Leave it to a Gruden to kick off National Signing Day in the pre-dawn darkness.
Carrollwood Day ATH Jon David "Deuce" Gruden II -- whose dad's a pretty famous early riser -- commenced a day of celebration for bay area athletes by signing with Division I-AA Lafayette. Gruden couldn't officially sign until after 7 a.m. but he and his family arrived at the school around 6:30.
Gruden (5-6 180) played quarterback to fill a void for the Patriots the past two seasons, amassing nearly 4,000 total yards during that span while doubling as a linebacker/safety.
"When we started the program (four years ago) we needed an anchor for it," CDS coach Lane McLaughlin said. "His freshman and sophomore year he didn't come off the field for anything."
Gruden likely be a slot receiver and see time on special teams at Lafayette, one of several small-school programs he visited. His other trips included one to Dayton, his dad's alma mater.
"He didn't try to put any pressure on me at all," Deuce Gruden said.
Photo:(from left to right) Grandparents Jim and Kathy Gruden, mom Cindy Gruden, Deuce, dad Jon Gruden