BOONE, N.C. — Fourteen student-athletes signed National Letters of Intent on Wednesday to join Appalachian State University's football program in 2013, first-year head coach Scott Satterfield announced.
Wednesday's signees — all high-school seniors — brings the total number of scholarship athletes in Satterfield's first recruiting class to 16. True freshman defensive back Anthony Covington (Charlotte, N.C./Mallard Creek) and junior offensive lineman Brandon Hunter (Chapel Hill, N.C./Hargrave Military Academy/Louisburg College) enrolled at Appalachian State for the spring semester and are already participating in all team activities. The remaining 14 signees will arrive at Appalachian this summer.
Each of the Mountaineers' 16 newcomers have a rating of at least two stars from Rivals.com with six — Covington, Hunter, wide receiver Dante Jones (Raleigh, N.C./Southeastern Raleigh), quarterback Taylor Lamb (Calhoun, Ga./Calhoun), defensive lineman/linebacker Nathaniel Norwood (Hampton, Ga./Lovejoy) and running back Terrence Upshaw (Duluth, Ga./Northview) — garnering three-star ratings from various media outlets.
"We're incredibly excited to welcome this fine group of young men to the Appalachian State family," Satterfield said. "I truly believe that this is a group that the Appalachian State family will be proud of on the field, in the classroom and in the community. The thing that really stood out during the recruiting process is the fact that we got to interact with a lot of great families. After meeting the families, it is obvious why these men are such great student-athletes. We can't wait to get the entire class on campus this summer."
|2013 APPALACHIAN STATE FOOTBALL SIGNEES
||North Augusta, S.C.
||Chapel Hill, N.C.
||Hargrave Military Academy
|* enrolled at Appalachian State for spring semester
|^ junior-college transfer has two seasons of eligibility remaining
TYRELL BROWN (DB, 5-10, 190, Hampton, Ga./Lovejoy)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … named first-team all-region and second-team all-Southern Crescent area as a senior … teamed with fellow Appalachian State newcomer Nathaniel Norwood to lead a defense that yielded only 10 points per game in 2012 … helped lead Lovejoy to a 13-2 record and berth in Georgia AAAAAA state championship game as a senior … touted as a well-rounded defensive back with the athleticism and coverage skills of a cornerback and the hitting ability of a safety … coached by Al Hughes … chose Appalachian State over UAB and Furman.
PARKER COLLINS (OL, 6-3, 290, North Augusta, S.C./North Augusta)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … tabbed as South Carolina's No. 4-ranked offensive lineman and one of the state's top 50 players overall by High School Sports Report … earned all-state recognition as a senior … two-time all-region and all-area honoree … 2012 South Carolina North-South all-star game participant … recorded 79 knockdown blocks as a senior … paved the way for starting running back that rushed for nearly 2,000 yards and 18 touchdowns in 2012 … helped lead North Augusta to 9-4 record in 2012 and second round of South Carolina Class AAAA II state playoffs, where it dropped a narrow 34-32 decision to eventual state champion Greenwood … coached by Dan Pippen … chose Appalachian State over Southern Miss, Navy and Georgia Southern.
ANTHONY COVINGTON (DB, 5-11, 195, Charlotte, N.C./Mallard Creek)
Rated as a three-star prospect, the No. 62 cornerback prospect nationally and the No. 24 overall prospect in the state of North Carolina by Rivals.com … fell one ratings point shy of being tabbed as a four-star recruit by Rivals.com … was an I-Meck 4A all-conference honoree as a senior … helped lead Mallard Creek to a combined 25-3 record over his junior and senior seasons, losing to the eventual 4AA state champion in the playoffs both years … coached by Michael Palmieri … chose Appalachian State over several BCS conference programs, including North Carolina, NC State, Wake Forest, Georgia Tech, Virginia, Mississippi State and Minnesota.
MARCUS COX (RB, 5-11, 185, Dacula, Ga./Dacula)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … was a three-year letterwinner as a running back and wide receiver … earned all-county recognition as a junior (all-purpose) and senior (running back) … finished prep career with 3,215 all-purpose yards (2,327 rushing, 888 receiving) and 44 total touchdowns (29 rushing, 10 receiving, five punt returns) … ranked among the top 10 in football-rich Gwinnette County with 683 rushing yards as a senior … also added six rushing touchdowns and 17 receptions for 283 yards and two scores during senior campaign … ran for 783 yards and 12 touchdowns and was team's leading receiver with 26 catches for 503 yards and five touchdowns while helping lead team to Georgia AAAAA state quarterfinals as a junior in 2011 … coached by Jared Zito … mother, Yvonne, was a standout volleyball player at Alabama State … brother, Greg Cox Jr., played football at Jacksonville State … cousin of former USC all-America linebacker and New England Patriots two-time Pro Bowler Willie McGinest … chose Appalachian State over Charlotte, Middle Tennessee, Ohio, Miami (Ohio), Buffalo, South Alabama, Liberty and Elon.
KENNAN GILCHRIST (OLB, 6-2, 200, Abbeville, S.C./Abbeville)
Rated as a two-start prospect by Rivals.com … tabbed as the No. 27 recruit in the state of South Carolina and the nation's No. 105-ranked outside linebacker by 247Sports.com … was a two-time South Carolina Defensive Player of the Year and first-team all-state honoree, earning the recognition in Class A as a junior in 2011 and in Class AA as a senior in 2012 … also earned all-conference, all-region and all-area honors … 2012 South Carolina North-South all-star game participant … recorded 130 tackles, nine sacks and two forced fumbles as a senior and notched 99 tackles, eight tackles for loss, seven sacks, two interceptions and a fumble recovery (all three of which he returned for touchdowns) as a junior … helped lead Abbeville to a 13-1 overall record and the 2011 South Carolina Class A I state championship as a junior and a 13-3 overall record and appearance in the 2012 South Carolina AA II title game as a senior … coached by Jamie Nickles … chose Appalachian State over Air Force, Charlotte, Coastal Carolina, Wofford, Furman and Elon.
COLBY GOSSETT (OL, 6-6, 310, Cumming, Ga./North Forsyth)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … played both offensive tackle and defensive end as a prep standout … earned first-team all-region recognition as an offensive lineman and notched 42 tackles and three sacks defensively as a senior … 2012 Chamber Bowl all-star game participant … coached by Blair Armstrong … chose Appalachian State over UAB, Georgia State, Elon and Samford.
BRANDON HUNTER (OL, 6-4, 275, Chapel Hill, N.C./Hargrave Military Academy/Louisburg College)
Rated as a three-star prospect at defensive end by Rivals.com when coming out of prep school at Hargrave Military Academy in 2010 … played at Louisburg College as a freshman in 2010 but due to family hardship, has not played the last two seasons … served as an assistant coach at Carrboro H.S. while away from college football, coaching offensive and defensive linemen while earning an associate degree from Alamance Community College … helped coach Carrboro to 2012 North Carolina 2AA state championship game … also played high-school football at Carrboro, where he was the 2008 Mid State 2A Conference Lineman of the Year and a two-time all-conference honoree … participated in 2008 Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas … coached at Carrboro by Jason Tudryn … has two seasons of eligibility remaining.
DANTE JONES (WR, 5-11, 175, Raleigh, N.C./Southeast Raleigh)
Rated as a three-star prospect by ESPN and a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … versatile athlete played quarterback, wide receiver and defensive back as a prep … recorded 750 receiving yards, 150 rushing yards and 200 passing yards while throwing for 11 touchdowns and just five interceptions as a senior … tallied 97 tackles and 11 pass break-ups defensively during senior campaign … coached by Marvin Burke … chose Appalachian State over Duke and Old Dominion.
TAYLOR LAMB (QB, 6-2, 200, Calhoun, Ga./Calhoun)
Rated as a three-star prospect by 247Sports.com and a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … tabbed as the No. 65 pro-style quarterback nationally by 247Sports.com … raked in a plethora of accolades as a senior, including being named a MaxPreps second-team small school all-American, the Gatorade Georgia Player of the Year, Associated Press first-team all-state and the Calhoun Times and Rome News-Tribune Offensive Player of the Year … completed 66.9 percent of his passes for 7,193 yards and 76 touchdowns with only 16 interceptions over final two seasons of prep career (284-420, 67.6 pct., 3,498 yds., 26 TD, 7 INT in 2012; 269-406, 66.3 pct., 3,635 yds., 40 TD, 9 INT in 2011) … led Calhoun to back-to-back Georgia Class AA state championship games, winning the title as a junior … coached by his uncle, Hal Lamb … son of Bobby Lamb, who played quarterback and coached at Southern Conference rival Furman, compiling a 67-40 record in nine seasons as the Paladins' head coach, and is currently the head coach at Mercer … Taylor chose Appalachian State over South Alabama, Southern Miss, Northern Illinois, Arkansas State and Georgia State.
NATHANIEL NORWOOD (OLB, 6-2, 225, Hampton, Ga./Lovejoy)
Rated as a three-star prospect by Scout.com and a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … tabbed as the nation's No. 54-rated middle linebacker by Scout.com … named the 2012 Georgia Class AAAAA Defensive Player of the Year … also earned first-team all-state recognition and was tabbed as the Clayton County Defensive Player of the Year … recorded 124 tackles, 41 tackles for loss, 16.5 sacks and 63 quarterback hurries as a senior … teamed with fellow Appalachian State newcomer Tyrell Brown to lead a defense that yielded only 10 points per game in 2012 … helped lead Lovejoy to a 13-2 record and berth in Georgia AAAAAA state championship game as a senior … coached by Al Hughes … chose Appalachian State over Old Dominion, Jacksonville State, Samford, Tennessee State and Eastern Illinois.
BEAU NUNN (OL, 6-4, 265, York, S.C./York Comprehensive)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … earned all-state and all-region honors … named Tri-County Lineman of the Week twice as a senior … compiled 35 knockdowns and averaged a 90-percent grade on offense and tallied 85 tackles on defense during senior campaign … teamed with fellow Appalachian State signee Lee Wright to lead a defense that surrendered only 11.1 points per game in 2012 … helped lead York Comprehensive to a combined 20-7 record over the final two seasons of his prep career … recorded three tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss and a sack in 2012 South Carolina North-South all-star game … coached by Bobby Carroll … grandfather, Don Ferrell, played football at Appalachian from 1966-69 and was an honorable-mention all-American … Beau chose Appalachian State over Florida Atlantic, Wofford, The Citadel and Western Carolina.
BRANDON PINCKNEY (DB, 6-0, 175, Spartanburg, S.C./Dorman)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … named all-state, all-region and all-area after recording 34 tackles and four interceptions as a senior … also tallied 29 receptions for 467 yards and four touchdowns and three rushes for 62 yards (20.7-yard avg.) and another score offensively in 2012 … was named Dorman's top defensive back as a junior and senior ... participated in 2012 Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas, recording four tackles in South Carolina's 23-19 win over North Carolina in the annual all-star duel … coached by David Gutshall … attended same high school as Appalachian State tight end Drew Bailey … chose Appalachian over Wofford, Furman and Elon.
RASHAAD TOWNES (DB, 6-2, 210, Macon, Ga./Howard)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … played both outside linebacker and safety during prep career … named all-county, all-region and all-Middle Georgia as a junior and senior … recorded 121 tackles, seven tackles for loss, three sacks and four forced fumbles as a senior … coached by David Cape … chose Appalachian State over Middle Tennessee, Georgia Southern, Chattanooga and Furman.
TERRENCE UPSHAW (RB, 5-10, 190, Duluth, Ga./Northview)
Rated as three-star prospect by ESPN and a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … tabbed by ESPN as No. 59-rated running back in the nation and the No. 72 overall player in the state of Georgia … two-time all-region honoree … set school record with 1,267 rushing yards, amassed over 1,600 all-purpose yards and scored 31 touchdowns (27 rushing, two receiving, one punt return, one kickoff return) as a senior … tallied more than 1,200 all-purpose yards and 14 total touchdowns as a junior … coached by Chad Davenport … chose Appalachian State over Vanderbilt, South Alabama, Samford, Navy, Bowling Green, Buffalo and Furman.
GEORGE VINSON (ILB, 6-0, 205, Damascus, Md./Damascus)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … two-time first-team all-Montgomery Sentinel honoree … selected to participate in Maryland Crab Bowl all-star game … recorded 290 tackles and more than 20 tackles for loss and 10 sacks over final three prep seasons, including 93 tackles and five sacks as a senior and 113 tackles, eight tackles for loss and five sacks as a junior … helped lead Damascus to 31-5 overall record and three state playoff appearances over last three seasons … coached by Eric Wallich … attended same high school as current Appalachian State defensive back Joel Ross … chose Appalachian State over Buffalo, Temple, Kent State, Ohio, Florida Atlantic, Old Dominion, Delaware, Stony Brook, Towson, Colgate and Bryant.
LEE WRIGHT (OLB, 5-10, 195, York, S.C./York Comprehensive)
Rated as a two-star prospect by Rivals.com … winner of Charlotte Touchdown Club's 2012 Donnie Shell Defensive Player of the Year award as the top defensive player in the Charlotte metro area … earned all-state and all-region recognition as a linebacker in 2012 and as a running back in 2011 … amassed 140 tackles, four sacks and four interceptions as a senior, which was his first season on the defensive side of the ball … teamed with fellow Appalachian State signee Beau Nunn to lead a defense that surrendered only 11.1 points per game in 2012 … scored nine touchdowns as a senior — three on interception returns and five on punt returns and one on a kickoff return … participated in the 2012 Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas, finishing with seven tackles, two sickles for loss, a sack and a key interception in South Carolina's 23-19 win over North Carolina in the annual all-star duel … moved to defense after rushing for more than 1,800 yards as a junior … coached by Bobby Carroll … carries a 4.7 grade point average … chose Appalachian State over Kent State and Toledo.