UC Davis Announces 2011 Football Recruiting Class

Feb. 2, 2011

Press Release

DAVIS, Calif. - - UC Davis, coming off its second straight winning season, announced that 16 oustanding student-athletes have signed National Letters of Intent while another has signed an athletics grant-in-aid agreement, comprising a recruiting class that head coach Bob Biggs said brings quality depth to the program.

The recruiting class features nine players on the defensive side of the ball and eight on the offensive side. Defensively, there are three players each on the line, linebacker and in the backfield. Three linemen, two tight ends, two wide receivers and a running back make up the offense's additions.

The new class continues to build a UC Davis program that will be joining the powerful Big Sky Conference beginning in 2012. The Aggies ended the 2010 season in strong fashion, winning their final three games - including victories over rivals Cal Poly and Sacramento State - to finish 6-5 overall. UC Davis was 3-1 in the Great West Conference, finishing in second place.

Below are quotes from Biggs as well as a list and bios on each of the student-athletes.

"Each and every one of these individuals we recruited are players that are going to make contributions very early in their careers. They're proven players at the high school level. In the past sometimes, you know you compromise a little (on athleticism and size) but we didn't compromise. They fit the mold athletically that we know you have to have to play well at this level and they will fit well into the schemes that we're running. From that perspective, I think that it's just a very solid class."

"It was important for us to really isolate the positions to add some depth to the program and I think we did that. We got three outstanding offensive linemen, we got three very good defensive linemen, and I always think that's where you start - is in the trenches. We have an oustanding corner, an outstanding safety, we knew we needed to add depth at linebacker and I think the three linebackers we got are really outstanding players. And we added a couple of wide receivers and another running back. We're as deep at running back and tailback as we've ever been. And because we utilize tight ends more than anybody else we added a couple of tight ends as well. I'm really, really happy with the recruiting class."

"I can honestly say now that at the FCS level, where in the past we had FCS-level quality players but not always throughout the ranks and the depth, we can now have an injury and have a quality guy step up, and more important, we don't have to play guys in the trenches until they can't stand. We can rotate both in our offensive line and defensive line and always have fresh, high-quality players and that's what makes your offense and defense go."

2011 UC Davis Football Recruiting Class
Name Pos. Ht. Wt. Hometown/Schools
Jonathan Bias (LB, 6-3, 220, Wilton, Calif./Pleasant Grove HS)
Walter Earnest III  (DL, 6-1, 235, Fontana, Calif./Colony HS)
Quinn Harris (S, 6-0, 185, Northridge, Calif./Moorpark HS)
Andrew Hunter (DL, 6-2, 267, Sacramento, Calif./Rosemont HS)
T.J. King (WR, 6-1, 195, Oakland, Calif./Bishop O'Dowd HS)
Ryan Lefotu (OL, 6-6, 250, Brea, Calif./Orange Lutheran HS)
Reece Ludwig (LB, 6-1, 235, Laguna Hills, Calif./Golden West College Laguna Hills HS `08)
Mark Martindale (TE, 6-3, 255, Laguna Hills, Calif./Laguna Hills HS)
Tavior Mowry (RB, 5-9, 170, Agoura Hills, Calif./Westlake HS)
Artice Nelson (LB, 6-3, 195, Carmichael, Calif./Del Campo HS)
Atlas Smith (TE, 6-4, 225, Santa Ana, Calif./Segerstrom HS)
Parker Smith (OL, 6-4, 280, Los Altos, Calif./Archbishop Mitty HS)
Phillip Thrappas* (S, 5-10, 192, Morgan Hill, Calif./Foothill College/Valley Christian HS)
Dane Turner (WR, 6-2, 190, Alamo, Calif./Monte Vista HS )
Gary Womack (OL, 6-2, 255, Merced, Calif./Merced HS)
Luke Wood (DL, 6-4, 235, Yorba Linda, Calif./El Dorado HS)
Shamawn Wright DB 5-9 170 Antioch, Calif./Antioch HS) 

* Signed a athletics grant-in-aid agreement... Did not sign an NLI.
Jonathan Bias (LB, 6-3, 220, Wilton, Calif./Pleasant Grove HS)
A three-year letterwinner for Pleasant Grove, Bias led the Eagles in tackles last season with 98, including 39 solo, on his way to earning All-Delta River League first-team honors as well as All-Metro first-team accolades... Bias was also an all-state nominee while helping lead Pleasant Grove to a 13-1 record and the CIF-Sac-Joaquin Section Div. I Championship... Posted three games with double-digit tackles, including a season-high 13 against Monterey Trails in the section title... Also opened the year with 11 stops against Monterey Trails HS and had 10 in the section semifinals against Lodi... Earned all-league first-team honors as a junior, posting 104 tackles including 17 against Florin and 15 versus Vacaville... Recovered three fumbles and had 2.5 sacks as a junior, caught five passes for 112 yards as a senior, and scored two career touchdowns... Helped the Eagles finish 33-8 over his final three years, win two league titles and advance to at least the section finals each time... Is a member of the California Scholastic Federation, is a Scholar-Athlete nominee and is a member of the Sacramento Valley Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame.

Walter Earnest III (DL, 6-1, 235, Fontana, Calif./Kaiser HS)
Earned All-CIF Eastern Division first-team and All-Sunkist League first-team accolades while also receiving All-County second-team honors... Was also nominated for the San Bernardino County All-Star team... Finished 2010 with 80 tackles, including 47 solos and 11.5 sacks... Also blocked a punt for the Titans who advanced to a CIF-Southern Section semifinal and finished 12-1 overall while capturing the Sunkist League championship with a perfect 5-0 mark... Also played at Colony HS in Ontario before transferring after junior season, earning second-team All-Mt. Baldy League honors in 2009... Had 62 tackles and five sacks as a junior... Colony was 10-2, earning berth in section quarterfinals... Two-time member of Student-Athlete Academic Team.

Quinn Harris (S, 6-0, 185, Northridge, Calif./Moorpark HS)
Named All-Marmonte League second team and his team's most valuable defensive back... Was a member of Moorpark team that finished 11-2 in 2010 and earned second place in the Marmonte League with a 6-1 record... Carried the ball 25 times for 133 yards during his junior season... Also a member of the track team, earning All-Marmonte league honors, and was his team's two-time MVP in jumps... Also winner of Scholar-Athlete award.

Andrew Hunter (DL, 6-2, 267, Sacramento, Calif./Rosemont HS)
A two-time All-Metro League first-team honoree who was also All-City honorable mention in 2010... Earned honors as a senior after finishing with 60 tackles, 50 of them solo, while picking up five sacks... Compiled a season-high 11 tackles during the Wolverines' 22-17 win over Del Campo HS in November... Also had nine stops against Florin HS... Hunter recorded at least a half-sack in six different games for Rosemont HS which finished with an 8-4 record, won the Metro League title and advanced to a CIF-Sac-Joaquin Section quarterfinal berth... Picked up his first all-league honor during his junior season, posting 44 tackles, including 35 solo, and a half-sack... Capped his 2009 season with a season-best nine solo tackles against Fairfield HS... Is a member of the National Society of High School Scholars.

T.J. King (WR, 6-1, 195, Oakland, Calif./Bishop O'Dowd HS)
Is a two-time All-Hayward Athletic League honoree after posting a combined 90 catches for 1,843 yards and 20 touchdowns during his junior and senior seasons... Earned first-team accolades as a senior and was a second-team winner as a junior... Named his team's MVP and received second-team accolades as All-East Bay, All-NorCal, All-North Coast, All-Metro and All-State (medium schools) this past season after 55 catches for 1,143 yards and 15 scores... Compiled six 100-yard receiving games including a season-best 190 yards against St. Ignatius HS when he had a season-high 10 receptions... Also had 100-yard totals against Ygnacio Valley HS (140), Alameda HS (129), Cardinal Newman HS (126), Hayward HS (120) and Castro Valley HS (116)... Scored 4 TD's against Ygnacio Valley and had scores in all but two games... Is the program's all-time leader for receiving yards and touchdowns... Helped lead Bishop O'Dowd HS to a 10-2 record and a section quarterfinal appearance... Has also lettered in basketball and track. 

Ryan Lefotu (OL, 6-6, 250, Brea, Calif./Orange Lutheran HS)
Received All-Trinity League first-team accolades last season while also being named to the All-Orange County third team... Was also named his team's most valuable player... Named a team captain during his senior season... Earned three varsity letters for Orange Lutheran HS which was 10-3 during his sophomore season and advanced to the third round of the section playoffs... Is also a member of the National Honor Society and California Scholastic Federation.

Reece Ludwig (LB, 6-1, 235, Laguna Hills, Calif./Laguna Hills HS `08/Cal Poly/Golden West)
Redshirted at Cal Poly before transferring to Golden West College... Will have two years of eligibility at UC Davis... Played seven games last season at Golden West but finished second with 52 tackles, including 22 solo, while also garnering 7.0 tackles-for-losses, 1.5 sacks, 2 fumble recoveries, two forced fumbles and a pair of pass breakups... Was twice named All-Pacific Coast League first team after finishing with 116 tackles as a junior in 2006 and 94 during his senior year in 2007... Received team MVP honors for defense during his junior campaign then was the offensive most valuable player a year later when he rushed for 855 yards and eight touchdowns... Helped lead Laguna Hills HS to a 9-3 record and sectional semifinal appearance in 2006 and and 8-3 mark and another postseason berth in 2007... Also earned All-PCL honors for the track team, helping him be named the Laguna Hills HS Athlete of the Year in 2008... Received a National Football Hall of Fame Scholar-Athlete Award in 2008... Was also a Special Olympics volunteer in 2007 and 2008.

Mark Martindale (TE, 6-3, 255, Laguna Hills, Calif./Laguna Hills HS)
Named the Seaview League MVP, was an all-league first-team pick and earned All-County second-team honors after catching 18 passes for 317 yards and 4 TD's last season... Was also team MVP for Laguna Hills HS after helping it finish 10-1 overall and advance to the second round of the section playoffs... Was an All-Seaview League first-team selection and All-CIF Southern Section first team during his junior season when he was also named his team's MVP... Laguna Hills HS finished 12-1 during his junior season and captured the section title with an unblemished 13-0 mark his sophomore year in 2008... Also earned a varsity letter in baseball and is currently competing on the basketball team... Is a four-year member of the California Scholastic Federation and has earned distinction on his school's honor roll.

Tavior Mowry (RB, 5-9, 170, Agoura Hills, Calif./Westlake HS)
Three-year letterwinner in football at Westlake HS who finished his career with 3,298 career rushing yards, 43 touchdowns and a 7.1 yards per carry average... Posted six 100-yard rushing games during his senior season on his way to 1,159 yards and 19 touchdowns overall... Highlighted his year with 177 yards and four scores against Knight HS and then followed with 114 yards on just 11 carries against Palos Verdes HS, adding three more touchdowns... Also caught 15 passes for 208 yards and three touchdowns and averaged 29.4 yards on seven kickoff returns... Was named All-Marmonte League first-team in 2010 as Westlake HS finished 12-2 and advanced to the section championship... Posted impressive numbers during is junior season, finishing with 1,353 yards and 12 rushing touchdowns... Ran the ball just 13 times against Hueneme HS but gained 225 yards including ripping a season-best 86-yarder... Added 15 receptions for 173 yards... Westlake HS was a perfect 14-0 in 2009, capturing the section title... Mowry was All-Marmonte League first team, All-Ventura County second team and his team's MVP following the championship season.

Artice Nelson (LB, 6-3, 195, Carmichael, Calif./Del Campo HS)
Was named All-Capitol Valley Conference first team and All-Metro honorable mention after finishing his senior season with 112 tackles and nine interceptions... Had 90 tackles during his junior season with four picks, earning all-league and All-Metro honorable mention accolades as well... Among his interceptions in 2009 was one he returned 57 yards against Bella Vista HS... Helped lead Del Campo HS to a 13-1 record and a CIF-Sac-Joaquin section title as a junior and an 8-3 mark and its second straight Captol Valley League title in 2010.

Atlas Smith (TE, 6-4, 225, Santa Ana, Calif./Segerstrom HS)
Earned Lineman of the Year honors for the Golden West League while also being named All-Golden West League first-team and All-CIF after catching 12 passes for 159 yards and two touchdowns from his tight end position... Had three catches for 33 yards against Magnolia HS, scoring a pair of touchdowns... Had a season-long catch of 32 yards... Finished with 46 tackles on the defensive side of the ball, including nine sacks for 55 yards including a trio of sacks versus Godinez HS... Was also an all-league first-team selection as a junior and was named Most Improved after catching a team-high 15 passes for 279 yards and four touchdowns... Helped highlight his year with three catches for 50 yards and a TD against Ocean View HS... Posted 28 tackles on defense... Is a member of the Black Student Union, is a volunteer with the SBC Pioneers and a National Football Foundation recipient... Carries a 3.7 GPA.

Parker Smith (OL, 6-4, 280, Los Altos, Calif./Archbishop Mitty HS)
Earned numerous distinctions during his senior season, helping highlight the accolades by being named the West Coast Athletic League Offensive Lineman of the Year... Was also a San Jose Mercury News All-Area first-team selection, was All-Metro first team by the San Francisco Chronicle, his team's most valuable defensive lineman and was a team captain... Had 42 tackles, including a sack, during is junior season while picking up nine stops during a 28-14 win over Saint Francis HS in October... Also broke up a pair of passes in 2009... Helped lead Archbishop Mitty to a 10-1 record and WCAL title during his junior season... Is a member of the California Scholarship Federation and National Honor Society, is a four-year member of the Principal's Honor Roll, and winner of the Walter Haniger Student-Athlete Award... Carries a 4.1 GPA.

Phillip Thrappas (S, 5-10, 192, Morgan Hill, Calif./Foothill College/Valley Christian HS `08)
A transfer to UC Davis from Foothill College where he earned a pair of All-NorCal Conference first-team honors in 2009 and 2010... Had 75 tackles this past season, adding a trio of interceptions and nine breakups and was named Foothill's defensive MVP... Posted 61 total tackles and three interceptions as a freshman while also breaking up four passes... Foothill was 17-5 during his two seasons... Was named to the All-West Catholic Athletic League first team and was tabbed the WCAL's Defensive Back of the Year after garnering 88 tackles and four interceptions as a senior... He had double-digit tackles against North Salinas HS... Was named to the All-Mercury News first team... Valley Christian HS posted a 10-3 record in 2008, advancing to the Central Coast Section Championship.

Dane Turner (WR, 6-2, 190, Alamo, Calif./Monte Vista HS)
Earned All-East Bay Athletic League honors as both a junior and senior for Monte Vista HS after finishing 2010 with 48 receptions for 550 yards and five touchdowns, and ending 2009 with 55 catches for 760 yards and 12 scores... He added 10 career interceptions including six as a senior... Was named to the All-North Coast Section team... Received Monte Vista HS's Captains Award and Iron Man Award while being named a finalist for the Peter Villa Award as the outstanding high school player of San Ramon Valley... Also an Outstanding Academic Athlete (3.5 GPA and above)... After his junior season, he was named a Class of 2011 Bay Area Cream of the Crop Prospect... A three-year letterwinner on the track and field team, twice earning a spot in the North Coast Section high jump finals, receiving his team's MVP award as a sophomore and was his squad's Rookie of the Year... Also earned a pair of all-league certificates in track... Three-year Monte Vista HS Leadership winner... His brother, Kale, played for the UC Davis Aggies from 2004-07... His sister, Bree, is an actress who has appeared in numerous films and on television.

Gary Womack (OL, 6-2, 255, Merced, Calif./Merced HS)
Received All-Central California Conference first-team awards in 2009 and 2010 while also earning a pair of All-District certificates including first-team honors a senior... Named a team captain this past season before earning Best Lineman accolades... Selected All-State second-team (for high school juniors) in 2009... Member of Merced HS team that finished 11-2, won a Central California Conference title and advanced to the sectional semifinals during his sophomore season... Is a member of the California Scholastic Federation with a 3.8 GPA, has taught Sunday school, is ASB Director of Athletics and also captured first place in a Rotary Speech Contest.

Luke Wood (DL, 6-4, 235, Yorba Linda, Calif./El Dorado HS)
Posted 43 total tackles, including 19 solo and three sacks, on his way to earning All-Century League despite playing just six games... Picked up 14 of those tackles against Valencia HS, garnering a six-yard sack as well... Also caught four passes for 42 yards on the offensive side of the ball during the season... Earned All-Century League and All-CIF honors as a junior, finishing the year with 36 tackles and four sacks... Also broke up three passes and scored a touchdown on offense where he had four catches for 77 yards... El Dorado HS was 7-4-1 during his junior season and earned a postseason berth in 2010... Played on the offensive line during his sophomore season.

Shamawm Wright (DB, 5-9, 170, Antioch, Calif./Antioch HS)
Was selected to the All-Bay Valley Association League first team after three interceptions and a team-high nine pass breakups during this senior year in 2010... Also earned distinction with recognition on the San Francisco Chronicle All-Metro Team (Contra Costa)... Added 37 tackles including eight against Deer Valley HS... Had an interception, 29 total tackles and two pass breakups while earning All-BVAL second-team honors... He also rushed 20 times for 173 yards as a junior... Is also accomplished on the track, running 10.6 in the 100 meters and 22.04 in the 200 while receiving all-league honors... Is Scholar-Athlete nominee.