Greg Tompkins, 5-11, 210, Arcadia, Fla./DeSoto County HS (Mendocino College)
DB – Mike Springer, Jr., 5-11, 190, Villa Rica, Ga./Villa Rica HS
K/P – Andy Brown, 6-0, 184, Port Orange, Fla./Daytona Mainland HS
A full description of each player can be found below.
Terill Foote is a 6-4, 265-pound offensive lineman, who earned MVP honors on his Chester HS team. He played three years at Chester under Head Coach Victor Floyd, helping his team reach the South Carolina State Championship game. Foote, the son of Teresa Foote was also on the basketball team.
Augustine Toscano transfers to CSU from Cerritos College to compete at the quarterback position. A 6-2, 208-pounder, Toscano passed for 850 yards and eight touchdowns as a senior. He also rushed for 750 yards and eight touchdowns. Doubling as a linebacker under Coach Willie Reyna, Toscano had 63 tackles and forced three fumbles. At Cerritos, he had 16 touchdowns, 1,540 yards and only four interceptions. He earned second-team all-conference honors at Cerritos, and was all-area at El Rancho High School, earning all-league honors at two positions. He is the son of Liz and Augie Toscano.
Terrell Brown, a 6-1, 190-pound wide receiver, comes to CSU from Charleston Collegiate, where his team won the 2007 South Carolina State Championship. Brown was all-region, team MVP, and elected to play in the Shrine Bowl, having played three years under Head Coach Kirk Lax. The son of Mark and Denise Brown, Terrell was also a member of the baseball and basketball teams.
A 5-8, 190-pound wide out from Coral Reef Senior High School, Alexander Neal joins CSU’s team as a sophomore having transferred from the United State Air Force Academy. Studying under Coach Frank Ponce at Coral Reef, Neal averaged 100 yards passing a game as a quarterback. He was the team captain and a four-year member of the varsity team having set the school records for most passing yards and most touchdowns in a game. Neal earned all-county honors and graduated with honors with a 3.6 GPA. He is the son of Freda and Glenn Neal, and his brother, Richard, played at Auburn University.
Rounding out the wide receiver class is Spencer Smith, who comes to CSU from East Coweta High School, where he was a three-way player under Head Coach Danny Cronic. On the offensive side of the ball, Smith rushed for 388 yards on 50 carries. He also had 20 receptions for 269 yards and seven touchdowns. On the defensive side, he tallied 48 total tackles, four pass breakups, three sacks, and one interception. Smith also had nine kickoff returns for 177 yards. The son of Roy and Dillia Smith, Spencer was the most valuable receiver in 2007, earning all-region and all-county honors. He was also a member of the basketball and track teams.
Antwan Ivey is a 5-7, 180-pound running back, who will enter the 2008 season as a freshman for CSU. Under Coach Keeler, he ran for 2,445 yards on 260 carries, averaging 9.4 yards per carry. He scored 31 touchdowns, and helped lead his NHS team to a 13-1 record and a berth in the state championship game. Antwan is a first-team all-state selection and, originally from Gainesville, Fla., was named the Florida Player of the Year. He was a member of the basketball, track and weightlifting teams. He is the son of Jowanda Booth and Antawn Ivey.
A 6-1, 254-pound defensive lineman, Dale Woods signed on the dotted-line for CSU, transferring to Charleston from Northwest Mississippi Community College, where he played for Randy Pippen. The son of Tammy Woods, he was an all-county and all-district selection in high school under Coach Chris Purnell.
Hunter Simms is a 6-3, 285-pound defensive tackle out of Brookwood High School, where he played for Coach Mark Crews. The son of Michael and Chelle Simms, Hunter averaged better than six tackles per game and helped his BHS team to an 18-6 record over his final two seasons. He was named to the Atlanta Journal and Coast Honor Roll and the Gwinnett Daily Post Honor Roll six times. Twice he earned Player of the Week honors and was named the Gwinnett Touchdown Club Player of the Month. Simms was all-county, all-region and named to the Gwinnett All-Star Team. He also threw the shot and discus for the track program, competing in the Walt Disney High School Showcase.
The longest trip of the recruiting class will be made by defensive lineman Kamalu Umu, a 6-2, 290-pounder from Kapa’a, Hawai’I on the island of Kauai. Umu will be a transfer from Arizona Western College after having attended St. Louis High School. In high school, Umu averaged eight tackles a game and tallied 11 sacks and 137 career stops. He was a named first-team All-ILH, and was the Defensive Lineman of the Year. He was second-team all-state in football and basketball, averaging 11.4 points per game on the hardwood. At Arizona Western, Umu had 57 tackles, one interception, 6.5 tackles-for-loss and 3.5 sacks under Head Coach James Pryor. Umu is the son of Marlo Alipalalei and Malidie Umu.
Playing defensive end, running back and linebacker, Okoye Manley joins the CSU squad, having played at Winter Springs HS in Sanford, Fla. As a junior, Manley recorded 58 tackles, improving to tally 72 stops in his final season. He earned all-district, and all-conference honors. The son of Beatrice and Erest Manley, Okoye was a member of the lacrosse, basketball, wrestling and volleyball teams, and is a member of the National Honor Society.
Trying to fill the spot left by All-American Jada Ross, who graduated after last season are a trio of linebackers.
Cornelius Sterling is a 6-2, 220-pound middle linebacker, who had 108 tackles, three sacks and four tackles-for-loss at Olympia High School in Orlando, Fla. The son of Dana Pace, Sterling earned three letters for former CSU coach Bob Head, who is the head coach at OHS. A Dean’s List member, Sterling was the team captain as well as the team MVP.
A transfer from the Air Force Academy where he played for Fisher DeBerry, Andrew McKain is a 6-0, 225-pound junior linebacker, who played high school ball at Tucker High School in Georgia. The son of Rick and Judy McKain, he had a combined 275 tackles, four interceptions, nine forced fumbles and 8.5 sacks as a junior and senior. He was all-state twice, and earned all-region and all-area honors as a senior. McKain was also a member of the basketball and baseball teams.
At the strong safety position, the Bucs signed Henry Mitchell, IV, out of Douglas County HS. There, Mitchell had 118 tackles, two fumble recoveries and an interception as a senior under Coach John Oglesby. He was named the 2005 Defensive Player of the Year on the team, and earned the honor for the county in 2007. As a senior, he was all-region, all-county, voted the captain of the team, and named the best linebacker. The son of Nobie and Henry Mitchell III, he was on the honor roll as a senior and was a member of the track and field team.
The Bucs’ secondary also signed Chris Kuzdale, who stands in at 6-0, 195 pounds, and comes to CSU from H.B. Plant High School in Tampa, Fla., having also spent time at Milford Academy Prep School this past fall. At H.B. Plant, he had 264 career tackles, 24 tackles-for-loss, and 12 interceptions, returning three of them for touchdowns. Two of his touchdown returns came in the playoffs as Kuzdale tied the record for interceptions returned for six points. His high school squad, led by Robert Weiner, won the 2006 AAAA State Championship. Kuzdale earned all-county, All-Western Conference and all-state honors, as well as the Hillsborough County Defensive Player of the Year award. Also a member of the baseball team, the son of Joanne and Robert Kuzdale hit .385 with six homers and 31 RBI, and was named to the academic honor roll two years.
Greg Tompkins also joins CSU, having transferred in from Mendocino College, where the 5-11, 210-pounder had 106 tackles, four interceptions, eight pass breakups and forced three fumbles. He averaged nine tackles per game under Coach Tom Gang. At MC, Tompkins earned All-Bay Valley Conference honors, and was named the team Defensive Back of the Year. The son of Cherita Battley and Gregory Tompkins, Sr., Tompkins attended DeSoto County High School in Florida, where he earned three letters under the direction of Coach Dan Talbot.
Rounding out the defensive class, Mike Springer, Jr., is a 5-11, 190-pound defensive back, who joins CSU from Villa Rica High School, where he played under Head Coach Rob Cleveland. He was a three-year starter at corner back and wide receiver, and spent time as a running back as a senior, a season in which he accounted for nine touchdowns and 34 tackles. Twice he was named all-area and was named Player of the Week four times, twice in each of his final two seasons at Villa Rica. The son of Tonya and Mike Springer, Sr., he was selected as the team captain as a senior. Springer also played basketball, averaging 18 points per game, and ran track, competing in the 100m dash, the 4X100m relay, and the triple jump. He is a member of the National Honor Society and made the honor roll all four years.
In an attempt to replace all-purpose kicker Nick Ellis, CSU has signed Andy Brown, who comes from Daytona Mainland HS in Port Orange, Fla. Brown, the son of Carey and Janis Brown, was 38-40 on extra points in high school, earning all-area honors. He was also selected to play in the all-area all-star game, and was named to the 2007 football honor roll.