Missouri State football adds 19 on signing day

The opening day of the spring signing period for NCAA Division I football was a productive one for Missouri State head coach Dave Steckel and his staff, as the Bears have announced the receipt of official commitments from 15 high school seniors and four transfers who have agreed to play football for MSU next fall.

“We’re very excited about this class and the future of Missouri State football,” Steckel stated. “With these additions to our group of returning players, we are looking forward to getting to work right now on preparing for the 2017 season.”

Fans are invited to attend MSU’s Signing Day Party tonight at 5:30 p.m., at the Springfield Brewing Company (305 S. Market). The event will include dinner and drink specials, and Steckel and his staff will review MSU’s 2017 signing class, discuss the Bears’ newest recruits, show highlights and answer questions.

The signing day party is free and open to the public. No advance RSVP is required.

A complete list of today’s commitments is below:

Caleb Albertson (OL, 6-6, 280, Jefferson City, Mo./Helias Catholic HS)
One of three offensive linemen in the class, Albertson comes to Missouri State after a standout prep career at Jefferson City Helias Catholic High School. He was a three-year starter for the Crusaders, earning all-district honors as both an offensive and defensive lineman. Albertson was a part of Helias’s Missouri Class 4 runner-up team in 2013 and its state quarterfinalist squad the following year, before anchoring an offensive line that paved the way to a school single-season team rushing mark this past fall.

Isaiah Allred (WR, 6-3, 200, Van, Texas/Van HS)
Allred completed a banner senior season for Van High School, earning Texas Class 4A All-State honorable mention recognition from the Associated Press after hauling in 67 receptions for over 1,200 yards and 17 touchdowns. He helped lead the Vandals to a district title and a 12-2 overall record while picking up all-district honors for the second-straight year.

Armand Baker (TE, 6-4, 220, Liberty, Mo./Liberty North HS)
Baker was a three-sport standout at Liberty North High School, where he earned All-Suburban Red Conference honors at three different positions as a senior this past fall. Despite playing just two years of high school football, Baker excelled at tight end for the Eagles in 2016, picking up unanimous first-team all-conference recognition to go along with second-team honors as both a punter and linebacker. A versatile athlete, he also competes in wrestling and track and field.

Edd Becton (DT, 6-4, 275, Florissant, Mo./Hazelwood Central HS)
Another dominant two-way athlete, Becton starred on both the offensive and defensive lines for Hazelwood Central High School, earning first-team Missouri Class 6 All-State recognition from both the media and coaches as a senior. A two-time all-conference honoree, Becton helped the Hawks to an 11-1 season and a state quarterfinal appearance in 2016 before blossoming in his final prep season, when he was named the Suburban XII North Conference Lineman of the Year.

Torre Boland (LB, 6-1, 205, St. Louis, Mo./Trinity Catholic HS)
Boland concluded his prep career at Trinity Catholic High School in St. Louis, where he helped lead the Titans to a Missouri Class 2 state runner-up finish this past fall. A first-team all-district and all-state selection at linebacker, Boland logged 80 tackles, as well as over 700 all-purpose yards and 16 touchdowns as a running back for Trinity, which went 13-1 overall in 2016.

Tyler Currie (WR, 6-3, 210, Cordova, Tenn./Saint Benedict at Auburndale HS/Butler CC)
Currie joined the Bears for the start of the spring semester as a junior college transfer from Butler Community College, where he saw action in seven games this past fall. The Cordova, Tenn., native was a two-time Memphis all-metro selection at Saint Benedict at Auburndale High School and helped the Eagles to a five-win improvement in his final prep season. Currie, who also starred on the hardwood in high school, earned Tennessee Division 2-AA All-State laurels as a senior in 2014.

Kevin Ellis (LB, 6-4, 220, Fort Worth, Texas/North Crowley HS)
Ellis was a three-year letterman as a linebacker, tight end and quarterback for North Crowley High School in Fort Worth. He logged 79 total tackles as a senior for the Panthers, picking up honorable mention all-state recognition and a third-team nod for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram’s 2016 All-Area Super Team.

Jordan Frazier (TE, 6-5, 260, Springfield, Mo./Lighthouse Christian Academy/Oklahoma State University)
Frazier was a mid-year enrollee at Missouri State as a transfer from Oklahoma State, where he was a part of a pair of 10-3 Cowboy squads, primarily as a tight end, fullback and special teams contributor. The Springfield native will have two years of eligibility remaining after earning first-team Academic All-Big 12 Conference citations in each of the last two seasons. Frazier starred as a prep standout for Lighthouse Christian, helping the Chargers to the 2013 National Homeschool Football Association national championship. He led Lighthouse in receptions all four years of his career and paced the Chargers in tackles as a senior to earn his second-consecutive NHFA All-America nod.

Connor Haff (OL, 6-4, 285, Owasso, Okla./Owasso HS)
Haff finished off a strong prep career as a two-way standout for Owasso (Okla.) High School with an honorable mention all-state selection as an offensive lineman, as well as a Class 6A East All-Star nod as a defensive lineman from the Oklahoma Coaches Association. He was also tabbed for Vype.com’s Tulsa Top 100 list prior to the 2016 season.

Dalton Hill (QB, 6-2, 180, Lee’s Summit, Mo./Lee’s Summit HS)
Hill wrapped up his four-year career at Lee’s Summit High School with a standout senior season that culminated with a first-team Missouri Class 6 All-State selection. A two-sport standout for the Tigers, Hill passed for 2,320 yards and 23 touchdowns and rushed for 743 yards in 2016, when he was a unanimous choice for the Greater Kansas City Suburban Conference Gold Division Offensive Player of the Year honor and a semifinalist for the Simone Award honoring the top high school player in the Kansas City area. He earned all-conference and all-district honors in 2015 as well, totaling 2,135 yards of total offense while accounting for 24 touchdowns in his first year as a starter.

Peyton Huslig (QB, 6-3, 200, Andover, Kan./Andover Central HS/Garden City CC)
Huslig joined the Bears at the semester break after a notable freshman season at Garden City (Kan.) Community College, which he led to the NJCAA national championship with a perfect 11-0 campaign this past fall. The Andover, Kan., product passed for 1,140 yards and 12 touchdowns while throwing just one interception to earn honorable mention All-KJCAA recognition. He also garnered offensive MVP honors in the NJCAA title game after throwing a pair of touchdown passes and racking up 192 yards through the air, while rushing for 112 yards and another touchdown. As a prep standout at Andover Central High School, he picked all-state recognition in each of his final two seasons, passing for nearly 4,300 yards and 56 touchdowns in his career and leading the Jags to a state runner-up finish as a senior.

Derek Kohler (OL, 6-3, 265, Platte City, Mo./Platte County HS)
Kohler was a three-year starter and four-year letterman on the offensive and defensive lines for Platte County High School, helping the Pirates to back-to-back 8-4 seasons as a junior and senior. A three-time all-conference performer, he earned first-team Missouri Class 4 All-State laurels this past fall and was a Kansas City Star First-Team All-Metro selection, an All-Simone Team honoree and a Bobby Bell Award finalist in 2016 as well. Kohler received a second-team all-state nod, as well as all-district recognition as a junior. He has also competed in the shot put and discus for the Pirates track and field program.

Quinton Lee (DE, 6-4, 245, Lee’s Summit, Mo./Lee’s Summit HS)
Lee averaged 7.1 tackles and 2.0 sacks per game as a senior at Lee’s Summit High School in suburban Kansas City. The Tigers’ team captain earned first-team all-state and all-conference distinction in 2016 while helping his squad to a 7-3 season that included a seven-game win streak and third-place conference finish. He was a three-year starter at Lee’s Summit, primarily serving as a defensive end his senior year and earning the starting outside linebacker job his junior season.

Myron Mason, Jr. (TB, 5-8, 180, Denton, Texas/Guyer HS)
Mason turned in a pair of 1,000-yard rushing seasons for Denton (Texas) Guyer High School, including a strong senior campaign in which he averaged 8.3 yards per carry and scored 11 touchdowns for a 9-3 squad. An all-area performer in each of his final two prep seasons, he was named Guyer’s offensive player of the year by MaxPreps in 2015, when he rushed for 17 scores and 1,060 yards. Mason was also a threat in the Wildcats return game, totaling 326 kick return yards and two touchdowns as a junior.

Anthony Monken (QB, 6-5, 210, Libertyville, Ill./Libertyville HS/Fresno City College)

Monken will join the Bears after two seasons at Fresno City College, where he completed 62-of-124 passes for 763 yards and seven touchdowns in seven games this past fall. He was a two-year letterwinner at Libertyville High School, where he was an all-conference and an all-area selection as a senior. Monken, who began his collegiate career with a redshirt year at Louisiana-Monroe, is the nephew of Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator Todd Monken and the cousin of Army West Point head coach Jeff Monken.

Kenny Nelson (WR, 6-3, 215, Carrollton, Texas/Trinity Christian Academy)
Nelson is a two-sport standout at Trinity Christian Academy in Addison, Texas, where he was a starting receiver and defensive back for the Trojans in 2016. He was part of a TAPPS Division I playoff run for a 6-5 club in 2016, hauling in 74 passes for 1,247 yards and 18 touchdowns. Nelson also started at tight end his sophomore season and was a standout sprinter, specializing in the 200-meter dash.

Zack Sanders (CB, 6-0, 180, Lawrence, Kan./Lawrence Free State HS)
Sanders was a first-team Kansas 6A All-State selection at wide receiver and cornerback as a senior at Lawrence Free State High School. He also earned area player of the year distinction for the Firebirds, while leading his club to a 9-3 season in 2016. He earned all-conference honors at receiver, cornerback and punt returner in 2016 and broke Free State program records for single-game, season and career receptions, yards and interceptions. Sanders helped produce three-straight 6A semifinal appearances for Free State and also competed in baseball and track during his prep career.

Lorenzo Thomas (WR, 6-5, 190, Jasper, Texas/Jasper HS)
Thomas was a Texas Class 4A first-team all-district selection on both sides of the ball as a standout wide receiver and cornerback at Jasper (Texas) High.  He helped lead the Bulldogs to a 10-3 campaign his senior season and also earned academic all-district distinction. He also started and earned all-district honors as a junior. Thomas is also a standout basketball player at Jasper, averaging 17 points and 10 rebounds a game this season and 15 points as a junior with all-district honors in 2015-16.

Titus Wall (LB, 6-0, 205, Plano, Texas/Plano West HS)
Wall joins the Bears on the heels of a standout prep career at Plano West Senior High School, where recorded 110 tackles, nine tackles for loss, three sacks and four forced fumbles as a senior this past fall. The linebacker earned first-team all-district and second-team all-county honors for the Wolves in 2016, after picking up second-team all-district recognition as a junior when he made 88 total stops. Wall also competed in track and field as a sprinter.