Monday, January 22, 2018
Colleges

One recruit but three letters of intent sent

D.J. Law, a running back and safety from Haines City High, signed with three schools Wednesday: Mississippi, Utah and East Mississippi Community College.

Mississippi announced Law's signing at 8:23 a.m., according to the Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Miss.

Utah didn't announce Law's signing until 4:36 p.m., but a school spokeswoman told the newspaper she believes it received the letter of intent earlier — though she didn't have an official time. In addition, there is video of Law announcing he will play for the Utes and putting on their hat.

A Rebels spokesman said the school is investigating. An East Mississippi official was not available for comment.

Law is a consensus three-star prospect who scored 20 touchdowns last season.

Via Twitter, John Infante, a former compliance officer for Division I schools and now the author of the "Bylaw Blog," said, "Whichever conference validated and recorded the (letter of intent) first would have the valid one."

Trojans' big day: Three of the highest-rated players who entered Wednesday undecided signed with USC and first-year coach Steve Sarkisian.

First was 360-pound offensive lineman Damien Mama, a four-star recruit from Bellflower, Calif.

Then came cornerback Adoree' Jackson, a five-star cornerback from Gardena, Calif., who also listed Florida among the finalists. He's also a realistic candidate for the 2016 U.S. Olympic team in the long jump.

"Adoree' was the big surprise," Rivals national recruiting director Mike Farrell said. "We had no idea what that kid was going to do."

Finally, it was John Smith, a four-star athlete from Long Beach, Calif.

"Fight on, dude," he said.

The strong finish had USC ranked 10th in the nation by Rivals and Scout.

Family drama: Malik McDowell wants to go to Michigan State. The five-star defensive end from Detroit said so during a news conference. His father, who previously said he preferred Ohio State or Florida State, was on board with the decision. But McDowell's mother, Joya Crowe, wasn't at the news conference. She said she had a bad experience at Michi­gan State (though she didn't disclose details) and wants her son to go elsewhere. Only one parent's signature is required for a letter of intent. But when the Spartans released their signings, McDowell was not among them.

Thanks, Vandy: New Penn State coach James Franklin signed a class ranked 21st by Scout and Rivals. Five players had orally committed to Vanderbilt when Franklin coached there. But new Commodores coach Derek Mason, a former Stanford assistant, did lure one big recruit, four-star defensive end Nifae Lealao, away from the Cardinal.

Not going away: Auburn, which lost to Florida State in the BCS title game, landed three five-star prospects: junior college receiver D'haquille Williams, linebacker Tre' Williams and running back Roc Thomas. Rivals and Scout ranked the class No. 9 in the nation. "We're coming off a year where we were 13 seconds short of winning the national championship," coach Gus Malzahn said. "We've got a lot of guys coming back. And when you add that to this group coming in, the future's very bright."

Historic Wildcats: Mark Stoops didn't have to go far to recruit Kentucky's best-rated class in school history. The second-year coach signed 11 prospects from his native Ohio along with the state of Kentucky's top-four players, one of the program's best showings in-state. The group includes 11 four-star prospects resulting in best-ever rankings by Rivals (14th) and Scout (20).

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