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Rutgers' 22-member class on National Signing Day features 6 recruits

The Rutgers football team’s head coach Chris Ash announced the addition of six recruits who, on National Signing Day, decided to play on the Banks. 

The Scarlet Knights’ complete recruiting class now totals 22, including 10 New Jerseyans, two New Yorkers and one player each from Connecticut and Pennsylvania, respectively. 

Aside from the six recruits who committed on Wednesday, three student athletes — redshirt freshman tight end Matt Alaimo, junior wide receiver Monterio Hunt and redshirt freshman quarterback Johnny Langan — have started school at the University this spring semester and are eligible to participate in spring practices.

Alaimo, a Paramus, New Jersey native, did not see any action at UCLA in the last year. A former consensus three-star recruit, the St. Joseph’s Regional product was the No. 13 recruit in the state, according to 247sports.com. In high school, the 6-foot-4-inch tight end totaled 671 yards and 7 touchdowns.

He could provide necessary depth at the tight end position that Rutgers lacks. Just several weeks ago, NJ Advance Media reported that former junior tight end Nakia Griffin-Stewart would be transferring out of the program. Alaimo can provide depth the Knights need as a two-way blocker and receiver.

Hunt played his freshman season at Marshall, where he saw action at special teams and appeared in all 12 games for the Thundering Herd. He could add depth to a Rutgers special teams unit that finished 64th in efficiency last season.

Langan previously spent the 2018 season at Boston College watching two quarterbacks —Anthony Brown and Josh Smith — play all 12 games. Langan was rated New Jersey’s No. 1 dual-threat quarterback, by ESPN Recruiting. At Bergen Catholic, he eclipsed 4,750 passing yards and tallied 69 touchdowns in his high school career.

A Wayne, New Jersey native, Langan was considered a No. 22 recruit in the state by Rivals.com. The 6-foot-5-inch recruit was named the News 12 2017 New Jersey Player of the Year after commanding Bergen Catholic to its first Non-Public, Group 4 championship in 14 years. 

Since nine defensive players graduated, the Knights are in need of new players to challenge opposing teams’ offenses. On National Signing Day, Rutgers added defensive lineman Rayyan Buell and defensive back Darius Gooden. 

As senior defensive linemen Jon Bateky and Kevin Wilkins leave the Banks, Ash will look to improve the unit that ranked in the nation’s top-20 for pass defense. Wilkins made 50 tackles last season and was one of the Knights’ fastest lineman in the trenches. 

Buell played at New York high school Hornell, where he was the No. 5 recruit in the Empire State and the 43rd top defensive lineman, by 247sports.com. 

Gooden played cornerback and wide receiver at Newark West Side, where he was a First Team All-Conference defensive selection during his senior season, last year. He was also on the Rough Riders’ track and field team.

His agility and speed is almost identical to senior defensive back Blessuan Austin, who suffered a knee injury and missed the majority of last season. 

Wide receiver Stanley King is perhaps one of the biggest names Rutgers added to its 2019 signing class and will add speed and size to an offense that was led by junior tailback Raheem Blackshear in reception yards.

King, an Under Armour All-American selection, led the Garden State with 1,413 yards and 15 touchdowns. The 6-foot-5-inch wideout had initially committed to play at Louisville but decided to open up his recruiting again. 

A Camden, New Jersey native, he was ranked the 18th top recruit by the state, according to Rivals.com. King and Woodrow Wilson High School went to the NJSIAA South Group 3 finals. 

King joins junior wide receivers Bo Melton and Everett Wormley and true freshman running back Isaih Pacheco as the lone Knights from South Jersey.

Last season, Rutgers averaged less than 133 receiving yards per game for 124th in the nation. The Knights utilized Melton and Blackshear as receivers in various offensive plays last season, but the addition of King could prompt a speedier receiving lineup.

For updates on the Rutgers football team, follow @SchmiedJake and @TargumSports on Twitter.

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