Valparaiso University head football coach Dale Carlson has announced the 51 members of his 2011 recruiting class which will begin playing for the Crusaders this fall.
“I am very pleased with the quality of student-athlete we have recruited in our class this year,” Carlson said. “We have improved our depth at every position. We have recruited speed and added size in our lines. We have recruited students who can compete in the rigorous classroom setting here at Valparaiso University.”
Forty-eight of the 51 incoming Crusaders will be freshmen in the fall, with a trio of transfers also being added to the roster. Among the recruiting class are 22 offensive players, 21 defensive players, a kicker, a long snapper, and six athletes, whose position at Valpo has yet to be determined.
“Our coaches have worked tirelessly to bring this class together,” Carlson added. “We have 20 different states represented. Our staff put in a lot of miles traveling and many nights on the phone to bring this class in from all over the country.”
Seven of the incoming players hail from Indiana while another five are natives of Illinois.
“Valparaiso University’s reputation as a first-class academic institution was a driving factor for many of these recruits,” Carlson said. “When I was hired as the football coach I knew we could attract talented students who are capable of playing football at a high level to come to Valpo from all over the country.”
The 51 players will arrive in August for preseason conditioning and practice before opening the regular season on Sept. 3 when the Crusaders host Franklin at Brown Field.
“The young men in our class are ready for the challenge that awaits them,” Carlson concluded. “They know we have a lot of work to do to turn the program around. Each one of them has accepted the challenge to work with our upperclassmen to turn Crusader football into a consistent championship contender.”
“Our returning student-athletes will make up the core of the team that will be on the field in the fall,” Carlson added. “I do believe that many of these talented newcomers will earn an opportunity to contribute right away. We are still working on a few more prospects as well and will release those names once we have all the necessary information.”