Stanford is looking like
Quarterback U with
top recruiting class
Two of the top-15 rated quarterbacks, and a total of three, signed national letters of intent to Stanford Wednesday and some wondered if Jim Harbaugh was turning the school back into Quarterback U.
"Yeah, you can say that," said Harbaugh, who already has one of the top young quarterbacks in Andrew Luck, who led the Cardinal to the Sun Bowl as a redshirt freshman. Luck, of course, missed the bowl game with a broken bone in his right (throwing) hand.
Highly-touted Brett Nottingham, from nearby Alamo, heads the list of quarterbacks. The high school All-American, who played at Monte Vista High in Danville, completed over 69 percent of his passes, throwing for career totals of 7,467 yards and 91 touchdowns.
"He's a guy we had in our camp, like Luck, who won a lot of accolades," Harbaugh said. "He's a class act and I love his accuracy."
Darren Daniel, out of Alabama, and Dallas Lloyd, out of Utah, also signed. Lloyd, though, is not expected to enroll at Stanford until the fall of 2012, after completing his church mission.
Nottingham was rated the fourth best pro-style quarterback in the country, while Lloyd was rated 15th overall. Harbaugh already has Daniel in the lineup as a freshman.
"I envision a lot of ways to use him, even in his first year," Harbaugh said of Daniel. "Lloyd can improvise. He can throw over the top, sideways, even under hand."
Luck gives the Cardinal an established returning starter at a key position. The depth chart was a little thin after that. Tavita Pritchard, who played in the Sun Bowl, graduates this year and Josh Nunes was the only other backup as Alex Loukas missed the season with a severe injury.
If there was an overall theme for this class, it was about establishing depth across the board and replenishing the defense, especially at linebacker.
Stanford signed four linebackers, three defensive linemen and three defensive backs. There was another linebacker who got away.
The linebackers — Joe Hemschoot, Blake Lueders, Cleophus Robinson and A.J. Tarpley — likely will have the best chance to contribute immediately. Harbaugh said there could be several candidates among the class that could play right away.
"Probably more than last year," he said. "These guys will be given an opportunity, and the license, to compete for a job."
Lueders had been leaning toward Notre Dame but wavered following the coaching change there. He decided on Stanford two days ago. Randy Hart and Brian Polian, who coached at Notre Dame last year and were Lueders' key contacts at the school, are now coaching at Stanford.
The Cardinal did lose out on top linebacker prospect Jordan Zumwalt, who informed Stanford coaches late Tuesday night he had changed his commitment to UCLA. Zumwalt, a resident of Huntington Beach, committed to Stanford early and then saw his stock rise after a strong senior season.
Running back Ricky Seale is the son of former NFL corner and current NFL scout Sam Seale. Running back Anthony Wilkerson's uncles include former major league outfielder Mike Davis and former Stanford baseball star Mark Davis.
"These guys are going to be great teammates," Harbaugh said. "There's not one 'me' guy. They are team guys."