Defensive end Mains latest to commit
First things first: Anthony Mains is skinny, but not that skinny.
ESPN.com's recruiting update had USF's latest commitment, a defensive end from Naples Golden Gate, as being 6-foot-7, 193 pounds, which makes McHugh Mattis look like Louie Anderson. A more accurate weight? He checked in today at 222 pounds, and refreshingly, corrected his height to 6-foot-6.
"I love it. It felt like home," said Mains, who visited USF's campus Monday and committed to coach Jim Leavitt and defensive line coach Dan McCarney. He had been to USF home games before the Bulls started recruiting him this spring, and had all kinds of big programs after him: he visited Wisconsin, turned down an offer from Colorado, and had West Virginia and Florida ramping up their efforts.
He's tied as the highest-rated of USF's 12 verbal commitments, drawing three stars from both Rivals.com and Scout.com, something only receiver Anthony Jones can boast from the current class. Mains had nine sacks last year and is close to that in half a season so far as a senior. He's athletic enough that he's played tight end and quarterback before settling in at defensive end. Golden Gate runs an unconventional 3-5 defense, so he's often dealing with tight ends and double teams that show he has some strength to go with his athleticism. His high school coach, David Tanner, said he could put 270 pounds on his frame, given a couple of years.
And I think this is purely coincidental, but in light of Nick Saban's comments last week, it's amusing that USF's last two commitments are academic studs. We'd told you that Lake Wales kicker Maikon Bonani is his class valedictorian, and Mains carries a 4.1 grade-point average. He visited Stanford and considered playing at Vanderbilt, two schools that practically turn away valedictorians.
USF has only 16 seniors on roster, so I've heard a little bit of concern that the Bulls are close to maxing out their available scholarships without allowing for bigger recruits that would jump in if the Bulls can do something really big, like winning the Big East. By my count, the team's only at 81 scholarships, which would mean at least 20 are available, and recruiting coordinator Carl Franks said he's confident by the time February rolls around, the Bulls will be able to sign very close to the maximum of 25. Remember, too, that a handful of nonqualifiers from the 2007 class could be enrolling in January.