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Pokes announce football signers

Feb 1, 2012 - UW Athletic Dept.

Wyoming's 2012 Football Recruiting Class

Has a Definite West Coast Influence

Cowboys Sign 23 Players From Nine States, Australia and Germany

Laramie, Wyo. (Feb. 1, 2012) -- The 2012 University of Wyoming football recruiting class was announced on

Wednesday, and this year's class has a definite West Coast feel to it. Head football coach Dave Christensen announced

his fourth recruiting class at Wyoming at a Wednesday afternoon press conference. Of the 23 signees announced, over

fifty percent of the recruits -- 12 total -- hail from the states of California, Washington and Oregon. In addition, the

Cowboys signed one player each from Hawai'i and Arizona.

The states of California and Washington led the way with six and five signees, respectively. The next largest group

came from the state of Texas, with three recruits. Wyoming continued its trend of international recruiting, signing two

natives of Germany and one native Australian.

"We're very pleased with the class that we've put together," said Christensen. "I really like the athleticism and the

depth in this class. We always try to balance out each class, signing players at positions across the board -- offensive line,

defensive line, linebackers, secondary and skill positions offensively. I think we've added quality players in all of those

areas. We also signed a punter. After losing a four-year starter, we needed someone who had the ability to step in

there right away and punt for us.

"We've added size and experience to our offensive line, with a couple junior college players. Likewise with adding

Justin Bernthaler to the defensive line.

"I'm excited that we were able to get (Tim) Gleeson (punter) and (Eric) Nzeocha (wide receiver) in here early out

of high school to go through spring drills with us. That certainly will give them an advantage by getting them 15 extra

practices.

"I think we've added more speed to our team, along with more size and strength to all areas.

"We had some needs at wide receiver, and I feel very good about the young players we were able to add.

"Overall, we couldn't be more excited about this class."

In answering why the Cowboys had shifted their recruiting west this year, particularly in the state of Washington,

Christensen attributed that to the current makeup of his coaching staff, which includes two staff members, in defensive

coordinator Chris Tormey and offensive line coach Pete Kaligis, who like Christensen are natives of the state of

Washington and all played at the University of Washington.

"When we hired Chris Tormey, there were a number of coaches he had contact with and relationships with that we

wanted to benefit from," said Christensen. "Chris has spent a lot of time during his career recruiting in the Northwest.

Coach (Pete) Kaligis has done a great job up there the last three years, and with my contacts there we felt like it was an

area that we could be effective. We also feel it is an under-recruited area and an area that we can put more emphasis.

We were able to sign five quality players in that area in this class. We'll continue to do that. I think the transition for

kids from that part of the country to Wyoming is an easy one."

Among the top-rated individual players in Wyoming's class are junior college transfers Justin Bernthaler from

Fullerton Community College in California and Connor Rains from American River Community College in California.

JCGridiron.Rivals.com ranked Bernthaler No. 2 in the nation in its rankings of junior college weakside defensive ends,

and ranked Rains as the No. 17 best junior college offensive tackle in the country.

While Christensen has never signed a large number of junior college players, he feels like the three student-athletes

he signed this year can provide some immediate help in two areas -- the offensive and defensive lines -- where the

Cowboys lost longtime starters to graduation.

"Justin Bernthaler is physically ready to help us right away at defensive end," said Christensen. "At offensive tackle,

Connor Rains has the potential to help us this coming season. He joined us in January, so we will get a chance to see

how he competes this spring. In Walker Madden, we have a young man who has two years of added experience at the

junior college level. He is a good technician, and has a great frame at 6'9". Right now, he is only about 260 pounds so

we want him to add some weight as he steps up to the Division I level."

Wyoming's 2012 class is a balanced one, with 12 recruits on offense, 10 on defense and one special teams

performer.

The Cowboys signed players from nine different states, two individuals from Germany and one from Australia.

Native Germans Justin Bernthaler, a defensive end, and Eric Nzeocha, a wide receiver, signed with the Cowboys in this

year's class. They join three fellow Germans on the Cowboy roster. Wyoming's other three German natives are: senior

linebacker Oliver Schober; sophomore linebacker Alex Borgs; and sophomore linebacker/safety Mark Nzeocha, Eric's

older brother.

The class of 23 individuals included 20 high school recruits and three junior college players.

Three members of the class are already enrolled at the University of Wyoming for the 2012 spring semester. The

three are: junior college tackle Rains, freshman punter Gleeson and freshman wide receiver Nzeocha.

"We are still looking at some players to add to our class before the end of the signing period," said Christensen.

"We would like to add to our corner and safety spots. We've got some guys out there that we are still evaluating, and

are in contact with to fill those positions."

The national letter-of-intent signing period for football began on Wednesday, Feb. 1 and will conclude on Sunday,

April 1.

The recruits in the 2012 Wyoming recruiting class bring with them a number of outstanding credentials. Among the

individual honors received by the members of this year's class are:

• Trent Sewell, a wide receiver from Bothell, Wash., was ranked by Rivals.com as the No. 8 best recruit in the state

of Washington at all positions. ESPN.com rated him as the No. 11 recruit in the state of Washington. Both Rivals and

ESPN ranked Sewell as the No. 1 wide receiver recruit in Washington.

• Uso Olive, a defensive lineman from Federal Way, Wash., was ranked by ESPN.com as the No. 12 recruit in its

breakdown of the top recruits in the state of Washington. Superprep Magazine ranked him as the No. 20 top recruit in

the state of Washington. Olive also was a 2011 Associated Press First Team Class 4A All-State selection. He is joined by

his high school teammate D.J. May in this year's Wyoming recruiting class.

• Chase Roullier, an offensive lineman from Savage, Minn., was rated as the No. 15 recruit at all positions in the

state of Minnesota by ESPN.com. Roullier earned First Team Associated Press All-State honors as a senior.

• Jason Thompson, a quarterback from Renton, Wash., was rated by SuperPrep Magazine as its No. 19 recruit on its

list of top players in the state of Washington. Thompson was also selected by the Seattle Times as a First Team All-State

selection.

•Sam Awrabi was ranked by Rivals.com as the No. 66 overall recruit at all positions in the talent-rich state of

California. Awrabi, who played outside linebacker at Clovis East High School in Clovis, Calif., is projected as a defensive

end at Wyoming.

•Chase Appleby was named First Team All-State Class 4A in Texas by Rivals.com. Appleby also was named District

9-4A Defensive Player of the year as a defensive lineman his senior season at Centennial High School in Frisco, Texas.

•Jacob English, an offensive lineman from Beloit, Kan., was honored as a First Team Class 3A All-State selection by

both the Kansas Football Coaches Association and the Wichita Eagle.

•Damian Greene, a talented defensive back and running back, led his Skyline High team in Sammamish, Wash., to

the 2011 and 2009 Class 4A State Championships -- the largest classification in the state of Washington.

•D.J. May, an outstanding running back and defensive back at Federal Way High School in Federal Way, Wash.,

earned First Team Associated Press All-State Class 4A honors as a senior. He joins his high school teammate Uso Olive in

this year's Wyoming recruiting class.

•Tom Thornton was named by the Arizona Coaches Association as a First Team Division II All-State quarterback at

Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe, Ariz.

University of Wyoming Cowboys

2012 Football Signings

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Breakdown:

High School Signees (20)

Junior College Signees ( 3)

Totals (23)

High-School Signees (20)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Chase Appleby DL 6-0 280 Fr. Frisco, Texas (Centennial)

Sam Awrabi DE 6-3 240 Fr. Clovis, Calif. (East)

Nico Brown WR 6-3 200 Fr. Leander, Texas (Leander)

Jacob English OL 6-5 280 Fr. Beloit, Kan. (Beloit)

Tim Gleeson* P 6-2 195 Fr. Melbourne, Australia ( Viewbank College Prep)

Damian Greene DB 5-9 174 Fr. Sammamish, Wash. (Skyline)

Siaosi Hala'api'api LB 6-2 225 Fr. Honolulu, Hawai'i (Kaimuki)

Sam Hardy DL 6-3 275 Fr. West Hills, Calif. (Chaminade College Prep)

Nathan Leddige OL 6-5 282 Fr. Beaverton, Ore. (Southridge)

D.J. May RB 5-11 190 Fr. Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way)

Dylan Muscat DB 6-0 175 Fr. Santa Monica, Calif. (Santa Monica)

Eric Nzeocha* WR 6-1 200 Fr. Neusitz, Germany (FOS Ansbach)

Uso Olive DL 6-1 305 Fr. Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way)

Chase Roullier OL 6-4 290 Fr. Savage, Minn. (Burnsville)

Trent Sewell WR 6-2 197 Fr. Bothell, Wash. (Bothell)

Jason Thompson QB 6-2 205 Fr. Renton, Wash. (John F. Kennedy)

Tom Thornton QB 6-1 205 Fr. Tempe, Ariz. (Marcos de Niza)

Austin Tixier DL 6-3 250 Fr. Mount Prospect, Ill. (Prospect)

Lucas Wacha LB 6-1 208 Fr. Texarkana, Texas (Pleasant Grove)

Shaun Wick RB 5-10 190 Fr. Ventura, Calif. (St. Bonaventure)

Junior-College Signees and Transfers (3)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Justin Bernthaler DL 6-2 245 Jr. Stuttgart, Germany (Fullerton CC, Calif.)

Walker Madden OL 6-9 260 Jr. Yucca Valley, Calif. (College of the Desert, Calif.)

Connor Rains# OT 6-7 305 Jr. Placerville, Calif. (American River CC, Calif.)

*High School signees who enrolled at UW for the 2012 spring semester

#Junior College signees who enrolled at UW for the 2012 spring semesterUniversity of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Four

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

2011 University of Wyoming Football Signees

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

High-School Signees

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Chase Appleby DL 6-0 280 Fr. Frisco, Texas (Centennial)

Chase Appleby, a 6-0 and 280-pound defensive lineman, was selected as the District 9-4A Defensive Player of the

Year at Centennial High School in Frisco, Texas. He was named First Team All-State Class 4A by Rivals.com, and was

also named by Rivals.com to the All-Dallas/Fort Worth Area First Team. Appleby earned Honorable Mention Associated

Press 4A All-State recognition from the Texas AP Sports Editors. VYPE High School Sports Magazine named Appleby to

its 2011 Collin County/North Texas First Team. As a team captain, he helped lead his high school team to a 12-1 record

and the Regional Finals of the 2011 state playoffs. Centennial High defeated McKinney North (45-16) in the First Round

of the State Playoffs and Conrad (56-13) in the Second Round before losing to Corsicana (31-52) in the Region 2 Finals.

He recorded 79 tackles, 6.0 sacks, 16.0 tackles for loss and forced two fumbles as a senior. His junior season, Appleby

earned First Team All-District honors while registering 55 tackles and 2.0 sacks. He was credited with 40 tackles, 2.0

sacks and recovered one fumble as a sophomore. He played for head coach Mark Howard at Centennial High School.

Born Oct. 1, 1993, he is the son of Vicki and David Appleby. Appleby's father David played football at Texas A&M

from 1976-80. He has one older sister, Alexa. Appleby was also recruited by Arkansas State, Baylor and North Texas.

Sam Awrabi DE 6-3 240 Fr. Clovis, Calif. (East)

Pronunciation: ah- ROB-ee

Sam Awrabi is projected as a defensive end for the Cowboys, but also played outside linebacker in high school.

Ranked as the No. 81 outside linebacker in the nation by Scout.com. Rivals.com ranked him as the No. 66 overall recruit

in the state of California in 2011. He had 105 tackles, 33.0 tackles for loss, 6.0 sacks and four forced fumbles his senior

season. Awrabi was named the Central Valley Defensive Player of the Year and was a First Team All-Valley selection as a

senior. His junior season, he accounted for 94 tackles, 30.0 tackles for loss and 8.0 sacks. According to several recruiting

services, he has one of the highest vertical leaps (36 inches) and one of the longest long jumps (99 inches) in the nation

among the 2012 defensive line class. Awrabi played for head football coach Ryan Reynolds at Clovis East High School.

Born Aug. 22, 1993, he is the son of Rhonda and Kam Awrabi. He has two older brothers, Justin and Alan, and one

younger brother, Jacob. Awrabi was also recruited by Arizona State, California, Hawai'i, San Jose State, UCLA, Utah and

Washington State.

Nico Brown WR 6-3 200 Fr. Leander, Texas (Leander)

Nico Brown earned First Team All-District 16-5A honors as a senior at Leander High School in Leander, Texas. Class

5A is the largest classification in the state of Texas. As a team captain, he helped lead Leander High to an 8-4 overall

record and a 6-0 conference record as it advanced to the State Playoffs. Leander defeated Austin (35-14) in the First

Round before losing to Westfield (7-13) in the Second Round of Region 2 in Class 5A. His junior season of 2010, Brown

was a Second Team All-District selection, as his team posted a 7-6 record. As a sophomore, he was an Honorable

Mention All-District honoree, and his team recorded an 8-4 season. He also earned Academic All-District honors his

sophomore, junior and senior years in high school. He played for head coach Clint Harper.

Born Jan. 30, 1994, he is the son of Cecilia and Cory Brown and has eight brothers and sisters. He would like to

study business in college. Brown was also recruited by Arizona, Houston, Kansas State, North Texas, SMU, TCU and

Tulsa.

Jacob English OL 6-5 280 Fr. Beloit, Kan. (Beloit)

Jacob English was named First Team All-State Class 3A by the Wichita Eagle in 2011. English also was an AllState selection of the Kansas Football Coaches Association. He has been selected to play for the West Team in the

2012 Kansas Shrine Bowl game to be played on July 28, 2012, in Welch Stadium at Emporia State University. As a

team captain his senior season, he helped Beloit to a 9-3 record and advance to the Quarterfinals of the Class 3A State

Playoffs. Beloit defeated Sterling 58-22 in the First Round and Phillipsburg 48-7 in the Second Round before losing to

Garden Plain 34-50 in the Quarterfinals. His junior season, Beloit posted a 10-3 record and advanced to the Semifinals

of the Class 3A State Playoffs. Beloit won over Ellsworth 34-14 in the First Round, defeated Norton 42-35 in the Second

Round and beat Trinity 38-12 in the Quarterfinals. Beloit lost to Conway Springs 22-59 in the Semifinals. Also an

outstanding wrestler, English won 37 matches as a junior in 2011, won the Regional title at heavyweight and placed fifth

in State. He has been an honor student throughout high school, and has also been a member of student council all four

years of high school. English played for head football coach Greg Koenig.

Born Jan. 24, 1994, he is the son of Michelle and Richard English, and has one younger brother, Grant. His mother

is a nurse and his father is an EMT. English would like to major in pre-medicine and become an oncologist. He was also

recruited by Army, Harvard, Iowa State, Kansas State, Penn and Tulsa.

(continued)University of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Five

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Tim Gleeson P 6-2 195 Fr. Melbourne, Australia (Viewbank College Prep)

Tim Gleeson is a 6-2, 195-pound freshman punter originally from Melbourne, Australia. Gleeson comes to

Wyoming after training at Prokick Australia. He was trained by Nathan Chapman, a former Australian Football League

player who also punted briefly for the Green Bay Packers. Gleeson originally had dreams of playing Australian rules

football professionally, before deciding to pursue American football and an education in the United States. He played

for the Northern Knights, which is an Under 18 Australian rules football team that competes in the TAC Cup series

in the Australian state of Victoria. The TAC Cup series is a youth program that is a predecessor to the professional

leagues in Australia. Gleeson was named MVP for his performance in the Under 18 State Championship. He was also

an outstanding track and field athlete, representing his high school, Viewbank College Prep, in the Victorian State

Championships in the long jump, triple jump, high jump and 4x100 meter relay. Gleeson attended Viewbank College

Prep, which is a secondary school in the northeastern Melbourne suburb of Viewbank.

A former teammate of Gleeson's, Alex Dunnachie, earned a football scholarship as a punter at the University of

Hawai'i after working with Nathan Chapman at Prokick Australia. Dunnachie completed his third season as the starting

punter for Hawai'i in 2011. Among other U.S. colleges that had Australian punters on their rosters this past season were:

LSU, East Carolina, Eastern Kentucky, Eastern Michigan, Memphis, Portland State and Wake Forest. Brad Wing, LSU's

freshman punter, earned 2011 First Team All-America honors from Associated Press.

Born March 27, 1992, Gleeson is the son of Sally and Steve Gleeson. He has a younger brother, William, and a

younger sister, Annabelle.

Damian Greene DB 5-9 174 Fr. Sammamish, Wash. (Skyline)

Damian Greene earned First Team KingCo Conference honors as a cornerback and Second Team KingCo Conference

as a running back his senior season. He helped lead Skyline High School to the 2011 4A State Championship and an

11-3 overall record. Class 4A is the largest classification in the state of Washington. The Seattle Times named him

a "Star of the Week" for his performance in the semifinals of the state playoffs, helping Sklyine advance to the 4A

State Championship game. Greene scored three touchdowns, two receiving and one rushing, in a 26-21 win over

second ranked Woodinville in the semifinals. He also made a touchdown saving tackle, recovered a fumble and broke

up one pass. On the season, Greene rushed for 751 yards on 133 carries and scored eight rushing touchdowns. He

also caught 25 passes for 531 yards and scored seven receiving TDs. As a junior, Greene was named Second Team

KingCo Conference at cornerback as Skyline posted a 12-2 record and ended the season as runnerup for the 4A State

Championship. His sophomore season, he earned Honorable Mention All-KingCo honors as a cornerback, and was a

starter on Skyline's 4A State Championship team that went 12-2. He played for head football coach Mat Taylor.

Born May 6, 1994, he is the son of Ida and Danny Greene. He has two brothers, Danny Jr. and Mychal, and one

sister, Darla. His father Danny played football at the University of Washington.

Siaosi Hala'api'api LB 6-2 225 Fr. Honolulu, Hawai'i (Kaimuki)

Pronunciation: see-AH-see, HALL-uh, OP-ee, OP-ee

Siaosi Hala'api'api earned Honorable Mention All-State honors from the Honolulu Star-Advertiser his senior season.

He was also named the Oahu Interscholastic Association (OIA) White Conference Defensive Player of the Year his senior

season, and was named a First Team OIA linebacker and utility player and a Second Team OIA running back . As a

middle linebacker, he tallied 89 tackles, 14.0 sacks and intercepted five passes in 2011. He also rushed for 229 yards on

46 carries and scored five rushing touchdowns, while catching seven passes for 105 yards. Elected a team captain, he led

Kaimuki High to an 8-2 record and the the semifinals of the playoffs. His junior season, Hala'api'api was an Honorable

Mention All-State selection, and earned Second Team OIA honors at linebacker, as he was credited with 76 tackles, 15.0

sacks and intercepted two passes. He rushed for 152 yards on 33 carries and scored four rushing TDs. Hala'api'api also

caught five passes for 53 yards. As a team captain his junior season, he was part of a team that finished the season as

the Division II State Runnerup with a 12-2 record. Hala'api'api was a three-sport athlete at Kaimuki High, lettering each

year of high school in football, basketball and track and field. He played for head football coach Clint Onigama.

Born Nov. 25, 1994, he is the son of Fele and Siaosi Hala'api'api. He has three brothers and one sister. Other

schools that recruited Hala'api'api included: Colorado, Oregon State, San Diego State and Washington State.

(continued)University of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Six

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Sam Hardy DL 6-3 275 Fr. West Hills, Calif. (Chaminade College Prep)

Sam Hardy was a First Team All-Mission League selection at Chaminade College Prep as a senior. He helped lead the

Eagles to the Semifinals of the 2011 CIF-Southern Section Western Division Playoffs before losing to eventual champion

Arroyo Grande by a score of 36-45. Chaminade Prep finished the season with a 10-3 overall record and a 4-1 conference

mark, placing them second in the Mission League. Hardy recorded 69 total tackles on the season, including 7.0 sacks.

He was voted a team captain as a senior. As a junior, Hardy earned All-City honors, while leading Chaminade to an

almost identical season as his senior campaign. The Eagles advanced to the Semifinals of the 2010 CIF-Southern Division

Playoffs, just as they did in 2011, and the Eagles posted a 10-3 record in 2010. He played for head football coach Ed

Croson at Chaminade Prep.

Born March 1, 1994, he is the son of Rosalena Brown and Samuel Hardy. Hardy would like to study communications

and someday become a sports color analyst. He has two older sisters, India and Carknisha. Hardy was also recruited by

BYU, Colorado State and New Mexico State.

Nathan Leddige OL 6-5 282 Fr. Beaverton, Ore. (Southridge)

Pronunciation: LED-uh-gee

Nathan Leddige was named to the 2011 Oregonian Class 6A All-State team as an Honorable Mention selection.

Class 6A is the largest classification in the state of Oregon. Leddige also earned First Team All-Metro honors at

Southridge High School in Beaverton, Ore., as both a junior and senior. He helped lead his team to the Second Round of

the State Playoffs in 2011. Leddige was a two-sport athlete at Southridge High. In addition to football, he lettered three

years in track and field, throwing the shot put and discus. Leddige was an honor student all four years of high school,

and earned Metro League Academic All-Star awards his junior and senior seasons. Leddige played for head football

coach Brad Mastrud.

Born Sept. 1, 1994, he is the son of Linda and Michael Leddige. He has two older brothers, Ben and Luke. His

brother Luke is a member of the track team at Portland State University. Nathan Leddige plans on studying engineering

at Wyoming. Leddige was also recruited by Idaho and Portland State.

D.J. May RB 5-11 190 Fr. Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way)

D.J. May earned First Team Associated Press Class 4A All-State honors as a defensive back his senior season. He

is projected as a running back for Wyoming. Class 4A is the largest classification in the state of Washington. He

was joined on that All-State team by his high school teammate, defensive lineman Uso Olive, who is also joining the

Wyoming Football team as a member of the 2012 recruiting class. May was named a First Team All-South Puget Sound

League (SPSL) South Division running back and Second Team defensive back. He was named the SPSL Co-Offensive Back

of the Year. He earned All-Area honors from The Tacoma News Tribune. May rushed for 1,320 yards on 139 attempts,

scored 18 rushing touchdowns, one receiving TD and returned two interceptions for touchdowns. He also caught 13

passes for 140 yards. He was elected a team captain as a senior and helped lead Federal Way High to an 11-1 record in

2011 and the Second Round of the State Playoffs. As a junior he earned First Team SPSL All-Conference as a running

back, and was named to the Federal Way Mirror All-City Team. He rushed for 1,310 yards as a junior, had 1,867 allpurpose yards and scored 14 touchdowns. An outstanding track and field athlete, May placed 10th in the state as a

junior in the long jump, fourth in the 4x400 meter relay and eighth in the 4x100 meter relay. As a freshman, he was a

Junior Olympic National Qualifier in the long jump and placed 10th in the state in the triple jump. He played for head

football coach John Meagher.

Born Oct. 17, 1993, he is the son of Melissa Glatt and Lanell Jackson. His step father is Andy Glatt. He has six

brothers -- Christian, Devon, Diego, Jaden and Dylan. He was also recruited by Idaho.

Dylan Muscat DB 6-0 175 Fr. Santa Monica, Calif. (Santa Monica)

Dylan Muscat was named First Team All-CIF and First Team All-Ocean League as a senior at Santa Monica High

School in Santa Monica, Calif. He helped lead his high school team to an 11-2 record, the Ocean League Championship

and the Semifinals of the CIF Playoffs his senior year. Muscat was a three-year starter in high school, and was voted a

team captain as a senior. He earned First Team All-Conference honors his sophomore, junior and senior seasons as a

defensive back. An accomplished baseball player, Muscat was twice named his high school's Offensive MVP in baseball.

He played for head football coach Travis Clark.

Born Dec. 21, 1993, he is the son of Valerie Goniche and Todd Muscat. He has one younger sister, Madeline.

Muscat was also recruited by Fresno State, Harvard, Idaho, Penn and Yale.

(continued)University of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Seven

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Eric Nzeocha WR 6-1 200 Fr. Neusitz, Germany (FOS Ansbach)

Pronunciation: en-ZAH-chuh (Rhymes with GOTCHA)

Eric Nzeocha is a 6-1, 200-pound freshman wide receiver originally from Neusitz, Germany. He is the brother of

current Wyoming Cowboy linebacker/safety Mark Nzeocha. Eric Nzeocha played for the Franken Knights Youth Team,

a club team in Neusitz, Germany. He also was selected to play on the Junior National Team by the Bavarian Football

Association. This past year, Nzeocha was part of a German Junior National Team that placed fourth in the U19 European

Championship in Spain. Nzeocha had one more year of eligibility available to him to play for the Franken Youth Team,

but he chose to bypass his final year of youth football to sign with Wyoming. He enrolled at Wyoming in January of

2012, and will take part in 2012 spring drills.

Born April 1, 1993, he is the son of Antonie Petersen and Chris Nzeocha. He has three older brothers, Steve, Paul

and Mark.

Uso Olive DL 6-1 305 Fr. Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way)

Uso Olive was named to the 2011 Associated Press Class 4A First Team All-State Team. Class 4A is the largest

classification in the state of Washington. He was joined on that All-State team by his high school teammate, D.J. May,

who is also joining the Wyoming Football team as a member of the 2012 recruiting class. Olive was ranked as the No.

12 best recruit in the state of Washington by ESPN in 2011. Superprep Magazine ranked him as the No. 20 top recruit

in the state of Washington. Olive also earned First Team All-State honors from the Tacoma News Tribune as a senior.

He was named as the South Puget Sound League (SPSL) South Division Defensive Lineman of the Year. He was elected

a team captain as a senior and helped lead Federal Way High to an 11-1 record in 2011 and the Second Round of the

State Playoffs. Olive made 79 tackles, 9.0 sacks and 12.0 tackles for loss his senior season. His junior season, Olive was

credited with 48 tackles, 5.0 sacks and 8.0 tackles for loss. Olive recorded 59 tackles, 10.0 sacks and 10.0 tackles for loss

as a sophomore. He played for head football coach John Meagher.

Born March 16, 1994, he is the son of AnnaMaria Olive. Olive was also recruited by Arizona State, Idaho and

Washington State.

Chase Roullier OL 6-4 290 Fr. Savage, Minn. (Burnsville)

Pronunciation: ROO-lee-ay

Chase Roullier earned First Team Associated Press All-State honors as an offensive lineman his senior season, and

was named Honorable Mention All-State as a defensive lineman. He was ranked by ESPN as the No. 15 recruit at all

positions in the state of Minnesota in 2011. Roullier was also honored by the Minnesota Football Coaches Association

as an Academic All-State selection. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune named him to its First Team All-Metro team. Roullier

was voted the South Suburban Conference Lineman of the Year. He was one of Top 25 nominees for Minnesota's Mr.

Football award. Roullier started three years at Burnsville High. Burnsville played in Class 5A, the largest classification

in Minnesota. As a defensive lineman, he was credited with 60 tackles, 4.0 sacks and 8.0 tackles for loss as a senior.

He was voted a team captain both his junior and senior seasons. Roullier also is a three-year basketball letterman. He

played for head football coach Tyler Krebs.

Born Aug. 23, 1993, he is the son of DeeAnn and Mark Roullier. He has one older sister, Brienne. He was also

recruited by Akron, Columbia, Minnesota, Princeton, Toledo, Western Michigan and Wisconsin.

Trent Sewell WR 6-2 197 Fr. Bothell, Wash. (Bothell)

Trent Sewell was ranked by Rivals.com as the No. 8 best recruit in the state of Washington in 2011, and the top

ranked wide receiver in the state. ESPN ranked Sewell as the No. 11 recruit out of Washington, and also ranked

Sewell as the state's top receiver in the 2011 recruiting class. SuperPrep Magazine rated Sewell No. 12 in the state of

Washington, and ranked him No. 2 among wide receivers in the state. As a senior, Sewell was a leader on a Bothell

team that had been hit hard by graduation the previous year when 44 seniors graduated. Despite playing on a young

team and facing double coverage almost every game, Sewell caught 35 passes for over 700 yards and 12 touchdowns.

He helped lead the young Bothell High team to an 8-4 record on the season. His junior season, Sewell caught 46 passes

for 1,031 yards and 10 TDs and he earned 2010 All-State honors from Washington Preps/Rivals.com. His Bothell High

team posted a 10-2 overall record and a perfect 5-0 conference mark in 2010, winning the KingCo Crown Division and

advancing to the Quarterfinals of the State Playoffs. Sewell has also lettered in track and field each year of high school.

He played for head football coach Tom Bainter at Bothell High.

Sewell was born Oct. 7, 1993. He was also recruited by California, Idaho, Oregon, Oregon State, UCLA, Virginia and

Washington State.

(continued)University of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Eight

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Jason Thompson QB 6-2 205 Fr. Renton, Wash. (John F. Kennedy)

Jason Thompson comes to Wyoming after an outstanding career at John F. Kennedy Catholic High School in Burien,

Wash. Thompson was recruited as a quarterback by the Cowboys. He was also an outstanding defensive back, earning

First Team Seattle Times All-State honors as a defensive back his senior season. Thompson was an Honorable Mention

Associated Press Class 3A All-State selection. SuperPrep Magazine ranked him as the No. 19 recruit at all positions in

the state of Washington in 2011. Thompson completed 63 of 91 passes (69.2 percent) for over 800 yards passing and

threw 15 touchdown passes his senior year. He also rushed for over 200 yards and scored four rushing TDs, and caught

one TD pass and scored two touchdowns on defense. He earned First Team All-Seamount Conference as a quarterback

and defensive back and was his league's Defensive Player of the Year. A team captain, he led John F. Kennedy High to

a Seamount Conference Championship and the Second Round of the State Playoffs in 2011. As a junior, Thompson also

earned First Team All-Conference honors as a quarterback and safety, while passing for over 600 yards and 11 TDs and

rushing for over 100 yards and five rushing touchdowns. He played for head football coach Bob Bourgette.

Born April 21, 1994, he is the son of Caroline and Einer Thompson. He has one older brother, Everrette, and

one younger brother, Desmoun. His brother Everette just concluded his college football career at the University of

Washington where he started every game on the defensive line for the Huskies in 2010 and 2011. Thompson also

has had three cousins play college football: Matt Asiata, a running back at Utah from 2007-10; Shawn Asiata, a senior

running back at Utah in 2011; and Richard Helepiko, a junior center at Fresno State in 2011. Thompson was also

recruited by Oregon State and Washington.

Tom Thornton QB 6-1 205 Fr. Tempe, Ariz. (Marcos de Niza)

Tom Thornton received First Team All-State Division II recognition from the Arizona Coaches Association his senior

season. He also was named an Honorable Mention All-State Division II honoree by the Arizona Republic as a senior at

Marcos de Niza High. Division II is the second largest classification in Arizona. Thornton threw for 2,544 yards and had

20 touchdown passes, while completing 65 percent of his passes in 2011. He added 812 rushing yards and eight rushing

TDs. As a junior, he threw for 1,934 yards and 23 touchdowns. He was voted a team captain as both a junior and

senior, and led his Marcos de Niza team to back-to-back 9-3 seasons in 2010 and '11, advancing to the Quarterfinals of

the State Playoffs both seasons. He played for head football coach Roy Lopez.

Born on Sept. 30, 1993, he is the son of Gina and Jim Thornton. He has one older brother, Jake. Thornton was also

recruited by Arizona, Brown, Navy and Utah State.

Austin Tixier DL 6-3 250 Fr. Mount Prospect, Ill. (Prospect)

Pronunciation: tuh-SHAY

Austin Tixier earned All-Area and All-Mid-Suburban East Conference honors as a senior in 2011 at Prospect High

School in Mount Prospect, Ill. If that high school sounds familiar to Wyoming Cowboy fans, it is because it is the same

high school as current Cowboy offensive lineman Nick Carlson. A defensive lineman, Tixier was credited with 8.0 sacks,

24 quarterback hurries, five forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries his senior season. He was voted a team captain

as a senior. His Prospect High team placed second in the Mid-Suburban East Conference and earned the school's seventh

consecutive appearance in the Class 7A State Playoffs in 2011, losing in the first round. Class 7A is the second largest in

the state of Illinois. As a junior, his team posted a 9-2 record and advanced to the second round of the state playoffs.

Born May 11, 1994, he is the son of Mary Kay and Joe Tixier. He has an older sister, Ellie. Tixier plans on studying

natural resources in college.

Lucas Wacha LB 6-1 208 Fr. Texarkana, Texas (Pleasant Grove)

Pronunciation: WALK-uh

Lucas Wacha comes to Wyoming from Texarkana, Texas, where he earned First Team All-Northeast Texas and First

Team All-District 15-3A honors as a linebacker. His senior season, he recorded 97 tackles, 4.0 sacks and intercepted one

pass. As a junior, Wacha was selected the District 15-3A Defensive MVP. He also earned All-Northeast Texas as a junior,

and was once again First Team All-District 15-3A. Wacha was credited with 108 tackles and 3.5 sacks his junior season.

His Pleasant Grove team posted a 6-5 record in 2010 and advanced to the First Round of the State Playoffs. Wacha also

started as a sophomore, recording 103 tackles and 3.0 sacks as Pleasant Grove enjoyed a 13-2 season that didn't end

until the Fourth Round of the State Playoffs. An outstanding first baseman in baseball, he was the Offensive MVP of

District 15-3A his junior year, and was a Second Team All-State Class 3A selection. His sophomore season, Pleasant Grove

won the 3A State Championship in baseball, and Wacha was named to the All-Tournament team, as well as to the First

Team All-District team. His older brother, Michael, is a junior pitcher at Texas A&M and earned Third Team All-America

honors from Baseball America as a sophomore in 2011.

Born May 20, 1993, he is the son of Karen and Tom Wacha. In addition to his older brother, Michael, he has

another older brother, Charley, and a younger brother, Brett. He was also recruited by Arkansas and Baylor.

(continued)University of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Nine

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Shaun Wick RB 5-10 190 Fr. Ventura, Calif. (St. Bonaventure)

Shaun Wick was named to the All-CIF Southern Section North Division team at the conclusion of his senior season.

Cal-Hi Sports selected him as a Fourth Team All-State Multi-Purpose performer as both a running back and defensive

back. He also earned First Team All-Ventura County in voting by area coaches and was named First Team All-County

by the Ventura County Star. Wick was voted the Marmonte League Offensive Back of the Year. His senior season,

he rushed for 1,271 yards on 133 carries and scored 15 rushing touchdowns and returned one punt for a TD. He also

caught 22 passes out of the backfield for 183 yards, and was credited with 84 tackles and intercepted two passes as

a defensive back. Wick helped lead St. Bonaventure High to a 10-3 record and the Semifinals of the CIF Playoffs. His

junior season, he carried the ball 131 times for 1,219 yards and 15 rushing TDs. He added six receptions for 82 yards

and caught one touchdown pass, while recording 74 tackles on defense. He earned All-County and All-League honors

his junior season as St. Bonaventure posted an 11-2 record before being stopped in the CIF Semifinals. His sophomore

season, St. Bonaventure went 11-2, advancing to the first of three consecutive Semifinals in the CIF Playoffs. He had

46 carries for 412 yards and scored four rushing touchdowns as a sophomore, while adding 47 tackles on defense. His

freshman season St. Bonaventure won the CIF Division 3 State Championship.

Born June 30, 1993, he is the son of Marbella and Eric Wick. He has one younger brother, Chucky. His father

played football at Santa Barbara City College, and a cousin, Mark McGrath, played at Montana State and later for the

Washington Redskins and Seattle Seahawks. Wick was also recruited by Colorado State, Fresno State, Hawai'i, Nevada,

Oregon State and San Diego State.

Junior-College Signees

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Justin Bernthaler DE 6-2 245 Jr. Stuttgart, Germany (Fullerton CC, Calif.)

Justin Bernthaler was ranked by JCGridiron.Rivals.com as the No. 2 best junior college weakside defensive end

recruit in the nation in 2011. He was also ranked as the No. 58 best California junior college recruit at all positions by

247Sports.com., and SuperPrep Magazine's Jan. 15, 2012, issue ranked him as the No. 69 junior college recruit in the

nation at all positions. Bernthaler was elected a team captain as a sophomore at Fullerton Community College in 2011,

and was part of a defense that ranked 14th out of 71 California junior colleges in total defense, allowing only 299.7

yards per game. The Hornets gave up an average of only 24.2 points per game to rank No. 25 in the state in scoring

defense. He led Fullerton in tackles for loss, making 14.5 for a -56 yards. That tied him for 23rd among all California

Community College players in 2011. Bernthaler was second on the team in sacks, with 8.0 for a -42 yards, tying him for

18th in the state of California. Bernthaler tied for fourth on his Fullerton team in tackles, with 43 total tackles from his

defensive end position. He was credited with 23 solo tackles and 20 assists. He also was credited with two quarterback

hurries, forced two fumbles and recovered one fumble. His two forced fumbles tied him for No. 16 in the state. In

2011, Fullerton posted a 5-5 overall record. Bernthaler's freshman season of 2010, Fullerton posted a 7-4 overall record

and won the Golden Empire Bowl Championship. As a junior, he was credited with 22 total tackles, 5.0 tackles for

loss and 3.0 sacks. An outstanding student, he earned Academic Honors both years at Fullerton CC by achieving over

a 3.00 grade point average as a freshman and sophomore. He played for head coach Tim Byrnes at Fullerton College.

Bernthaler attended Pestalozzischule High School in Stuttgart, Germany.

Born Dec. 1, 1989, he is the son of Iris and Bernie Bernthaler. He has one older brother, Kevin, and Bernthaler also

has a one-year old son, Carter, born May 16, 2010. Bernthaler was also recruited by California, Kansas State, Marshall,

Ole Miss and San Jose State.

(continued) University of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Ten

(Alphabetical, As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Walker Madden OL 6-9 260 Jr. Yucca Valley, Calif. (College of the Desert)

Walker Madden comes to Wyoming from College of the Desert in Palm Desert, Calif. He is rated as the No. 34

best California junior college recruit at all positions by 247Sports.com. Madden earned Second Team All-Central East

Conference honors in 2011 at College of the Desert where he helped lead his team to a No. 21 ranking in the final

California Community College Football Coaches Association Poll. College of the Desert posted a 6-5 record in 2011 and

earned a bid to the Beach Bowl where they lost a one-point game, 16-17, to Ventura College. The Roadrunners were

ranked No. 10 in the final California Community College Southern California Regional Ranking. College of the Desert's

offense in 2011 ranked No. 7 among all California community colleges in scoring offense (39.5 points per game), ranked

No. 14 in total offense (433.1 yards per game), was No. 17 in the state in passing offense (259.8 yards per game) and

ranked No. 26 out of 71 California JCs in rushing offense (173.3 yards per game). Madden played for head coach Dean

Dowty at College of the Desert. He played his high school football at Yucca Valley High School for head football coach

Tim Cannavo.

The son of Debra and Mike Madden, he has one older brother, Connor. His father played football at UNLV, and his

brother is a senior on the 2011-12 basketball team at La Sierra University in Corona, Calif. Madden was also recruited by

Louisiana Tech and North Texas.

Connor Rains OT 6-7 305 Jr. Placerville, Calif. (American River CC, Calif.)

Connor Rains, a 6-7, 305-pound offensive tackle, comes to Wyoming from American River Community College in

Sacramento, Calif. He was ranked as the No. 17 best junior college offensive tackle in the nation by JCGridiron.Rivals.

com in 2011. Rains earned 2011 California Community College All-America honors from the JC Athletic Bureau. He

was also named First Team All-State by the California Community College Football Coaches Association (CCCFCA) as

a sophomore in 2011. Rains was a First Team CCCFCA All-Region 1I selection this past season. A two-year starter, he

earned First Team Mid Empire All-Conference honors at American River CC as a true freshman in 2010.

Rains helped lead American River to a perfect 11-0 season, including a 4-0 conference mark and a Mid-Empire

Conference Championship in 2011. American River defeated Chabot College 41-18 in the Capitol City Bowl played in

Sacramento to conclude the 2011 season. American River concluded the 2011 season with an 18-game winning streak

dating back to the 2010 season.

American River CC ended the 2011 season ranked No. 6 in the nation in the JCGridiron.com "Dirty Thirty" Junior

College rankings, which combines the NJCAA and California Community College football programs in one national poll.

The Beavers were ranked No. 4 in the final California Community College Football Coaches Association Poll, and were

ranked No. 3 in the final 2011 California Community College Northern California Regional Ranking. This past season,

American River ranked second among all California community colleges in scoring offense (48.3 points per game),

ranked No. 4 in total offense (466.4 yards per game), was No. 9 in the state in passing offense (286.9 yards per game)

and ranked No. 19 out of 71 California JCs in rushing offense (179.5 yards per game). Rains played for head coach Jerry

Haflich at American River Community College.

The son of Kris and Randy Rains, Rains played his high school football at Ponderosa High School in Shingle Springs,

Calif. His hometown is Placerville, Calif. He plans on studying sociology. Rains was recruited by Middle Tennessee State

and Utah State coming out of junior college, and was recruited by Nevada and UNLV out of high school.

# # #University of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Eleven

(As of Feb. 1, 2012)

University of Wyoming Cowboys

2012 Football Signings

Broken Down By State

(As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Arizona (1)

Tom Thornton QB 6-1 205 Fr. Tempe, Ariz. (Marcos de Niza)

California (6)

Sam Awrabi DE 6-3 240 Fr. Clovis, Calif. (East)

Sam Hardy DL 6-3 275 Fr. West Hills, Calif. (Chaminade College Prep)

Walker Madden OL 6-9 260 Jr. Yucca Valley, Calif. (College of the Desert, Calif.)

Dylan Muscat DB 6-0 175 Fr. Santa Monica, Calif. (Santa Monica)

Connor Rains# OT 6-7 305 Jr. Placerville, Calif. (American River CC, Calif.)

Shaun Wick RB 5-10 190 Fr. Ventura, Calif. (St. Bonaventure)

Hawai'i (1)

Siaosi Hala'api'api LB 6-2 225 Fr. Honolulu, Hawai'i (Kaimuki)

Illinois (1)

Austin Tixier DL 6-3 250 Fr. Mount Prospect, Ill. (Prospect)

Kansas (1)

Jacob English OL 6-5 280 Fr. Beloit, Kan. (Beloit)

Minnesota (1)

Chase Roullier OL 6-4 290 Fr. Savage, Minn. (Burnsville)

Oregon (1)

Nathan Leddige OL 6-5 282 Fr. Beaverton, Ore. (Southridge)

Texas (3)

Chase Appleby DL 6-0 280 Fr. Frisco, Texas (Centennial)

Nico Brown WR 6-3 200 Fr. Leander, Texas (Leander)

Lucas Wacha LB 6-1 208 Fr. Texarkana, Texas (Pleasant Grove)

Washington (5)

Damian Greene DB 5-9 174 Fr. Sammamish, Wash. (Skyline)

D.J. May RB 5-11 190 Fr. Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way)

Uso Olive DL 6-1 305 Fr. Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way)

Trent Sewell WR 6-2 197 Fr. Bothell, Wash. (Bothell)

Jason Thompson QB 6-2 205 Fr. Renton, Wash. (John F. Kennedy)

Australia (1)

Tim Gleeson* P 6-2 195 Fr. Melbourne, Australia ( Viewbank College Prep)

Germany (2)

Justin Bernthaler DL 6-2 245 Jr. Stuttgart, Germany (Fullerton CC, Calif.)

Eric Nzeocha* WR 6-1 200 Fr. Neusitz, Germany (FOS Ansbach)

*High School signees who enrolled at UW for the 2012 spring semester

#Junior College signees who enrolled at UW for the 2012 spring semesterUniversity of Wyoming

2012 Football Signees

Page Twelve

(As of Feb. 1, 2012)

University of Wyoming Cowboys

2012 Football Signings

Broken Down By Position

(As of Feb. 1, 2012)

Offense (12)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Quarterbacks (2)

Jason Thompson QB 6-2 205 Fr. Renton, Wash. (John F. Kennedy)

Tom Thornton QB 6-1 205 Fr. Tempe, Ariz. (Marcos de Niza)

Running Backs (2)

D.J. May RB 5-11 190 Fr. Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way)

Shaun Wick RB 5-10 190 Fr. Ventura, Calif. (St. Bonaventure)

Wide Receivers (3)

Nico Brown WR 6-3 200 Fr. Leander, Texas (Leander)

Eric Nzeocha* WR 6-1 200 Fr. Neusitz, Germany (FOS Ansbach)

Trent Sewell WR 6-2 197 Fr. Bothell, Wash. (Bothell)

Offensive Linemen (5)

Jacob English OL 6-5 280 Fr. Beloit, Kan. (Beloit)

Nathan Leddige OL 6-5 282 Fr. Beaverton, Ore. (Southridge)

Walker Madden OL 6-9 260 Jr. Yucca Valley, Calif. (College of the Desert, Calif.)

Connor Rains# OT 6-7 305 Jr. Placerville, Calif. (American River CC, Calif.)

Chase Roullier OL 6-4 290 Fr. Savage, Minn. (Burnsville)

Defense (10)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Defensive Line (6)

Chase Appleby DL 6-0 280 Fr. Frisco, Texas (Centennial)

Sam Awrabi DE 6-3 240 Fr. Clovis, Calif. (East)

Justin Bernthaler DL 6-2 245 Jr. Stuttgart, Germany (Fullerton CC, Calif.)

Sam Hardy DL 6-3 275 Fr. West Hills, Calif. (Chaminade College Prep)

Uso Olive DL 6-1 305 Fr. Federal Way, Wash. (Federal Way)

Austin Tixier DL 6-3 250 Fr. Mount Prospect, Ill. (Prospect)

Linebackers (2)

Siaosi Hala'api'api LB 6-2 225 Fr. Honolulu, Hawai'i (Kaimuki)

Lucas Wacha LB 6-1 208 Fr. Texarkana, Texas (Pleasant Grove)

Secondary (2)

Damian Greene DB 5-9 174 Fr. Sammamish, Wash. (Skyline)

Dylan Muscat DB 6-0 175 Fr. Santa Monica, Calif. (Santa Monica)

Special Teams (1)

Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Class Hometown (Last School)

Punter (1)

Tim Gleeson* P 6-2 195 Fr. Melbourne, Australia ( Viewbank College Prep)

*High School signees who enrolled at UW for the 2012 spring semester

#Junior College signees who enrolled at UW for the 2012 spring semester

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