Samford brings in 11 new players - WVTM-TV Birmingham, AL

Samford brings in 11 new players

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The Samford Football program has announced the signing of 11 student-athletes for its 2014 signing class, head coach Pat Sullivan announced on Wednesday.

The signing class includes six offensive players and five defensive players. Samford signed four players from the state of Alabama, five from Florida, and one each from California and Tennessee.

"This is the first year since we've been here where we felt like we really didn't have to sign a lot of kids to come in and be an immediate starter because we have an experienced football team coming back," Sullivan said.

Sullivan noted that the experience returning to the team from last year allowed the staff to be very selective with the players they signed.

Sullivan added, "The guys we sign have to be good people, good students and be able to help us win a championship and we feel everyone in this class meets those criteria."

Here is a short biographical sketch of each of Samford's 11 signees.



QB, 6-6, 246, Corona, Calif. (Arizona State)

Michael Eubank transferred to Samford from Arizona State . . . He redshirted at Arizona State in 2011, and he participated with the Sun Devils during the 2012 and 2013 seasons . . . For his two seasons at Arizona State, Eubank accounted for 11 touchdowns (four passing, seven rushing) . . . He completed 64.4 percent of his passes (38-of-59) for 400 yards for the Sun Devils . . . Eubank had a stellar prep career at Centennial High School in Corona, Calif. . . . During high school, he completed 253-of-392 passes (64.5 percent) for 3,982 yards with 31 touchdowns and just 11 interceptions . . . He also rushed for 1,687 yards on 197 carries (8.6 avg.) with 24 touchdowns . . . As a senior at Centennial, Eubank completed 165-of-245 passes (67.3 percent) for 1,831 yards and 22 touchdowns . . . He also rushed for 1,329 yards and 19 touchdowns as a senior . . . Eubank was named a PrepStar All-American, and he was listed as a four-star prospect by both and . . . also named him the No. 8 dual-threat quarterback prospect in the nation and the No. 22 prospect from the state of California . . . named Eubank its Southern California Offensive Player of the Year in 2010.



DL, 6-2, 305, Nashville, Tenn. (Ensworth HS)

Xavier Forrest was a two-time All-State selection at Ensworth High School in Nashville, Tenn. . . . He helped lead his team to four state titles in Tennessee . . . Forrest was also a two-time All-Region player . . . He was also named his team's captain as a senior . . . As a tight end, he had 31 pancake blocks as a senior . . . Forrest also caught two passes for 50 yards . . . He also participated on the track team, and he won the shot put in the Vanderbilt Great Eight Meet.



DE, 6-3, 234, Talladega, Ala. (Talladega HS)

Ahmad Gooden was named All-State as a junior and All-County three-straight seasons at Talladega High School . . . He was also named All-Area, Team Captain and Defensive Most Valuable Player as a senior . . . He was ranked the No. 5 defensive end in the state by Friday Night Football Alabama Magazine, and he was ranked as a three-star prospect by 24/7 Sports . . . As a senior, Gooden tallied 77 tackles, eight sacks, 12 tackles for a loss and scored one touchdown.



WR, 5-11, 170, Tallahassee, Fla. (Lincoln HS)

Darius Harvey was named his team's Offensive Most Valuable Player as both a junior and a senior at Lincoln High School . . . He was invited to play in the NUC All-American Game following his senior season . . . He helped lead his team to regional and district championships . . . As a senior, Harvey, who played quarterback, passed for 2,134 yards and 18 touchdowns, while rushing for 836 yards and seven scores . . . For his high school career, Harvey had 4,128 passing yards and 37 touchdowns . . . He also rushed for 1,676 yards and 15 touchdowns . . . He also competed in basketball, track and weight lifting in high school.



QB, 6-2, 195, Kimberly, Ala. (Mortimer Jordan HS)

Devlin Hodges was a four-year varsity starter at Mortimer Jordan High School . . . Hodges passed for 4,900 yards and 44 touchdowns in his final three seasons as the team's starting quarterback . . . As a senior, he passed for 1,748 yards and 15 touchdowns . . . 

In 2013, he was named MVP of the VTO/247Sports Prep 100 . . . He was named to the Birmingham News All-Metro Honorable Mention team in 2012 and 2013 . . . In 2012, Hodges was named the top quarterback at the Scout MVP Camp, and he was named MVP of the VTO/ Prep 100 . . . He was also named to the NUC Alabama Top 45 and the Elite 11 Alumni . . . Hodges was named to the 2013 Alabama Coaches Pre-Season All-Senior Team.



WR, 5-10, 170, Dade City, Fla. (Pasco HS)

Malik Johns was named first team All-Conference at wide receiver as a junior and first team as an athlete following his senior season . . . He was also named third team All-State as an athlete . . . He lettered three years on the varsity football and basketball teams, and four years on the varsity baseball squad . . . He finished his senior season with 129 carries for 1,078 yards for an average of 8.5 yards per carry . . . Johns also had 25 receptions for 345 yards, and he amassed  2,082 all-purpose yards, scoring 23 touchdowns . . . He also played defense, producing one interception.



OL, 6-7, 280, Thomasville, Ala. (Thomasville HS)

Antwan Johnson was a two-year starter on the offensive line at Thomasville High School . . . In 2013, he won his team's Captain and Offensive Lineman Awards . . . As a senior, he graded 92 percent, and he led all offensive linemen in knock-down blocks with 58 . . . He led an offensive line that allowed the team's running game to average 6.8 yards per carry . . .  In his freshmen season in 2010, his team won the 4A state championship . . . He also participated in basketball at Thomasville.



RB, 5-6, 155, Miami, Fla. (Booker T. Washington HS)

Krondis Larry had 82 carries for 832 yards, for an average of  10.1 yards per carry as a senior . . . He also scored 13 touchdowns . . . Larry was named first team All-Dade . . . He was a part of the team at Booker T. Washington that was named national high school champion and 4A state champion . . . He also competed in track, earning a state championship in Florida and No. 9 national ranking in the 400m . . . He was named first team All-Dade in track . . . He was named the Nike SPARQ combine fastest man with a 4.36, 40-yard dash . . . He was also the fastest man at the Heath Evans camp . . . Larry was named the Earl Marshall Running Back of the Year.



LB, 6-3, 215, Pembroke Pines, Fla. (Somerset Academy)

Deion Pierre finished his senior season at Somerset Academy with 102 tackles . . . For his varsity career, Pierre amassed 256 tackles . . . He also played offense, producing 16 career touchdowns, 1,024 rushing yards and 1,800 all-purpose yards . . . He had 600 yards receiving . . . Pierre intercepted three passes, and scored on a 102-yard interception return . . .  He forced four fumbles . . . He was named All-County Honorable Mention, and he was a three-year starter and team captain . . . He was also named vice president of the African American Club and he was a member of the SGA.



LB, 6-2, 215, Tampa, Fla. (Land O' Lakes)

Shaheed Salmon comes to Samford from Land O' Lakes High School in Tampa, Fla. . . . As a senior, Salmon led the team with 117 tackles, including 21.5 for a loss . . . He also had 8.5 sacks, three forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, three passes defended and three interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown . . . Salmon was named third team All-State, and first team All-County and All-Conference . . . Salmon helped lead his team to an 8-2 record as a senior in 2013 . . . He also competed in basketball and track.



DB, 6-2, 185, Birmingham, Ala. (Parker HS)

Omari Williams was a four-year letterman at Parker High School in Birmingham . . . He was named first team 5A All-State as a senior in 2013 . . . Williams was also his team's Most Valuable Player and Captain in 2013 . . . He was also named to the Birmingham City High School's All-Defense team for the last three years in a row . . . Williams earned Fox6 Sideline 5A Defensive Player of the Year honors . . . As a senior, Williams had five interceptions, seven pass break-ups and 39 tackles on defense . . . Offensively, Williams caught 37 passes, including five for touchdowns . . . Williams also played basketball and baseball, serving as a team captain and earning All-Metro honors in both sports.


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