Virginia goes on late-June recruiting surge


Bronco Mendenhall’s first full recruiting class at Virginia stands at 15 members, and more than a third of those players have committed to the Cavaliers in the last three days.

Since Friday, Mendenhall’s staff has secured commitments from six prospects in the 2017 class. Those players include:

  • Harry Crider: An unranked center out of Columbus, Ind., Crider pledged to the Wahoos on Friday. The 6-4, 250-pound center also claimed an FBS offer from Buffalo.

  • Brian Delaney: Like Crider, Delaney is an unranked prospect. However, the Chantilly, Va., native could contribute early for Virginia as a punter. wrote that “he drives the ball as far as anyone in the 2017 class in punting.”
  • Bryson Speas: Speas rounds out UVa’s trio of Friday commitments, adding more future depth to the team’s offensive line. The 6-4, 260-pound O-lineman is ranked the No. 94 offensive guard in his class and hails from Greensboro, N.C.

  • Mandy Alonso: Mike London and his assistants made a splash late in the 2015 cycle by landing linebacker Dominic Sheppard out of Gulliver Prep in Miami. This weekend, Mendenhall and Co. capitalized by locking up Gulliver defensive tackle Mandy Alonso. Alonso is considered the No. 103 player at his position in the rising senior class.

  • Ryan Thaxton: Virginia reeled in its second in-state commitment in as many days on Saturday when Thaxton, who resides in Alexandria, pledged to the Cavaliers. Thaxton is ranked the No. 33 player in the state and claimed offers from Air Force, Army, Tennessee, Vanderbilt and others.

  • Darrius Bratton: Bratton is both a new and old commitment for UVa. A cornerback, he pledged to the Wahoos a year ago but never signed with the program. Instead of playing for Mendenhall this fall, the Roanoke, Va., native is enrolling at in-state Fork Union Military Academy.According to 247Sports, Bratton recommitted to Virginia on Sunday night.* — Recruiting rankings according to the 247Sports composite index