Rutgers Football Announces 2018 Signing Class
Head football coach Chris Ash welcomes 22-member class to the Scarlet Knights
PISCATAWAY, N.J. (Feb. 7, 2018) – Rutgers head football coach Chris Ash announced the Scarlet Knights’ completed 22-member recruiting class on National Signing Day presented by Nissan. All have signed a National Letter of Intent to continue their academic and athletic careers at Rutgers.
The 2018 recruiting class consists of player from seven different states, Australia and Sweden. Six Scarlet Knights hail from each New York and New Jersey, three from Pennsylvania, two from Maryland, and one each from California, Florida and South Carolina. The following students enrolled in January and will begin spring practice in March – Kessawn Abraham, Jalen Chatman, Malik Dixon, Jonathan Hilliman, Jalen Jordan, Adam Korsak, Eddie Lewis, Raiqwon O’Neal, Isaih Pacheco and Artur Sitkowski.
|Name||Pos.||Ht.||Wt.||Hometown||High School (Previous School)|
|Kessawn Abraham *||DB||5-10||170||Brooklyn, N.Y.||Erasmus Hall|
|Jalen Chatman *||QB||6-1||180||Harbor City, Calif.||Narbonne|
|Malik Dixon *||DB||6-3||215||Tampa, Fla.||Port Charlotte (Eastern Arizona CC)|
|Jonathan Hilliman *||RB||6-0||220||Plainfield, N.J.||St. Peter’s Prep (Boston College)|
|Christian Izien||DB||5-10||180||Brooklyn, N.Y.||Erasmus Hall|
|Deion Jennings||DB||6-1||195||Sicklerville, N.J.||Timber Creek|
|Jalen Jordan *||TE||6-5||210||Philadelphia, Pa.||IMG Academy|
|Robin Jutwreten||DL||6-4||235||Stockholm, Sweden|
|Adam Korsak *||P||6-2||190||Melbourne, Australia||Maribyrnong College|
|Jamree Kromah||DL||6-4||250||Upper Marlboro, Md.||CH Flowers|
|Zihir Lacewell||WR||6-3||200||Staten Island, N.Y.||Tottenville|
|Eddie Lewis *||WR||6-0||185||Middletown, N.J.||Mater Dei (Milford Academy)|
|Raiqwon O’Neal *||OL||6-5||270||Conway, S.C.||Conway|
|Isaih Pacheco *||RB||5-11||190||Vineland, N.J.||Vineland South|
|Jarrett Paul||DB||6-1||195||Paramus, N.J.||Paramus Catholic|
|Daevon Robinson||WR||6-4||215||Medford, N.J.||Shawnee|
|Matt Rosso||OL||6-6||270||Fairless Hills, Pa.||Pennsbury|
|Artur Sitkowski *||QB||6-5||215||Old Bridge, N.J.||IMG Academy|
|Reggie Sutton||OL||6-4||275||Towson, Md.||Calvert Hall College|
|Matt Thomas||DL||6-4||235||Brooklyn, N.Y.||Midwood|
|Paul Woods||WR||6-1||170||Buffalo, N.Y.||Canisius|
|Avery Young||DB||6-1||190||Coatesville, Pa.||Coatesville|
* – Indicates mid-year enrollee
DB · Fr · 5-10 · 170
Brooklyn, N.Y./Erasmus Hall
Prior to Rutgers: Played for head coach Danny Landberg at Erasmus Hall … appeared at defensive back and wide receiver … helped guide the Dutchmen to a 11-1 record as senior … caught three passes for 112 yards and two touchdowns on offense … also carried three times for 22 yards … recorded 27 tackles and two interceptions on defense during the regular season … named All-New York City Second Team on defense by News12 Varsity … competed in back-to-back PSAL City Football Championships at Yankee Stadium in 2016 and 2017 … ranked the No. 17 overall prospect in New York by 247Sports.com … also competed in track and field in sprints and jumps.
QB · Fr · 6-1 · 180
Harbor City, Calif./Narbonne
Prior to Rutgers: Played for head coach Manuel Douglas at Narbonne … played in the American Bowl … completed 176-of-314 passes for 3,133 yards and 29 touchdowns as a senior … carried 51 times for 388 yards and five touchdowns during the regular season … threw for 516 yards and two touchdowns on 24-of-39 passing against No. 7 St. Louis High School … won the Division 1-A CIF State Championship game, overcoming a 21-point deficit to defeat Pittsburg … finished the season with a 12-3 record … selected to play in the 2017 Blue-Grey All-American Bowl … as a junior, completed 233-of-339 passes for 3,926 yards and 52 touchdowns … carried 68 times for 622 yards and six rushing touchdowns … was named to MaxPreps California Large School All-State First Team Offense in 2016 after leading the Gauchos to the Division 1-A CIF State Championship and a 14-1 record … earned All-City Section Player of the Year … named Offensive Player of the Year by the Torrance Daily Breeze.
DB · Jr · 6-3 · 215
Tampa, Fla./Port Charlotte (Eastern Arizona CC)
Prior to Rutgers: Played one season at Eastern Arizona CC in 2017 … spent two seasons at South Florida … was a First Team All-Arizona Community College Athletic Conference selection at EACC … totaled 41 tackles, six interceptions and returned a punt for a touchdown in 12 games for the Monsters … had six tackles against Glendale Community College (11/11) … posted 10 tackles in win over Scottsdale Community College (10/14) … recorded a 13-yard interception return and added five tackles at Arizona Western College (9/23) … in on seven stops against Mesa Community College (9/1) … had two interception and four tackles against Arizona Western College (9/2) … moved from safety to linebacker as a redshirt freshman at South Florida in 2016 … appeared in the Bulls’ season opener and recorded six tackles, a sack, a forced fumble and pass deflection against Towson (Sept. 3) … missed the rest of the 2016 season due to injury … redshirted in 2015. Prior to College: Played scholastically at Port Charlotte … consensus three-star prospect by Rivals, 247Sports and ESPN.com.
RB · 5th-Sr. · 6-0 · 220
Plainfield, N.J./St. Peter’s Prep (Boston College)
Prior to Rutgers: Spent four seasons at Boston College … appeared in 13 games and rushed for 638 yards with five touchdowns in 2017 … helped the Eagles to an appearance in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl (12/27) … played in 12 games, including 11 starts in 2016 … led the Eagles with 542 rushing yards and six rushing touchdowns … recorded a career-high 29 attempts in the Quick Lane Bowl victory over Maryland (12/26), racking up 70 yards and one touchdown … rushed for a team-high 20 attempts for 74 yards in the win over NC State (10/29) … rushed for fifth career 100-yard game with 102 yards on the ground against Georgia Tech (9/3) and set a career-long rush of 73 yards on third-quarter touchdown … appeared in four games before suffering season-ending injury in 2015 … played in all 13, making seven starts … earned All-Atlantic Coast Conference third-team honors from the Atlantic Coast Sports Media Association and the league’s head coaches … named the ECAC Co-Rookie of the Year … broke Boston College’s rookie record for rushing attempts (210), set in 2008 by Montel Harris … tied for ninth in BC record books for single-season rushing touchdowns (13) … tied for second in the ACC for rushing TDs … also ranked third in the conference for rush attempts, tied for fourth with 6.0 points per game and was eighth for rushing yards (860) and rushing yards per game (66.2) … part of a BC rushing unit that ranked 14th in the nation and second in the ACC with 254.7 yards per game … first BC true freshman to record two rushing touchdowns in one game since 2008, notching two in five games – including three in a row – and at least one touchdown in eight games … rushed for a career-high 148 yards on 25 carries, scoring the Eagles’ first TD of the game on a 49-yard run in the first quarter in the New Era Pinstripe Bowl against Penn State (12/27). Prior to College: Played scholastically at St. Peter’s Prep … captured 2013 MaxPreps All-America honors … earned all-State recognition … captured Hudson County Player of the Year honors as a senior; earned All-Hudson County first-team selection … earned 2013 All-Non-Public first-team honors as well as all-county first-team recognition … became the school’s first 2,000-yard rusher; carried 216 times for 2,007 yards and 33 touchdowns as a senior; also caught 12 passes for 148 yards and one touchdown.
DB · Fr · 5-10 · 180
Brooklyn, N.Y./Erasmus Hall
Prior to Rutgers: Played for head coach Danny Landberg at Erasmus Hall … played cornerback and wide receiver for the Dutchmen … helped guide the Dutchmen to a 11-1 record as senior … recorded 65 tackles and five interceptions on defense … had back-to-back punt return touchdowns in games against DeWitt Clinton and Fort Hamilton … competed in PSAL City Football Championships at Yankee Stadium in 2017 … named All-New York City First Team on special teams by News12 Varsity … honorable mention All-Metro in 2017 by News12 Varsity … named wide receiver MVP at the 2017 Future Phenom Showcase … played at Pope John in Sparta, N.J. as a junior … carried 47 times for 287 yards and two touchdowns, while also adding 23 receptions for 216 yards and three TDs as the Lions went 6-4 in 2016 … rated the No. 20 recruit in New York by 247Sports.com … also competed indoor and outdoor track, running sprints and relays.
DB · Fr · 6-1 · 195
Sicklerville, N.J./Timber Creek
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Rob Hinson at Timber Creek … played cornerback and wide receiver … helped the Chargers to a 10-1 record … posted 48 total tackles (25 solo), one interception and a safety on defense … offensively, caught 11 passes for 246 yards and two touchdowns … as a junior, Timber Creek went 12-0 and captured the NJSIAA South Jersey, Group 4 Championship … rated the No. 47 recruit in New Jersey by 247Sports.com … attended the same high school as current Scarlet Knights Naijee Jones and Tyreek Maddox-Williams.
TE · Fr · 6-5 · 210
Philadelphia, Pa./IMG Academy
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Kevin Wright at IMG Academy … caught 10 passes for 75 yards on a team that went 9-0 as a senior … had a pair of touchdowns on five catches for 57 yards in his junior season … team finished 2016 with an 11-0 record … rated a three-star prospect by 247Sports.com … three-star prospect by Rivals.com … competed with fellow 2018 signee Artur Sitkowski at IMG Academy … father, Gerald Jordan, played basketball at Pittsburgh from 1995-97, appearing in 55 career games for the Panthers … has a twin sister, Jala, who will play basketball at West Virginia next season.
DL · Fr. · 6-4 · 235
Prior to Rutgers: A native of Marsta, Sweden … helped Sweden secure the U19 European title … rated the No. 1 player in Sweden’s 2018 class and the world 91st-ranked defensive end … current Rutgers offensive lineman, Sam Vretman, is also from Sweden and both competed on the Arlanda Jets together.
P · Fr · 6-2 · 190
Melbourne, Australia/Maribyrnong College
Prior to Rutgers: Prepped at Maribyrnong College, where he competed in Australian rules football, cricket and golf … a four-time state representative in Australian football and cricket … a state selection in golf during the 2012-13 season … a national representative in cricket from 2013-14 … played midfielder in Australian football … trained with former NFL punter Nathan Chapman and former NFL kicker John Smith at ProKick Australia … studied at Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia.
DL · Fr · 6-4 · 250
Upper Marlboro, Md./CH Flowers
Prior to Rutgers: Played for head coach Dameon Powell at CH Flowers … helped guide the Jaguars to an 11-1 record, including an undefeated regular-season mark, as a senior … recorded 27 sacks, three forced fumbles and an interception as a senior … named First Team All-Met by the Washington Post … selected to compete in the Maryland Crab Bowl All-Star game.
WR · Fr · 6-3 · 200
Staten Island, N.Y./Tottenville
Prior to Rutgers: Played for head coach Brian Neville at Tottenville … led Pirates to an 8-3 record as a senior, including an appearance in the PSAL quarterfinals … recorded 13 receptions for 211 yards and three touchdowns during the regular season … added two interceptions on defense and five punt returns for 113 yards … rated the fourth-overall recruit in New York by Rivals.com and No. 7 by 247Sports.com … attended same high school as current Scarlet Knight Tim Barrow.
WR · Fr · 6-0 · 185
Middletown, N.J./Mater Dei (Milford Academy)
Prior to Rutgers: Played prep season at Milford Academy for head coach Bill Chaplick … helped guide team to a 10-2 overall record … caught 41 passes for 1,072 yards and 15 touchdowns … coached by Dino Mangiero at Mater Dei … helped the Seraphs capture their first NJSIAA section title, taking a lateral on a hook-and-ladder play 45 yards in the final seconds for the game-winning touchdown in the Non Public Group II championship game … finished 2016 with 24 receptions for 547 yards and 15 touchdowns … also contributed 402 kick return yards and a 94-yard punt return for a touchdown as a senior … First Team All-Non-Public, All-Shore Conference, All-Division and Third Team All-State by the Star-Ledger … First Team All-Shore by the Asbury Park Press and All Shore Sports Network … contributed 449 receiving yards and four touchdowns as a junior … competed for Team USA at the 2016 International Federation of American Football (IFAF) Under-19 World Championship in Habrin, China … produced 28 receptions for 387 yards and five touchdowns in four games to help Team USA secure a silver medal … consensus three-star recruit … second best receiver in New Jersey and No. 13 overall recruit in the state by Rivals … third overall pass catcher in the Garden State and No. 12 in the Northeast by Scout …. rated the 24th overall recruit in New Jersey by ESPN … pegged the No. 24 best prospect in the state by 247Sports.com … also played basketball at Mater Dei.
OL · Fr · 6-5 · 270
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Carlton Terry at Conway … helped guide the Tigers to a 10-2 record … member of an offensive line that helped team rush for 2,600 yards, averaging 200 yards per game and 35 total touchdowns on the ground in 2017 … Conway receivers caught 120 passes for 2,125 yards and 18 touchdowns … recorded nine tackles, including one tackle for loss and three sacks on defense … served as team captain as a senior … selected to play in the Offense-Defense All-American Bowl on Dec. 29 … was named 5A Lower State Lineman of the Year … competed in the Shrine Bowl of the Carolinas, pitting the best players from North Carolina and South Carolina in an all-star game … went 8-5 overall as a junior … rated the No. 17 recruit in South Carolina by 247Sports.com.
RB · Fr · 5-11 · 190
Vineland, N.J./Vineland South
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Dan Russo at Vineland South … played quarterback, running back and defensive back for the Fighting Clan … guided his team to a 8-2 overall record as a senior, including back-to-back playoff appearances … served as team captain … rushed 154 times for 1,414 yards and 18 touchdowns … also threw for 598 yards and three touchdowns on 43-of-81 attempts … posted 28 tackles, two interceptions, one punt return touchdown and one safety … two-time Cumberland County Champions and 2017 WJFL Continental Division Champions … two-time WJFL All-Continental Division First Team selection at quarterback … named South Jersey Times All-Area on offense as a senior … First Team All-South Jersey selection by the Courier Post … named Third Team All-State on defense by NJ.com … rushed for 1,107 yards with 15 touchdowns on 120 carries as a junior … was named Daily Journal Boy’s Athlete of the Year as a junior for his efforts on both the football and baseball teams … top-30 running back recruit in the country and rated No. 17 overall in New Jersey by 247Sports.com.
DB · Fr · 6-1 · 195
Paramus, N.J./Paramus Catholic
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Dan Sabella at Paramus Catholic … finished senior season with 23 solo tackles (35 total) and 1.5 tackles-for-loss … received honorable mention All-Metro in 2017 by News12 Varsity … advanced to the semifinals of the Non-Public Group 4 NJSIAA Championship … rated No. 24 overall recruit in New Jersey by Rivals.com … recorded 17 tackles as a junior.
WR · Fr · 6-4 · 215
Prior to Rutgers: Played for head coach Tim Gushue at Shawnee … guided the Renegades to an 8-4 overall record and NJSIAA South Group 4 Championship … played wide receiver and on the defensive line … had 45 catches for 677 yards and seven touchdowns as a senior … also rushed for 136 yards and four touchdowns … had 48 tackles, one sack and one forced fumble … caught three passes for 115 yards and two touchdowns in the state championship game … hauled in 29 passes for 225 yards and one touchdown as a junior … added 25 tackles, three forced fumbles, one sack and one interception on defense … First Team defense All-American Division … WJFL All-American Division First Team selection at wide receiver … Second Team All-South Jersey selection on defense by the Courier Post … Third Team All-State selection on offense by NJ.com … rated the 22nd-best athlete and No. 11 overall recruit in New Jersey by 247Sports.com.
OL · Fr · 6-6 · 270
Fairless Hills, Pa./Pennsbury
Prior to Rutgers: Played for head coach Dan McShane at Pennsbury … helped guide his team to a 10-3 record and third round playoff appearance his senior year … named First Team SOL National All-Conference on offense and second team defense … selected Class 6A All-State on offense by Philly.com … contributed to the Falcons rushing attack of over 1,300 yards and 17 touchdowns, as well as passing for over 1,600 yards and 17 touchdowns … ranked Penn Preps 2018 No. 5 offensive tackle … rated No. 30 recruit in Pennsylvania by 247Sports.com.
QB · Fr · 6-5 · 215
Old Bridge, N.J./IMG Academy
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Kevin Wright at IMG Academy his senior year … played at Old Bridge High School in New Jersey until his junior season … helped IMG Academy to 9-0 record … as a senior in seven games, he completed 45-of-79 passes for 370 yards and two touchdowns … also rushed for two touchdowns … went 6-5 as a junior at Old Bridge, playing for head coach Anthony Lanzafama … completed 107 of 213 passes for 1,190 yards and five touchdowns … added nine touchdowns on the ground, totaling 254 yards rushing … named All-GMC Red Division by NJ.com and Gannett NJ … threw for 1,436 yards and 16 touchdowns as a sophomore … a four-star recruit and rated the nation’s No. 9 pro-style quarterback by ESPN.com.
OL · Fr · 6-4 · 275
Towson, Md./Calvert Hall College
Prior to Rutgers: Played for head coach Donald Davis at Calvert Hall College … led team to an 8-5 record his senior year … named First Team All-Metro on offense by the Baltimore Sun … selected to compete in the Maryland Crab Bowl All-Star game … helped guide team to a 7-5 record as a junior … rated No. 30 overall prospect in Maryland … attended same high school as current Scarlet Knight Tyshon Fogg.
DL · Fr · 6-4 · 235
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Anthony Odita at Midwood … helped Midwood to 7-1 record his senior season … appeared at defensive end and tight end … recorded 47 tackles and nine sacks on defense, and added two receptions for 60 yards and a touchdown on offense … an All-City performer as a junior … rated No. 59 defensive end recruit in the country and No. 13 overall recruit in New York by 247Sports.com.
WR · Fr · 6-1 · 170
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Rich Robbins at Canisius … helped guide the Crusaders to an 8-4 record his senior year … team captured the Monsignor Martin Championship to advance to New York State Catholic High Schools Athletic Association Championship game … caught 43 receptions for 651 yards and eight touchdowns as a senior … posted 23 total tackles (18 solo), four tackles for loss and three interceptions in two seasons on defense … selected First Team All-WNY on offense … two-time First Team All-Catholic team selection at wide receiver … recorded 35 receptions for 684 yards and eight touchdowns as a junior … defeated Cardinal Hayes for the state title in 2016 … rated the No. 12 overall prospect in New York by 247Sports.com.
DB · Fr · 6-1 · 190
Prior to Rutgers: Coached by Matt Ortega at Coatesville … led the Red Raiders to a 13-2 record and the PIAA District I Class 6A Finals as a senior … intercepted a pass and returned it 72 yards for the wining touchdown … caught 31 passes for 482 yards and score eight touchdowns on offense … had five interceptions and four forced fumbles as a senior … intercepted four passes and helped the Red Raiders to 11 wins as a junior … earned first team all-league honors at both wide receiver and defensive back … ranked No. 1 cornerback in PA as a senior by Penn Preps … also played as small forward in varsity basketball rated No. 29 recruit in Pennsylvania by Rivals.com.