DEFIANCE, Ohio – Brian Sheehan was named the new head football coach at Defiance College on January 2 of 2012. Since that time, Sheehan and his staff have been working hard to put their mark on the Yellow Jacket football program.
“Our offseason goal was to establish a solid foundation for us to build on,” explained Sheehan. “Plenty of work was done with our current team through winter workouts, spring practices and team activities, and this first recruiting class is the other piece of the puzzle,” he noted. “We are pleased to announce that 67 new recruits will be joining the Yellow Jacket football program in August.”
The 2012 recruiting class is Sheehan’s first at Defiance, and will play an important role in how quickly the Yellow Jacket program gets where Sheehan envisions. Creating a foothold in the tri-state area was key for Sheehan and his staff, with an emphasis being put into building relationships with the strong high school programs in northwest Ohio.
“Establishing a recruiting base in our local area is important to us and I think it shows,” Sheehan explained. “It is no secret that we focused our efforts on the great talent located in the tri-state area, and certainly within the 419 area code.”
Of the 67 incoming freshmen, 15 are from northwest Ohio. The Jackets landed a total of 24 players from the state of Ohio. Another 14 players hail from the state of Michigan and nine more are from the state of Indiana. Defiance’s new group of freshmen have a combined 38 players from the area that Sheehan believes must serve as the foundation for his program moving forward.
The tri-state area will not be the only area of emphasis for the new Yellow Jacket staff. This fall Defiance will bring in 16 players from the state of Florida, continuing a long tradition of recruiting success within the Sunshine State.
“We continued to work through the pipelines long established here with the state of Florida,” continued Sheehan. “We hope to have more players from that region on our football team than any other Division III program in the country.”
Sheehan noted that the Yellow Jacket program also needed an influx of depth and talent. A strong class of linemen was one of the staff’s top priorities for the Class of 2012.
“We understand that the game is often won or lost up front, so we made certain to address our offensive and defensive line needs in this class,” Sheehan explained. “We’ve brought in guys who we think can break into the two-deep and push our returning lettermen.”
Defiance currently has 16 offensive linemen and 13 defensive linemen on board for the Class of 2012.
Sheehan expects the Yellow Jacket defense to be a strength of the program this fall, but restocking the depth chart was key for his first class.
“Defensively, we have a senior-laden unit that we expect to lean on this season,” he noted. “We have some incoming talent that will bring depth and competition at the defensive back and linebacker spots. I would not be surprised to see a few freshmen in significant roles as starters, or in our third-down packages.”
Despite getting a late start, Sheehan is pleased with the overall success he and his staff were able to achieve in his first class and believes DC was able to add a group of talented players who will add hard work and character to the program. The effort put in by Sheehan and his staff helped land a group of newcomers that will serve as the foundation for what Sheehan is trying to build at Defiance.
“We were behind the eight-ball a bit with a late start and a new staff, but no one used it as an excuse,” Sheehan said of the obstacles he and his staff faced upon their arrival. “Our coaches did a tremendous job establishing relationships with top quality student-athletes who love football and will be outstanding additions to the Defiance College football tradition.”
Sheehan believes the talent, depth, and character of his incoming recruits will mesh well with the talent he has returning in the upper classes.
“This is a season of change at Defiance College, no question about it,” explained Sheehan. “Realistically, every year you have a brand new football team. The challenge is always to mesh the established talent, traditions and ideas with the new personalities and enthusiasm entering the program for the first time. We are very conscious of that chemistry, which is why we were so specific about who we invited to join our football family.”
DEFIANCE COLLEGE FOOTBALL CLASS OF 2012
Jordan Adkins, OL, 6-0, 240, Goshen High School (Goshen, Ind.)
Adkins was a two-year starter at center for Goshen High and head coach Mike Cheviron. He is the son of Wade and Crystal Sowers. Adkins intends to major in graphic design at Defiance.
Jameel Allen, DL, 6-1, 185, Clay High School (South Bend, Ind.)
Allen was a three-year starter at defensive end for Clay High head coach Joe Szajko. As a senior, the athletic pass rusher racked up 37 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, and nine sacks. He also competed on the hardwood, garnering the basketball team’s Sportsmanship Award as a senior. Allen is the son of Cathy Allen and has yet to decide what he will study at Defiance.
Ryan Amspaugh, OL, 6-2, 225, Newark High School (Newark, Ohio)
Amspaugh was a three-year starter along the offensive and defensive line for Newark High and head coach Gregg Forsyth. In 2011 he was named to Second-Team All-Region II and Special Mention All-Ohio Capital Conference. In recognition of his talent and career production, the center was chosen to play in the Licking County/Muskingum Valley All-Star Game. Amspaugh also received the 2011 OHSAA Archie Griffin Sportsmanship Award for Newark High School. He is the son of Rodney and Mary Amspaugh and intends to major in physical education and health at Defiance.
Jake Andres, WR, 6-1, 185, Glen Este High School (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Andres was a two-sport athlete at Glen Este High. As a wide receiver head coach Zak Taylor, he ended with seven passes for 75 yards and a score in Glen Este’s run-oriented offense. During the spring, Andres was a starting pitcher for the Trojan baseball team and finished his senior season with a 2-1 record on the mound. Andres excelled off the field as well, earning scholar-athlete honors all four years of his high school career. As a junior he earned the English Academic Excellence Medallion. He is the son of Michael and Jeanne Andres and intends to major in sports management at Defiance.
Brodrick Barr, OL, 6-0, 270, Portland High School (Portland, Mich.)
Barr was a standout two-way lineman for Portland High head coach John Novara. As a senior he was named Second-Team All-Ionia County as an offensive lineman and also earned All-Capital Conference honors. Barr brings a winning background to Defiance, as his Portland High squad went 16-6 over his final two seasons, including a 9-2 mark during his senior campaign. Barr is the son of Rick and Jacqui Barr and he intends to major in medical laboratory science at Defiance.
Zak Bijarro Jr., DB, 5-9, 150, Jefferson High School (Monroe, Mich.)
Bijarro was a two-year starter for Jefferson High and head coach Marc Cisco. Bijarro started at both running back and defensive back for the Bears and was given the Coach’s Award as a senior. Bijarro is the son of Zak, Sr. and Kristina Bijarro and he intends to major in nursing at Defiance.
Kendell Bobo, QB, 5-11, 175, Taft High School (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Bobo waited patiently to get his chance to shine at the quarterback position, finally earning the starting job as a senior for head coach Mike Martin at Taft High. Bobo took full advantage of his opportunity, leading Taft to the state playoffs and a 7-4 record. As a senior, Bobo earned Second-Team All-Cincinnati Metro Athletic Conference honors by passing for 1,213 yards and 15 touchdowns. Bobo was also a standout on the diamond, earning First-Team All-CMAC honors as a centerfielder for the Taft baseball team. He is the son of Carmen Bobo and plans to major in sport management at Defiance.
Korey Boutell, OL, 6-2, 260, Hartland High School (Hartland, Mich.)
Boutell played three seasons at Hartland High for head coach Marcus Dukes. The two-year starting right guard was a part of Hartland’s 2010 team that advanced to the Michigan state playoffs. Boutell is the son of Don and Lori Boutell and intends to major in criminal justice at Defiance.
Raphael Braceful, DL, 6-1, 220, Southfield High School (Southfield, Mich.)
Braceful had a strong two-way career for Southfield High head coach Tim Conley. As a senior, Braceful racked up 30 tackles and nine sacks, while playing all over the Southfield defensive line. Braceful also started at guard during the 2010 and 2011 seasons and was a key figure in Southfield’s strong 2011 season, which saw the Blue Jays finish 8-4 and advance to the state playoffs. He is the son of Richard and Selena Braceful and intends to major in business administration at Defiance.
Josh Brisebois, WR, 5-8, 160, New Smyrna Beach High School (Edgewater, Fla.)
Brisebois spent most of his prep career playing quarterback for New Smyrna Beach head coach Lance Jenkins. As a senior, Brisebois passed for 1,538 yards and 11 touchdowns and piled up another 371 yards and four more scores on the ground. He is the son of David Brisebois and Maria Padula and plans on majoring in athletic training at Defiance.
Rayon Calloway, DL, St. Augustine High School (St. Augustine, Fla.)
Calloway was a standout defensive end for St. Augustine head coach Joey Wiles. The Yellow Jackets finished the 2011 season with a 10-2 record and allowed just 12.1 points per game. The pass rusher finished with 46 tackles, 21 tackles for loss and 12 sacks. Calloway was chosen to play in the North Florida Shrine Bowl after his senior season. He is the son of Tara Calloway and Leon Calloway and intends to major in business administration at Defiance.
Leroy Cheatham, CB, 5-10, 170, Meadowbrook High School (Richmond, Va.)
Cheatham played for head coach Troy Taylor at Meadowbrook and finished the 2011 season with a 9-1 record. Cheatham was a key member of the defensive unit, finishing his senior season with 55 tackles, five pass break ups, two fumble recoveries, and an interception. That production earned him First-Team All-Central District honors as a defensive back. Cheatham is the son of Lorenzo and Joyce Cheatham and intends to major in criminal justice at Defiance.
Tyler Collopy, LB, 6-0, 235, Tri-Valley High School (Dresden, Ohio)
Collopy was a standout for Tri-Valley High and head coach Justin Buttermore, earning First-Team All-Eastern District and Honorable Mention All-Ohio Division II honors as a junior and senior. In 2011, Collopy helped lead Tri-Valley to an 11-2 record and a trip to the state playoffs. His outstanding prep career at linebacker resulted in him being chosen to play in the Licking County/Muskingum Valley All-Star Game.
Jordan Dagostaro, DL, 5-10, 215, Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School (Scotch Plains, N.J.)
Dagostaro was a three-year starting defensive lineman for Scotch Plains-Fanwood head coach Steve Ciccotelli. The high-motor end missed half of his senior season with an injury but still managed to rack up 20 tackles and a sack. He is the son of John and Rachel Dagostaro and intends to major in accounting at Defiance.
Jeff Dibacco, OL, 6-3, 250, Northeast High School (St. Petersburg, Fla.)
Dibacco was a two year-starter for Northeast head coach Mike Jalazo.
Andre Doran, WR, 5-10, 165, Palm Beach Gardens High School (West Palm Beach, Fla.)
Doran started at both wide receiver and cornerback for Palm Beach Gardens head coach Chris Davis. As a senior, Doran and the Gators finished with a 9-3 record, advancing to the third round of the State 8A playoffs. Doran intends to major in business administration at Defiance.
Sergio Duboise, LB, 6-0, 200, Buchtel High School (Akron, Ohio)
Duboise was a two-year starter for Buchtel High head coach Ricky Powers. As a senior, Duboise finished the season with seven sacks, three forced fumbles, three fumbles recoveries, and five interceptions from his middle linebacker position. The strong campaign earned him First-Team All-Akron City League honors and was instrumental in Buchtel winning the Akron City League Championship. After ending his prep career in strong fashion, Duboise was chosen to play in the Northeast Ohio Thanksgiving All-Star Classic. He is the son of Helen Duboise and intends on majoring in athletic training at Defiance.
Dustin Fanson, OL, 6-4, 285, Michigan City High School (Michigan City, Ind.)
Fanson was a three-year starter for Michigan City head coach Michael Karpinski and started for three seasons along the offensive line. The Michigan City standout set school records in the bench (405 pounds) and squat (705 pounds) and was the heavyweight champion in the Northern Indiana Regional Weightlifting championships during his senior season. He is the son of Jeff and Jackie Fanson and has yet to determine what he will study at Defiance.
Andrew Feldhaus, DB, 5-10, 175, Steinbrenner High School (Lutz, Fla.)
Feldhaus was a three-year standout for Steinbrenner head coach Floyd Graham. Feldhaus and his Steinbrenner teammates finished the 2011 season with a 7-3 record. The safety finished his senior season with 75 tackles, six interceptions, eight passes defensed, and a sack. His strong senior campaign garnered Honorable Mention All-Hillsborough County honors and a spot on the Hillsborough County All-District All-Star Team. Feldhaus is the son of Rob and Nancy Feldhaus and has yet to decide what he will study at Defiance.
Javon Graves, DB, 5-10, 170, Martin County High School (Stuart, Fla.)
Graves started as a senior for Chuck Kenyon at Martin Country High and helped the Tigers finish the 2011 season with an 8-4 record, while advancing to the second round of the 7A State playoffs. Graves finished with 24 tackles from his cornerback position and also blocked three field goals and two punts. Graves was also a four-year starter at guard for the Martin County basketball team and earned all-area honors as both a junior and senior on the hardwood. Graves is the son of Bernard and Althea Graves and intends to major in sport management at Defiance.
Aaron Hall, OL, 6-1, 285, Ansonia High School (Ansonia, Ohio)
Hall was a two-way standout for Ansonia head coach Eugene Hoening. Hall was a three-year starter as an offensive and defensive lineman and racked up 63 tackles and 1.5 sacks as a senior. His efforts earned him First-Team All-Cross County Conference, All-Darke County, and All-Southwest District honors. Hall also earned All-Ohio Special Mention honors as a senior. He is the son of Shannon and Annette Hall and the brother of current DC player Adam Hall. He intends to major in criminal justice at Defiance.
Justin Harris, OL, 6-2, 270, Warren Central High School (Indianapolis, Ind.)
Harris comes to Defiance from one of the top programs in the Midwest. As a starting guard for Indiana powerhouse, Warren Central, Harris helped fuel an offense that averaged 43.5 points and 271.6 rushing yards per game. Warren Central finished the season with an 11-1 record, winning the Metropolitan League. Harris is the son of Earl Harris, Jr. and intends to major in physical education and health at Defiance.
Pierre Harris, LB, 5-10, 195, Rogers High School (Toledo, Ohio)
Harris was a two-year standout for Rogers High coach Randy Bartz. As a senior, the linebacker racked up 87 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and two pass break ups. His strong senior campaign followed a junior season that saw Harris total another 71 tackles, eight tackles for loss, three pass break ups and two more forced fumbles. Harris was named First-Team All-Toledo City and earned Honorable Mention All-Division II Northwest District honors, while being named the Defensive Player of the Year for Rogers High. Harris also flourished in the classroom, making the school’s Academic Honor Roll as both a junior and a senior. Harris the son of Michael Harris and Patricia Clinton-Harris and has yet to decide a major.
Kacey Harvey, LB, 6-0, 215, Bishop Luers High School (Fort Wayne, Ind.)
Harvey was a two-year starting middle linebacker for Bishop Luers head coach Matt Lindsey and helped the Knights to a 28-2 record over the past two seasons and back-to-back Indiana 2A State Championships. Harvey intends on majoring in business management at Defiance.
Zane Hayes, DL, 6-0, 235, Firelands High School (Wellington, Ohio)
Hayes was a two-year starting defensive lineman for Firelands head coach Mike Passerrello. Hayes finished his senior season with 46 tackles, five tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks to earn Second-Team All-Patriot Athletic Conference honors. Hayes was also named a Second-Team All-Lorain County and was chosen to play in the Lorain County All-Star Game. Hayes earned his team’s Leadership Award and was the recipient of the County Commissioner’s Award. Hayes is the son of Brian and Jodie Hayes and plans to major in athletic training at Defiance.
Travis Hunter, LB, 5-8, 175, Summerfield High School (Petersburg, Mich.)
Hunter was a three-year starter on the offensive line for Summerfield head coach Erik Johnson, and also started as a senior at linebacker. Hunter was a team captain in 2011 and racked up 117 tackles, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries. Hunter was an all-district player for the Summerfield baseball team in 2010 and 2012. He is the son of Howard and Nancy Hunter and intends to major in sport management at Defiance.
Napoleon Hutcherson, RB, 5-10, 190, Crystal River High School (Beverly Hills, Fla.)
Hutcherson was a standout running back for Crystal River head coach Greg Fowler. As a senior, Hutcherson rushed for 1,045 yards and nine touchdowns, while averaging 6.7 yards per touch. Hutcherson was also a standout in track and field, competing in the 200-meter dash, the 400-meter dash, the 4x400-meter relay, the triple jump, and the long jump. As a senior, Hutcherson finished second in the Florida 2A District 5 Championships in the 200-meter dash, long jump and triple jump. Hutcherson is the son of Napoleon and Edna Hutcherson and has not decided on a field of study at Defiance.
Jarrod Jefferson, RB, 5-9, 175, St. Francis de Sales High School (Toledo, Ohio)
Jefferson was a two-year starting running back for St. Francis de Sales coach Mike Blochowski. As a senior, Jefferson led the Three Rivers Athletic Conference by rushing for 1,175 yards and added nine touchdowns. Jefferson earned First-Team All-TRAC honors and won the Chuck Ealey Undefeated Spirit Award Scholarship. Jefferson is the son of Edward and Tammie Coleman and plans to major in athletic training at Defiance.
Wayne Kelly, DB, 6-1, 175, Concordia-Lutheran School (Fort Wayne, Ind.)
Kelly was a three-year starter at free safety for Concordia-Lutheran head coach Tim Mannigel. The defensive back finished his senior season with 32 tackles, three passes defensed, one tackle for loss and a forced fumble. Kelly was also a team captain as a senior and won his team’s Iron Man Award. He is the son of Wayne and Tamyra Kelly and intends to major in pre-law at Defiance.
Chris King, DB, 5-10, 165, Northrop High School (Fort Wayne, Ind.)
King played both running back and defensive back for Northrop head coach Tim Martone. King rushed for 255 yards and three scores as a running back. He also racked up nine tackles on the defensive side of the ball. King intends to major in sport management at Defiance.
Matt King, OL, 5-11, 235, Fremont Ross High School (Fremont, Ohio)
King was a two-year starting offensive lineman for Fremont Ross head coach Derek Tidwell. King earned Honorable Mention All-Three Rivers League honors after his junior season. He is the son of Tim and Amy King and intends to major in wellness and corporate fitness at Defiance.
Cody Lee, DL, 6-1, 245, Jefferson High School (Tampa, Fla.)
Mitch Lhamon, TE, 6-3, 215, Bath High School (Lima, Ohio)
Lhamon was a two-way standout for Bath head coach Chris Miller, starting multiple years at defensive end and tight end. He was selected as a Second-Team All-Western Buckeye League at both positions following his senior season, after hauling in seven passes for 129 yards and ending with 30 tackles, seven hits for lost yardage and 2.5 sacks. He is the son of Todd Lhamon and Katie Lunz and has not declared an intended field of study at Defiance.
Nick Lopez, RB, 5-6, 170, Defiance High School (Defiance, Ohio)
Lopez joins Defiance College after a tremendous career at Defiance High School under head coach Jerry Buti. Lopez was a standout on both sides of the ball and as a senior earned Second-Team All-Western Buckeye League as both a running back and linebacker. Lopez was also named First-Team All-Northwest District Division III and was an Honorable Mention All-Ohio selection as a running back. Lopez garnered Honorable Mention All-Western Buckeye League honors as both a running back and linebacker after his junior season. During his senior season, the talented running back finished the year with 1,230 rushing yards, 358 receiving yards and 18 total touchdowns. Defensively, Lopez racked up 84 tackles and two pass breakups from his linebacker position. Lopez was chosen to play in the WBL vs NWC/MAC All-Star Game as a running back. He is the son of Phillip and Shannon Lopez and intends to major in criminal justice at Defiance.
Tyler MacDonald, RB, 5-8, 170, Cardinal Stritch High School (Toledo, Ohio)
MacDonald played wing back, linebacker and safety for Cardinal Stritch head coach Jim Kubuske. MacDonald is the son of Terry and Shannon MacDonald and plans to major in criminal justice at Defiance.
Matt Mailhot, LB, 6-1, 225, Bartram Trail High School (St. John’s, Fla.)
Mailhot comes to Defiance after a stellar career at one of northern Florida’s top programs. Mailhot was a three-year starter for head coach Darrell Sutherland at Bartram Trail and finished the 2011 season with a 12-2 record. The linebacker finished the season with 98 tackles, nine sacks, three pass breakups, two forced fumbles, and an interception that he returned for a touchdown. The stellar senior season earned him First-Team All-County and First-Team All-6A District IV honors. Mailhot was also chosen to play in the North Florida Shrine Bowl, as well as the Florida-Georgia Border Wars All-Star Game. Mailhot is the son of Douglas and Laurie Mailhot and intends to major in criminal justice at Defiance.
Marc Malek, CB, 5-9, 155, Warren Woods Tower High School (Warren, Mich.)
Malek was a two-year starter at both cornerback and wide receiver for Warren Woods Tower head coach Dan Eberhardt. As a senior Malek had 34 tackles, six pass break ups, one interception and one fumble recovery. He was named to the 2011 All-McComb Area Conference Team. Malek was also named his team’s Most Improved Player and was given the team’s Spirit Award. Malek is the son of Mark and Jewel Malek and intends to major in business administration at Defiance.
Sam Mason, WR/TE, 6-1, 215, Manatee High School (Bradenton, Fla.)
Mason played mostly tight end for Manatee head coach Joe Kinnan and was a member of Manatee’s 7A State Championship team. The Hurricanes defeated First Coast High by a 40-0 score in the title game, finished the 2012 season with a 13-2 record and ended the year ranked No. 8 in the nation by the Max Preps Freeman Rankings.
Jorry Matherson, RB/DB, 5-10, 170, Atholton High School (Columbia, Md.)
Matherson did it all for Atholton head coach Kyle Schmitt, rushing for 215 yards and three touchdowns as a senior, while hauling in five receptions for 103 yards out of the backfield. Matherson also started for two years at cornerback, piling up 46 tackles, three passes defensed and three forced fumbles during his final campaign. Matherson earned Honorable Mention All-Columbia County honors as a senior and was nominated for the National Young Leaders Conference and the Global Young Leaders Conference. He is the son of Jerard and Stephanie Matherson and plans to major in sport management with a concentration in marketing at Defiance.
Kourdon Maxwell, DL, 5-11, 225, Ferndale High School (Ferndale, Mich.)
Maxwell started for two years along the defensive line for Ferndale head coach Ryan Dunlap and finished with 45 tackles and a sack during his senior season to earn Second-Team All-Oakland Activities Association honors. He is the son of Germaine Bomar and plans to major in criminal justice while at Defiance.
Jordan Michel, OL, 6-0, 220, Memorial High School (St. Marys, Ohio)
Jamarius Mitchell, RB, 5-10, 175, Garrett High School (Fort Wayne, Ind.)
Tucker Mollenkamp, RB, 5-8, 175, Waynesville High School (Waynesville, Ohio)
Mollenkamp played for Waynesville head coach Brandon Philpot and rushed for 99 yards and two scores, to go along with 10 receptions and 93 yards. Mollenkamp won his team’s Pride, Hustle, and Desire Award. He is the son of Mark and Alyssa Walters and plans to major in exercise science at Defiance.
Anthony Monahan-Estes, RB, 5-11, 200, Gainesville High School (Gainesville, Fla.)
Monahan-Estes was a two-way standout for Gainesville head coach James Thomson, rushing for 5.2 per attempt on the ground and scoring eight touchdowns. Monahan-Estes also made an impact on the defensive side of the ball, where he picked up 31 tackles, two interceptions and forced two fumbles as a middle linebacker for the Hurricanes. He is the son of Rodney Estes and Gail Monahan and plans to major in sports management at Defiance.
Kalen Moorman, DL, 6-2, 240, Snider High School (Fort Wayne, Ind.)
Moorman was a three-year starter on the offensive line for Snider head coach Kurt Tippmann and saw time on the defensive line as well. After his senior season, Moorman was named to the All-Summit Athletic Conference Team as an offensive lineman. He is the son of Erik Moorman and Tonya Gerardot and plans to major in communications at Defiance.
DeAnthony Nance, RB, 5-9, 170, Shawnee High School (Lima, Ohio)
Nance was a two-year starter for Shawnee head coach Richard West. Offensively, Nance rushed for 171 yards and four touchdowns as a wing back. Defensively, the Shawnee athlete racked up 30 tackles, four tackles for loss and a pass breakup while playing both linebacker and safety. Nance is the son of Tonya Nance and plans to major in digital forensic science at Defiance.
Jeremy Newby, TE, 6-2, 200, Elida High School (Lima, Ohio)
Newby was a standout tight end for Elida High and head coach Jason Carpenter and finished his senior campaign with 32 receptions, 467 yards and four touchdowns. Those numbers earned Newby First-Team All-Western Buckeye League and Second-Team All-Division III Northwest Ohio honors. Newby is the son of Mike Newby and Stacy Glenn and has not declared a field of study at Defiance College.
Joe Niehaus, OL, 6-2, 260, Grass Lake High School (Grass Lake, Mich.)
Niehaus was a two-year starting left tackle for Grass Lake head coach Randy Cole and earned First-Team All-Cascades Conference honors as both a junior and a senior. As a senior he was named First-Team Jackson Citizen Patriot All-Area Dream Team and Honorable Mention All-Michigan. Niehaus is the son of Chris and Kathy Niehaus and intends to major in integrated social studies at Defiance.
Stephen Paladino, OL, 5-11, 225, Martin County High School (Start, Fla.)
Paladino was a two-year starting offensive guard for Martin County head coach Chuck Kenyon. Paladino was named his team’s top offensive lineman and was also named a Scripps Treasure Coast All-Area lineman. He is the son of Stephen and Annette Paladino and plans to major in criminal justice at Defiance.
Jimmy Passmore, OL, 6-3, 260, River Rouge High School (Detroit, Mich.)
Passmore was a captain and two-year starter for River Rouge head coach Corey Parker. Passmore and his River Rouge teammates finished the 2011 season with a 7-3 record, winning the Michigan Metro West Championship. Passmore was named First-Team All-MMC as a senior and also excelled in the classroom, ranking ninth in his class academically. He is the son of Michelle Lucas and has not declared a major at Defiance.
Vinnie Perez, QB, 6-2, 175, Ayersville High School (Defiance, Ohio)
Perez was a three-year starter at quarter and safety for Ayersville head coach Chris Dales. After his senior season, Perez was awarded with All-Green Meadows Conference Honorable Mention honors as a defensive back. He is the son of Roy and Leah Perez and intends to major in athletic training at Defiance.
Brandon Perry, DB, 6-1, 170, Space Coast High School (Cocoa, Fla.)
Perry was a two-year starting safety for Space Coast head coach Kevin Freeman. As a senior, Perry racked up 40 tackles, forced three fumbles, recovered another and intercepted one pass. He is the son of Patrick and Jeannette Perry and intends to major in sport management and psychology at Defiance.
DeShaun Peterson Jr., OL, 6-2, 250, River Rouge High School (Detroit, Mich.)
Peterson was a three-year starting guard for River Rouge head coach Corey Parker, helping the Panthers claim the Michigan Metro Athletic Conference West Championship in 2011. Peterson was a two-time All-MMAC offensive lineman. He is the son of DeShaun Peterson Sr. and Lashawn Peterson and intends to major in psychology at Defiance.
Andrew Prielipp, QB/P, 6-0, 185, Britton Deerfield High School (Britton, Mich.)
Lucas Rosebrook, RB, 5-9, 205, Patrick Henry High School (Malinta, Ohio)
Rosebrook had an outstanding prep career for Patrick Henry head coach Bill Inselmann. The running back was a four-year starter, helping P-H to a 45-7 record and four-straight appearances in the Ohio State Playoffs during his career. Rosebrook was a two-time First-Team All-Northwest Ohio Athletic League and a two-time Second-Team All-Northwest Ohio District V selection, after rushing for 2,177 yards and 35 touchdowns over the 2010 and 2011 campaigns. Rosebrook also excelled as a starting middle linebacker, ending with 250 tackles, 15 sacks, and six interceptions during his career. He is the son of Sandy Rosebrook and David Rosebrook and has not decided on a course of study at Defiance.
Tyler Roth, LB, 5-9, 215, Lincoln Park High School (Lincoln Park, Mich.)
Roth was a two-year starter and a two-year captain at Lincoln Park from the fullback and linebacker slots. Roth racked up 81 tackles, 11 tackles for loss and six sacks as a middle linebacker to earn Second-Team All-Downriver honors. Roth was also named to the News Herald Dream Team and the Downriver Dream Team. He is the son of David and Charlene Roth and intends to major in communications at Defiance.
Anthony Sloan, DB, 5-9, 175, River Rouge High School (Detroit, Mich.)
Sloan was a three-year starting linebacker for River Rouge head coach Corey Parker. Sloan was named a team captain and his team’s Most Valuable Player as a senior. The three-time All-Michigan Metro Athletic Conference performer is the son of Anthony Sloan and Michael Reeves and intends on majoring in nursing at Defiance.
Aaron Smith, RB, 5-9, 225, Bath High School (Lima, Ohio)
Smith was a four-year starter for Bath High School under head coach Chris Miller. Smith rushed for 1,534 yards and 15 touchdowns as a senior, while leading the Western Buckeye League with 235.4 yards per game. As a junior, Smith rushed for 1,700 yards and 15 touchdowns. Smith earned First-Team All-WBL, First-Team All-Northwest Ohio District and Third-Team All-Ohio Division IV honors in both years. Smith was also named to the Lima News Dream Team after his senior season and was awarded Honorable Mention All-WBL honors after his sophomore season that saw him rush for 928 yards and six touchdowns. Smith shattered a number of Bath rushing marks, setting school single-game records with 295 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns in a game. Smith also set program records with 4,963 rushing yards, 819 carries, 5,118 total yards, 43 rushing touchdowns and 262 points scored in a career. He is the son of Carmen Smith and William Hughes and intends to major in graphic design at Defiance.
Kimani Smith, DL, 5-9, 230, Taft High School (Cincinnati, Ohio)
Smith was a four-year starter for Aikin High and Taft High, closing his prep career at Taft for head coach Mike Martin. Smith earned First-Team All-Cincinnati Metro Athletic Conference honors as a defensive lineman. He is the son of Roy Tinsley and Stephanie Short and plans to major in communication arts at Defiance.
Lance Vetter, OL, 6-5, 265, Wapakoneta High School (Wapakoneta, Ohio)
Vetter started one year at Wapakoneta for head coach Doug Frye and was a key cog in a dominant offense which fueled Wapakoneta’s 10-4 season and berth to the Ohio State Playoffs. Vetter’s strong senior season earned him Honorable Mention All-Western Buckeye League honors and a spot in the WBL vs NWC/MAC All-Star Game. He is the son of David and Kimberly Vetter and intends on majoring in criminal justice at Defiance.
Garrett Waiters, OL, 6-0, 275, Manatee High School (Bradenton, Fla.)
Waiters was a captain and a three-year starter on the offensive line for Manatee head coach Joe Kinnan. Waiters and the Hurricanes finished the 2011 season with a 13-2 record, winning the Florida 7A State Championship, after defeating First Coast 40-0 in the title game to end the 2011 season ranked No. 8 nationally by the Max Preps Freeman Rankings. Waiters was named a second-team all-area lineman by the Bradenton Herald and a Third-Team All-Florida performer. He is the son of Frank and Kathy Waiters and plans to major in criminal justice at Defiance.
Jaqwoine Watkins-Rivers, DE, 6-4, 205, Buchtel High School (Akron, Ohio)
Watkins-Rivers started at offensive tackle and tight end as a senior for Buchtel head coach Ricky Powers, helping Buchtel claim the Akron City League Championship in 2011. Watkins-Rivers was a Merit Roll student as a senior and won a career excellence award from Buchtel as a junior. He is the son of Dewanda Rivers and plans to major in sport management at Defiance.
Alvin Williams, DL, 6-1, 240, Northeast High School (St. Petersburg, Fla.)
Williams was a three-year starting defensive lineman for Northeast head coach Michael Jalazo. Williams played both defensive end and defensive tackle and picked up 43 tackles, three tackles for loss and one sack during his senior campaign. He is the son of Alvin Williams and Regina Bell and intends to major in forensic science at Defiance.
Julien Wilson, LB, 6-0, 215, Oak Park High School (Detroit, Mich.)
Kyle Wilson, DL, 5-11, 210, Wauseon High School (Wauseon, Ohio)
Wilson started one year for Wauseon head coach Travis Cooper and racked up 71 tackles and 3.5 sacks as a senior. Wilson was chosen as a First-Team All-Northwest Ohio District III defensive lineman, while also earning Second-Team All-Northwest Ohio Athletic League and Third-Team All-Ohio Division III accolades. He is the son of Kevin and Shari Wilson and has not declared an intended major at Defiance.
Matt Winings, RB, 6-1, 245, Olentangy High School (Lewis Center, Ohio)
Kevin Wynn, RB, 5-4, 135, Ponitz Career Technical Center (Dayton, Ohio)
Wynn had a strong senior season for Ponitz head coach Henderson Mosley. He finished with 829 rushing yards and five touchdowns, to go along with kick return yards.