The Menlo College Football Team is proud to announce the signings of 12 new players to add to their 2012 roster. Cameron Bargamento, Tracer Coleman, Denzel Guewell, Cooper Harris, Daniel Jones, Brady Moreno, Ryan Niranjan, David Pike, Tristan Romo, Scott Rose, Nicolas Slater, and Wayman Yeldell will suit up for the Oaks next season in what will be year one of the Mark Speckman era.
"We are very excited about this first wave of recruits," said Speckman on the initial portion of his first recruiting class at Menlo. "We addressed our greatest needs which were offensive lineman and speed. Several of these players will be expected to contribute immediately."
On the offensive line the Oaks will welcome in a number of key components after the departure of seniors Kamalu Kaina and Joe Perea. Scott Rose, a three year varsity starter at White River High School in Buckley, Washington brings a stellar resume into his Menlo career. As a member of the Hornets, Rose was a 1st Team All-League, 1st Team All-Area, and a two-time 1st Team All-State player. He will be accompanied by Cameron Bargamento, Brady Moreno, Tristan Romo, Tracer Coleman, and Wayman Yeldell, which help bolster an incoming offensive line with a wealth of potential.
Bargamento, while at Kauai High School in Lihue, Hawaii was named the team's 2011 Offensive Player of the Year, in addition to being recognized a two-time Conference All-Star. Romo was tabbed with a 1st Team Tri-County Athlete League selection as well as a 2nd Team All-Area honorable mention while attending Merrill West High School in Tracy, California. His stellar play coupled with an exuberant attitude should make him a force to be reckoned with. "On a scale of 1-10, I'm at a 15 for the opportunity to play college football and show what I got," said Romo on the prospects of joining the Oaks.
Moreno, Coleman, and Yeldell show equal promise, with Coleman displaying versatility to play on the defensive side of the ball as well. In addition to being named a two-time 2nd Team All-League Offensive Lineman in high school, the native of Atwater, California was a 1st Team All-League and 1st Team All-Area Defensive Lineman while suiting up at Atwater High School.
Speed is another prominent feature in this first wave of incoming recruits. The Oaks skill players enter their Menlo tenures with bright futures after enjoying success at the high school level. Daniel Jones racked up a wardrobe of gaudy statistics while playing running back for Bishop O'Dowd High School in nearby Oakland. Jones rushed for over 1,000 yards, scored 20 rushing touchdowns, and three kick-off return TD's in a memorable high school career. The remarkable stats earned the Oakland native with a 1st Team All-League Running Back selection as well as Bishop O'Dowd's Offensive Player of the Year honor.
The numbers for Cooper Harris are equally as impressive while attending Timberline High School in Boise, Idaho. Harris excelled on both sides of the ball, rushing for over 2,500 career yards as a running back, and recording over 270 career tackles as a linebacker. Harris' incredible success netted him with an East-West Shiners All-Star Football Game selection, as the team captain, in addition to two Conference Honorable Mention honors.
Nicolas Slater and David Pike round out the Oaks' running back class with Slater earning a 1st Team All-League accolade in 2011 and 2012, rushing for a combined 1195 yards with 18 touchdowns at Chistopher High School in Gilroy, California. As far as Pike is concerned, the Hidden Valley Lake, California native enters his Menlo stint with a resume as good as any. Pike was a 2010 All-County, All-League, and All-Empire (Small Schools) Offense Player of the Year. He broke the Middletown High School's single-season record for most yards gained and the Lake County single-season records for the most rushing touchdowns, most overall touchdowns, and most points scored.
Denzel Guewell and Ryan Niranjan round out the Oaks first group of recruits, as both show promise from a defensive standpoint. Playing cornerback at Edison High School in Stockton, California, Guewell won his school's Athlete of the Year Award. His coach at Edison High labeled Guewell as a hard nose worker, remarking that, "he will bring his hard hat and lunch pail to every practice." For Niranjan, the potential to be an impact player is out there as the native of nearby East Palo Alto native can play safety and tight end. Niranjan is looking forward to getting his Menlo career going, claiming that he "will be a hard worker, a leader, and a good team player."
With a tough schedule looming in his first season at the helm, Head Coach Mark Speckman is enthusiastic about the potential of these first 12 signees. "Going into spring practice, we knew we had some areas that needed to be addressed in recruiting," said Speckman. "This group, along with the rest of the recruits makes us a better football team. We have better size, speed, and versatility. I feel we are bringing in high quality people, as well as outstanding players."
Stay tuned for the Oaks next wave of recruits, to be released shortly.