The Shore Daily, 1/20/15
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With National Signing Day rapidly approaching on Feb. 4, the commitments are coming fast and furious now from the top football talents in the Shore Conference senior class.
However, several big names still remain uncommitted with only about two weeks to go, with the most prominent being Barnegat senior offensive lineman Sam Madden, who announced via Twitter on Saturday that he de-committed from Wisconsin. Madden, a 6-foot-7, 335-pound lineman, had been verbally committed to the Badgers since June before deciding to re-open his recruitment. Wisconsin has a new head coach, Paul Chryst, who was hired last month after previous head coach Gary Andersen bolted west to take the Oregon State job.
Rutgers is going hard after Madden, who had 20-plus FBS offers before committing to the Badgers, where it sounds like some miscommunication with the new staff may have contributed to his decision to de-commit. Madden has not narrowed down his list to any specific schools yet, according to Barnegat head coach Rob Davis, but schools in the ACC, Big Ten and SEC have all been calling since Madden's announcement on Saturday. Madden did not use up all his official visits before committing to Wisconsin, so he could theoretically take one in the next two weeks before Signing Day.
Toms River North senior tight end Jordan Craig, who has an offer from Buffalo as well as several FCS offers, also remains uncommitted along with another Toms River star, Toms River South quarterback Tymere Berry. Berry, who is in the midst of a brilliant basketball season, has offers from Army and Monmouth University. Manalapan senior kicker Mike Caggiano, a two-time, first-team All-Shore selection, has offers from Hawaii, UMass and Stony Brook and remains undecided.
Brick senior quarterback Carmen Sclafani and defensive back Ja'Quez Johnson, St. John Vianney wide receiver Dan Calabro, Jackson Memorial offensive lineman Glenn Kipila and safety Matt Castronuova, Barnegat defensive lineman Xavier Young, Long Branch linebacker Hunter Baillie and defensive end John Mimes, Red Bank Catholic defensive back Mike DeMonte and wide receiver Nick Lubischer, and Lakewood defensive end Datrell Reed are All-Shore selections with FCS or Division II offers who are still undecided. Reed is expected to announce his choice during an event at the school on Signing Day, according to coach L.J. Clark.
As for those who have made their decisions recently, Manalapan will be sending two players to the same Ivy League program as senior defensive back Dan Debner, who was a first-team All-Shore selection by Shore Sports Network, announced Monday that he is headed to Yale University, joining teammate Kyle Mullen, a first-team All-Shore defensive end. Braves senior linebacker Joe Mendez is heading to Bryant University in the Northeast Conference, where another local standout will join him. Manasquan graduate Matt Forst, a lineman who played a post-grad season this fall, also has committed to Bryant.
Shore Regional senior linebacker James Bedell, another first-team All-Shore pick who is also an outstanding long-snapper, is headed to UConn as a preferred walk-on.
As we get closer to Signing Day, I will also take a look at the Class of 2016, where St. John Vianney quarterback Anthony Brown and defensive back Khalil Haskins, Red Bank Catholic lineman Liam Smith and quarterback Eddie Hahn, and Ocean running back Tyler Thompson headline another stellar class.
As for last night's Shore Conference action, there was just one basketball game on the holiday as Toms River North rolled over Jackson Memorial 60-29 in Class A South. The Mariners have rattled off two straight wins over 30-plus points since suffering their only loss of the season against Brick Memorial last week.
There also should be a lot of 1,000-point milestones coming in the next few weeks. Lacey's Chris Iapicco, Shore's Kevin Bloodgood and a pair of juniors, Rumson's Brendan Barry and CBA's Pat Andree, all look to join Matawan senior guard Jason Dunne and Southern senior wingman Jake Logue in the 1,000-point club.
More on Tuesday:
- The guy who caught the ball that Jermaine Kearse heaved into the stands after the Seahawks beat Green Bay is savoring the moment because he is going to jail the day after the Super Bowl.
- University of Buffalo forward Kristen Sharkey (Southern) earned Player of the Week honors after hitting 1,000 points for her career.
- Hoard the canned goods, head to your shelter and prepare for the end of the world. The Knicks won a game. The correction in the New York Times story pretty much sums up the season.
- Ewing senior guard Trey Lowe, a Temple recruit, is about to enter the rare 2,000-point club for his career.
- Florida is holding its first girls high school wrestling championships.
On tap for tonight: Tonight's schedule is a busy one, with just about every Shore Conference team in action. The two games that stand out from the pack are No. 7 Colts Neck at No. 9 Wall at 6:30 p.m. in a game where both teams are currently tied for first in Class B North, and Manchester at No. 6 Lakewood at 6:30 p.m. in a game for sole possession of first place in Class B South.
Wrestling takes center stage tomorrow, when No. 3 Jackson Memorial travels to No. 2 Brick Memorial for a titanic Class A South showdown.
I'll end with Damian Lillard bringing down the house in Portland last night.