Light on high-profile commitments entering the final recruiting weekend, Tulane worked feverishly to fix that shortcoming.
Whether the Green Wave succeeded will hinge on the decisions of John Curtis safety Hunter Dale and Jesuit tight end Foster Moreau, who remained uncommitted Tuesday night. If they choose the Green Wave on National Signing Day, they will join Miramar (Fla.) offensive lineman Leeward Brown as three huge late pickups for coach Curtis Johnson and his staff.
Brown, a former Miami commitment, picked Tulane after taking an official visit Jan. 30. Moreau, who committed to LSU before finding out he did not have an official offer, and Dale, who received more than a dozen offers from so-called “power five” conference schools, both visited Tulane earlier in January and did not travel anywhere else after then.
That’s usually a good indicator of a recruit’s destination, although Dale remained mum about his plans.
Until Brown’s decision, Tulane had only one three-star commitment, according to Rivals.com: East St. John running back Nigel Anderson. Dale would give the Wave a third. Last year, Tulane had five three-star signees in a class of 23, and it picked up seven in a class of 24 in 2013.
247Sports rates the current group higher, with six players earning three stars.
Aside from Dale and Moreau, the rest of the 2015 class appeared set as Tulane continued its local-heavy approach under Johnson. All but four of the Wave’s 17 firm commitments are from south Louisiana, with McDonogh 35 wide receiver Darius Williams expected to sign Wednesday as well.
More than three-fourths of Tulane’s signees have come from Louisiana since Johnson arrived.
As usual, the Wave supplemented its in-state recruiting with three players from Florida, running its total from the Sunshine State to 11 in the last three years.
This class is not as balanced by position as the larger groups Johnson brought in the past two seasons. Seven of the 18 commitments are projected at defensive back. There are no quarterbacks, linebackers or defensive ends.
If Williams signs, Tulane will have two new wide receivers, partially filling its greatest need. The Wave’s only returning scholarship wideouts are redshirt junior Devon Breaux, who caught seven passes for 55 yards last year, and rising sophomores Teddy Veal, Terren Encalade and Leondre James.
The other receiver in the class is Belle Chasse’s Andrew Hicks, who spent most of his senior season at quarterback.
The breakdown for the rest of the class is three offensive linemen, two running backs, two defensive tackles, one athlete and one kicker.
West Jefferson defensive tackle Louis Wings, who committed to Tulane last summer, will not be part of the class due to academic concerns, a source confirmed.
Wings is rated two stars by Rivals.com and three stars by 247Sports. Tulane replaced him by going out of its normal recruiting area to get West Monroe defensive tackle John Washington in January. 247Sports rates Washington three stars.
Chandler (Ariz.) Hamilton High cornerback Trey Robinson, who took an official visit this past weekend, had not received a scholarship offer from Tulane as of Tuesday, his coach said.
Robinson, the son of Texas running backs coach Tommie Robinson, is 5-feet-8, 149 pounds.
“I guess you’d be taking a little bit of a chance because he’s smaller, but he can cover people,” Hamilton coach Steve Belles said. “That’s what you want a corner to do. That’s what he did for us. But no one’s (any Division I school) has pulled the trigger as far as I know.”
Robinson is from the same high school as Tulane junior defensive tackle Calvin Thomas.
Belles said Robinson had attracted interest but no offer from Utah State and was considering Northern Arizona from the Football Championship Subdivision.