Tommies Blog: Caruso Announces 2014 Football Recruiting Class
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Coming off its first two-loss regular season since Glenn Caruso’s first year as coach, the man in charge announced his 2014 recruiting class last week.
Caruso, entering his sixth season with the Tommies in 2014, is looking for his program to bounce back this year after missing the NCAA Division III Playoffs for the first time in four years. St. Thomas came into the 2013 regular season having won three straight MIAC titles with perfect regular season records. The Tommies got all the way to the national title game in 2012 before losing to Mount Union. St. Thomas was ranked in the top 20 for most of 2013 despite losing to rival St. John’s and Bethel.
Caruso is already the all-time wins leader at St. Thomas with a 57-8 record over five seasons. The Tommies are coming off an 8-2 regular season where they were denied an at-large bid to the playoffs.
The 2014 recruiting class features 71 players. That figure includes 40 from Minnesota, 11 from Wisconsin, 12 from Illinois, three from Colorado and one from Connecticut. It’s important to note that the only financial aid these athletes are eligible is through academics as Division III schools cannot offer athletic scholarships.
For those who have followed Minnesota high school football closely, there are some big names on the list. Caruso hit the west metro hard in recruiting and was able to get many of the state’s better players. He’ll have a deep group at running back with Charlie Venable from Eden Prairie, Tanner Bedard from Wayzata, Joe Herbeck from St. Thomas Academy and Nate Weber from Rogers.
One of his top recruits for the year, Rockford’s Brock Deering, played quarterback and running back. He could make an early impact.
On defense, Jack Dummer of Edina stands out as he led the Hornets in tackling last year. Tobias Knight from Washburn will also be looked at on defense after having a solid senior season for the Millers at running back and linebacker.
Other players that could be looked at to make an early impact include Gamiel Hall from Eden Prairie, Luke Melander from Holy Family Catholic and Adam Kraft from Delano. A look at the full 2014 recruiting class is below. The St. Thomas football program will wrap up spring practice in May and resume the season in August before hosting UW-Eau Claire in its season opener on Sept. 6.
St. Thomas Football 2014 Class
Niko Anderson (Lanesboro)
Josiah Bardwell (Northfield)
Matt Beck (Wayzata)
Tanner Bedard (Wayzata)
Isaiah Brower (St. Paul Highland Park)
Braeden Campbell (Wayzata)
Greg Chimel (Mora)
Matt Christenson (Nicollet)
Max Cory (Centennial)
Gavin Dauwalter (Belle Plaine)
Brock Deering (Rockford)
Jack Dummer (Edina)
Eric Dunn (Eden Prairie)
Gabe Ehlers (Rosemount)
Nick Guggemos (Benilde-St. Margaret’s)
Gamiel Hall (Eden Prairie)
Johnny Helter (Eden Prairie)
Joe Herbeck (St. Thomas Academy)
Jackson Hull (Mahtomedi)
Luke Iverson (Lakeville South)
Austin Jochum (Foley)
Connor Johnson (transfer, Drake/Eden Prairie)
Tobias Knight (Washburn)
Adam Kraft (Delano)
Nick Lannier (St. Paul Highland Park)
Damon Longstreet (Delano)
Austin Lorch (Andover)
Jordan Lundell (Cannon Falls)
Luke Melander (Holy Family Catholic)
Aaron Millerbernd (Lester Prairie)
Dane Mosher (St. Thomas Academy)
Loren Muraca (Eastview)
Alex Ogren (Hill-Murray)
Thomas O’Neil (Waseca)
Austin Ostrander (Minnewaska)
Drew Quinn (Prior Lake)
Bryan Tierney (Mound-Westonka)
Charlie Venable (Eden Prairie)
Nate Weber (Rogers)
Nathan Weber (Mayer-Lutheran)
Kysten Zierke (Blue Earth)