Signing Day: Don't hang up too quickly

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Owls' offensive line coach Ronnie Vinklarek on the day he thought he scored a major recruiting coup


"I was at UH working for John Jenkins and I was recruiting ND Kalu. We were coming down the stretch to  to signing day and I get a call from ND.  He tells me that he's coming to Houston. I hung up quick and went to tell the other coaches about it. I was fired up that we had him.  The next day, his high school coach called me and said in my excitement, I didn't hear the whole conversation.  ND was coming to Houston, no doubt, but he was coming here to play for Rice. It's a lot funnier to tell now than it was at the time."

Signing Day 2012: Up to 21

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Tabari McGaskey of Dallas Lincoln and Cody Henesee are in the folder and officially Rice Owls.  

2012 Signing Day: Two more names

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Justin Carter, a safety from Hoover, Alabama and Darik Dillard, a running back from San Antonio are the latest to send in their NLI's.

Carter played in a defensive backfield at Spain Park HS that included three others who will sign NLIs today.

Dillard is no stranger to the sidelines of Rice Stadium, having spent time each year at Owls' practices before the start of school, watching his older brother Jarett.


Owls' cornerback coach Larry Edmondson recalls the danger of using props to make a point.  


"I was at Southern Miss and our head coach, Curley Hallman and I were making an in-home visit. Coach Hallman was making a point about the values he expected in his recruits and he extended his hands to the recruit and his parents and said 'Now, I have three rings on my hands. I have my wedding ring, my class ring, and a national championship ring.  Which one do you think is the most important?' The point he was trying to make was the class ring was the most important because it represented the commitment to receiving his degree.  But the recruit answered that he liked the national championship ring. Coach Hallman kept trying to make his point, but each time he asked, the recruit kept saying how much he liked the championship ring.  He asked coach if he could hold it and as he pulled it off his finger, coach dropped it and it fell in the ventilation vent on the floor.   We spent the next hour of the visit trying to get that ring out of the vent.   We wound up signing the player, but it sure wasn't on the strength of that home visit."

Signing Day 2012: Double the effort

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Owls' cornerback coach Chris Thurmond on the perils of recruiting twins. 


"Years ago, I was recruiting a set of twins and on signing day, we got the signature of one of them right away, but his brother started to waiver.  So we had to wait, and wait, and wait. In the end he signed as well and both of them turned out to be great players. But I guess the one brother was enjoying the who recruiting experience he wanted to extend it as long as he could."

2012 Signing Day: Three more in the fold

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Latest faxes to cross the desk: David Wilganowski, Alex Lyons and Andre Anderson

Signing Day 2012: Billy Lynch signing day memory

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Owls' receivers coach Billy Lynch was at Indiana and in a pitched battle for the signature of Orhian Johnson from St. Petersburg, Florida in 2008. 


"Johnson was a high school quarterback, and we were recruiting him as such. Ohio State was looking at him primarily as a safety, but held open the idea of quarterback if they didn't sign another one. Well, the "other one" was Terrell Pryor, and as you remember, he strung out his decision for another week.  When it came time on signing day, Orhian had take the gamble as to where Pryor would go.  Well, Pryor did go to Ohio State, but Orhian has been their starting safety, so it worked out pretty well for him."

Signing Day 2012: Grant Peterson was in the dark

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In 2011, recruits in parts of Texas had to worry about an arctic blast that knocked out power and wrecking havoc on Signing Day plans.  2011 Owls' signee Grant Peterson remembers it well:

"I remember walking up real early and just being so anxious to sign, but when I got to school it was pitch black since the power was out.  I couldn't even fax over the signed papers. The power would come on and off but I didn't have time to fax the papers.  Eventually was able to get the fax send, but the power was still on and off the rest of the day. I remember when the news stations came to record the whole thing they were filming us in complete darkness. I couldn't see anything but a bright light. We were sitting at the table in front of the whole school in complete darkness."

Signing Day 2012

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Put check marks behind the names of Connor Cella, Reid Mitchell and Tyler Stehling on your 2012 Recruit Checklist.... NLI's are in

Signing Day 2012: Brandon Dawkins note

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Brandon Dawkins uncle, Bert Adams, originally signed with the Owls in 1982, but signed with the California Angels after they selected him in the 27th round of the 1982 June Draft.  Three years later, he returned to Rice and lettered for two years as a linebacker.



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