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Ohio Football Welcomes 17 Newcomers on National Signing Day

Feb. 3, 2010

ATHENS, Ohio – The Ohio football program and head coach Frank Solich announced Wednesday that 17 newcomers will join its ranks next season. The class includes 11 incoming freshmen, four junior college transfers and two four-year transfers.

The class exhibits quite a bit of variety as the Bobcats will welcome student-athletes at eight different positions, including four linebackers.

The class includes players from seven different states, led by Ohio’s seven.

The Bobcats begin spring practice on March 30, while their spring game will be April 24.

Signing Day Central


2010 Ohio Football Recruiting Class

Name                                Pos.        Ht.                   Wt.                     Hometown/Last School

Kenny Ashley                       RB           5’7 1/2              230                      Los Angeles, Ca/Venice HS/El Camino College

Brandon Atwell                     WR          6’2 1/2              191                      Wytheville, Va./Wytheville George Wythe HS

Nathan Carpenter                  S            5’10                   200                      Lancaster, Ohio/Lancaster HS

Chase Cochran                     WR          6’2 1/4              169                      Lebanon, Ohio/Lebanon HS

Bryce Dietz                           OL          6’5 3/4                300                      Lincoln, Neb./Lincoln North Star HS

Anthony Grady, Jr.                LB           6’1 1/4              200                      Woodbridge, Va./C.D. Hylton HS

Thad Ingol                              S            6’0 3/4              190                      Barberton, Ohio/Barberton HS

Blake Jones                          LB           5’11 3/4             221                      Mechanicsville, Va./Hanover HS

Kyle Kozak                           DL           6’5                    245                      Pickerington, Ohio/Pickerington Central HS/Hargrave

                                                                                                                 Military Academy/Indiana

Octavius Leftwich               CB           6’1                    190                      Madison, Ala./Freedom Academy/El Camino College

Omar Leftwich                    CB           6’1                    190                      Huntsville, Ala./Freedom Academy/Fort Scott CC

Joe Morales                         LB            5’11 3/4            230                      South El Monte, Ca./St. Paul Cath. HS/Fullerton Coll.

John Prior                            OL            6’6                    283                      Portsmouth, Ohio/Portsmouth HS/Florida State

Mark Smith                           OL           6’3                    275                      Sarasota, Fla./Cardinal Mooney HS

Kyle Snyder                        QB           6’0 3/4               206                      Barberton, Ohio/Barberton HS

Joe Stefanski                       LB            6’2                    220                      Rockford, Michigan/Rockford HS

Jamaal Tarrent                     DL           6’2 1/4               272                      Toledo, Ohio/Toledo Central Catholic HS


Breakdown by Position

Linebacker (4): Grady, Jones, Morales, Stefanski

Offensive Line (3): Dietz, Prior, Smith

Cornerback (2): Octavius Leftwich, Omar Leftwich

Defensive Line (2): Kozak, Tarrent

Safety (2): Carpenter, Ingol

Wide Receiver (2): Atwell, Cochran

Quarterback (1): Snyder

Running Back (1): Ashley

Breakdown by State

Ohio (7): Carpenter, Cochran, Ingol, Kozak, Prior, Snyder, Tarrent

Virginia (3): Atwell, Grady, Jones

Alabama (2): Octavius Leftwich, Omar Leftwich

California (2): Ashley, Morales

Florida (1): Smith

Michigan (1): Stefanski

Nebraska (1): Dietz


Breakdown by Previous School

High School (11): Atwell, Carpenter, Cochran, Dietz, Grady, Ingol, Jones, Smith, Snyder, Stefanski, Tarrent

Junior College (4): Ashley, Octavius Leftwich, Omar Leftwich, Morales

Four-Year Transfer (2): Kozak, Prior


Player Biographies

Kenny Ashley

Running Back

5’7 1/2, 230

Los Angeles, Ca.

Venice High School/El Camino College

Prior to Ohio: Originally signed with USC out of high school, where he played running back, cornerback and linebacker… Earned 2005 Super Prep All-American, Super Prep All-Farwest, Prep-Star All-Western, Cal-Hi Sports All-State third team, All-L.A. City first team and All-Western League Offensive MVP honors as a senior…Rushed 100 times for 693 yards and 13 touchdowns last season at El Camino, earning second-team all-league honors…Had 1,510 yards on 169 carries (8.9 avg.) with 25 TDs and added 10 receptions for 109 yards (10.9 avg.) with three TDs during his senior season of high school…As a high school junior, he made Cal-Hi Sports All-State Underclass second team, All-L.A. City first team, Los Angeles Times All-South Bay/Westside and All-League Offensive MVP while running for 1,816 yards on 130 carries (14.0 avg.) with 23 TDs, as well as returning six kickoffs for scores and two punts for TDs…Was named to the Cal-Hi Sports All-State Sophomore team…Is the son of Edward and Marika Williford.


Brandon Atwell

Wide Receiver

6'2 1/2, 191

Wytheville, Va.

Wytheville George Wythe High School

High School: Played wide receiver, running back, kicker, punter, defensive back and kick returner in high school…First-team Virginia High School Coaches Association at running back and second-team VHSCA at punter as a senior…Named Bristol Herald Courier All-Southwest Virginia Team Offensive Player of the Year as a senior…Named first-team All-Virginia as a senior and second-team all-state as a junior…First-team all-region and first-team all-district as a junior and senior…Named all-league and a Top 100 player in Virginia by the Roanoke Times as a senior…Caught 21 passes for 341 yards, rushed 155 times for 1,430 yards and averaged 39.4 yards per punt as a senior…Scored a school-record 26 touchdowns as a senior…Made 29 of 32 point after attempts, kicked two field goals and picked off three passes as a senior…Snared 51 passes for 969 yards with 13 touchdowns and four interceptions on defense as a junior…Kicked three field goals and made 29 of 32 point after attempts as a junior…Member of the 400 meter district champion relay team during his junior track season…Named All-Virginia, all-region and all-district in soccer…Named district player of the year as a freshman in soccer…Is the son of Bob and Lora Atwell.


Nathan Carpenter


5’10, 200

Lancaster, Ohio

Lancaster High School

High School: Played running back, safety, kicker, kick returner and punt returner in high school…Named second-team All-Ohio, first-team Central District and first-team all-league…Lancaster Eagle Gazette Player of the Year…Participated in the North-South All-Star Game and the Big 33 Game…Rushed for 1400 yards on offense as a senior and had 68 tackles with three interceptions, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery on defense…Lettered in football four years, in swimming three years and track one year…Member of the National Honor Society…Is the son of Rob and Susie Carpenter.


Chase Cochran

Wide Receiver

6'2 1/4, 169

Lebanon, Ohio

Lebanon High School

High School: Played wide receiver and kick returner in high school…First-team All-Ohio and All-Southwest Ohio as a senior…Three-times All-Miami Valley, All-Cincinnati and all-conference honoree…Caught 39 passes for 1,070 yards and 17 touchdowns as a senior, 45 passes for 1,005 yards and eight touchdowns as a junior and 34 passes for 639 yards and six touchdowns as a sophomore…Led Lebanon to a league title as a senior…Earned All-Ohio honors in track as a sophomore (4x100 meter relay) and junior (100 and 200 meters)…Claimed All-Miami Valley and All-Southwest Ohio honors as senior in track…Earned all-league honors three times in track…Named to Lebanon’s Honor Roll every quarter during his career…Is the son of Steve and Lisa Cochran.


Bryce Dietz

Offensive Line

6'5 3/4, 300

Lincoln, Neb.

Lincoln North Star High School

High School: Played left tackle and nose guard in high school…Named first-team All-Nebraska and Super State by the Lincoln Journal Star…Named second-team All-Nebraska/All Class A by the Omaha World Herald…Two-time all-conference honoree…Led his team to a pair of playoff appearances…Named to the school’s Honor Roll twice and to the league’s All-Academic team…Lettered in football twice and track and field twice…Is the son of Thomas and Lucinda Dietz.


Anthony Grady, Jr.


6'1 1/4, 200

Woodbridge, Va.

C.D. Hylton High School

High School: Played safety, wide receiver, and kick returner in high school…Two-year varsity starter at safety…Named all-district as a junior and senior and honorable mention all-region as a senior…Finished his career with 133 tackles, six interceptions, three fumble recoveries, eight pass breakups…Two-year letterman in football and track… Member of the school’s Honor Roll…Is the son of Anthony Grady Sr. and Marlese Jackson with Carroll Jackson as his stepfather.


Thad Ingol


6’0 3/4, 190

Barberton, Ohio

Barberton High School

High School: Played wide receiver and defensive back in high school…First-team All-Ohio and all-district as a senior, while earning all-league honors the last two seasons…Caught 34 passes for 651 yards and five touchdowns as a senior, while carrying the ball 24 times for 138 yards and one score…Will letter four years in both football and track…High school teammate of fellow signee Kyle Snyder…Is the son of Timothy and Elonda Hooks


Blake Jones


5’11 3/4, 221

Mechanicsville, Va.

Hanover High School

High School: Played linebacker and defensive end in high school…First-team Associated Press All-Virginia, first-team Virginia High School Coaches Association, first-team All-Metro, first-team all-region and first team all-district as a senior…Had 108 tackles, including 38 tackles for loss, eight sacks, five forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and eight passes defended as a senior…Posted career numbers of 234 tackles, 108 tackles for loss, 29 sacks, 12 forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and eight passes defended…Led team to a berth in the state semifinals as a sophomore and senior…Lettered in baseball three years, baseball twice and wrestling once…Is the son of Bobby and Leanne Jones.


Octavius Leftwich


6'1, 190

Madison, Ala.

Freedom Academy/El Camino College

Prior to Ohio: Played quarterback, wide receiver, kick returner and punt returner in high school…Lettered three years at Freedom Academy before attending Fort Scott Community College and El Camino College, the same school that produced current Bobcats Hilton Dawson III and Boo Jackson…Made 16 tackles, picked off one passes, recorded one pass breakup and had one fumble recovery in just five games at El Camino…Is the nephew of Eric Ellis and the twin brother of fellow Bobcat signee Omar Leftwich.


Omar Leftwich


6’1, 190

Huntsville, Ala.

Freedom Academy/ Fort Scott Community College

Prior to Ohio: Played free safety and running back in high school…Named Freedom’s Offensive MVP for two seasons…Lettered three years at Freedom Academy before attending Fort Scott Community College, the same school that produced current Bobcat Kadre Pinder…Named second-team all-conference at Fort Scott…Had 37 tackles last season with a tackle for loss, an interception, a pass breakup, a forced fumble and three fumble recoveries…Is the nephew of Eric Ellis and the twin brother of fellow Bobcat signee Octavius Leftwich.


Kyle Kozak

Defensive Line

6’5, 245

Pickerington, Ohio

Pickerington Central High School/Hargrave Military Academy/Indiana

Prior to Ohio: Played defensive end and tight end in high school and defensive end at Hargrave where he recorded 15 sacks…Redshirted the 2008 season at Indiana where he was the three-time scout team player of the week…Led Pickerington to a second-place finish in the OHSAA Division II finals as a senior…Lettered in football four years and in basketball twice…Is the son of Kevin Kozak and Lisa Hammond.


Joe Morales


5’11 3/4, 230

South El Monte, CA

St. Paul Catholic High School/Fullerton College

Prior to Ohio: Played running back and linebacker in high school, where he was the first freshman in school history to play varsity football and start at linebacker…Two-time All-CIF (California Interscholastic Federation) and all-league honoree while leading his team to a pair of playoff appearances…Named All-Mid Valley Newspaper and All-San Gabriel Valley Tribune Team as a junior…Amassed 339 career tackles in high school and 40 at Fullerton, with five tackles for loss, one sack, one interception and one pass breakup…Is the son of Jose and Estela Morales…Married to Esperanza Morales


John Prior

Offensive Line

6’6, 283

Portsmouth, Ohio

Portsmouth High School/Florida State

Prior to Ohio: Redshirted as a freshman at FSU… Prep Star All-Midwest region... Rivals ranking of 51st among offensive tackles...No. 57 on Scout.com's list of offensive tackles...Ranked 75th at his position by ESPN...Ranked the 38th-best prospect coming out of Ohio by Rivals…Played offensive and defensive tackle at Portsmouth en route to earning All-District honors...Member of the Ohio team for the Big 33 game which pits Ohio high schoolers versus their Pennsylvania counterparts…Is the son of John Prior and Tracy Rister.


Mark Smith

Offensive Line

6'3, 275

Sarasota, Fla.

Cardinal Mooney High School

High School: Played guard on the offensive line and defensive tackle in high school…Named All-Florida as a junior and all-area as a junior and senior...Lettered four seasons in football and three in weightlifting…Started on Cardinal Mooney’s varsity squad as a sophomore…Is the son of Denise Smith.


Kyle Snyder


6’0 3/4, 206

Barberton, Ohio

Barberton High School

High School: Four-year starter for Barberton…Named All-Ohio as a senior, all-district twice and all-conference four times…Shattered school records with 6,553 career passing yards and 64 touchdown passes…Finished his high school career with 8,233 yards of total offense with 85 touchdowns…Is the son of Dean and Debra Snyder. 


Joe Stefanski


6’3, 220

Rockford, Michigan


High School: Played inside linebacker in high school where he helped lead his team to a 46-5 record, a state title, a state runner-up finish and three district titles…Rockford’s all-time leading tackler and a starter on the varsity squad since his freshman season…Piled up 132 tackles as a senior and 313 for his career…Won a state title in wrestling at 215 lbs…Is the son of John and Susan Stefanski.


Jamaal Tarrent

Defensive Line

6’2 1/4, 272

Toledo, Ohio

Toledo Central Catholic High School

High School: Played defensive end, defensive tackle and fullback in high school…Two-time second-team All-Ohio, all-city, all-district and All-Toledo Blade honoree…Led his team to league titles as a sophomore and junior and playoff berths his last three years…Three-year letterman in football and track…Is the son of James and Christine Tarrent.