Signing day
5:44 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

Football: Lions sign two from Longview

The Colby Carthel era is less than a month old, but the Texas A&M University-Commerce football program is already making news in East Texas.

East Texas Sports Network's Gabe Brooks discusses how signing day went for Texas A&M University-Commerce with KETR News Director Mark Haslett.

Carthel, the new head football coach, promised to recruit vigorously in the Lions' two backyards - East Texas and the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. Today's national signing day ended with a number of high-profile players committing to the Lions.

Among them are two Longview High School defensive standouts - safety Corey Bartley and lineman Cornelius Williams.

Here's a closer look at today's signees:

Steven Baker
Defensive Back • 5-11 • 180
San Antonio, Texas (MacArthur H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner at San Antonio MacArthur High School … Two-time all-district selection … Named District 26-5A Return Specialist in 2012 … Notched five interceptions as a senior with one touchdown … Had a pair of 90-yard kickoff returns for touchdowns … Also tallied 254 yards receiving with a touchdown as a receiver … Nominated for Texas High School All-Star game … Coached by Ben Cook … Also lettered four times in track and field … National Honor Society member … Academic all-district selection in track and field.

Personal: Born September 23, 1994 … Son of Josh and Helene Vitt … Father played football and baseball at Colorado College … Plans to major in business management.

McKenlee Smith
Offensive Lineman • 6-3 • 330
Whitehouse, Texas (Whitehouse H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner and starter at Whitehouse High School … Key member of the offensive line for the District 16-4A runner-up Wildcats, capturing a bi-district championship over Ennis … First team all-district selection in 2012 … Coached by Randy McFarlin.

Personal: Born March 17, 1995 … Son of Daniel and Robin Smith … Brother Payton is a pitcher on the Tyler Junior College baseball team … Plans to major in education.

Davar Brown
Linebacker • 6-0 • 230
Houston, Texas (Westbury H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Four year letterwinner and three year starter at Westbury High School … Played at defensive tackle, defensive end middle linebacker … Unanimous first team all-district selection in 2012 … Coached by Steven Hill … Also lettered twice in powerlifting and once in track and field, competing in the shotput and discus.

Personal: Born December 29, 1994 … Son of Derrick and Tarsha Brown … Undecided about collegiate major.

Cameron Rogers
Linebacker • 6-1 • 215
San Antonio, Texas (Brandeis H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner and starter at Brandeis High School in San Antonio … Key member of the Broncos' undefeated District 27-5A squad that advanced to the regional finals … Tallied 120 tackles as a senior … Recorded 18 tackles against Smithson Valley in the area finals … First team all-district and all-city selection in 2012 … Coached by John Campbell … Two year letterwinner in soccer as well.

Personal: Born January 24, 1995 … Son of Kevin and Jacqueline Rogers … Brother Cody is a junior defensive end at UT-San Antonio … Wants to pursue a career in coaching.

Cornelius Williams
Defensive Tackle • 5-11 • 290
Longview, Texas (Longview H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner and starter at Longview High School … Helped lead the Lobos to the District 12-5A championship and advance to the regional semifinals … Two-time all-district first team selection (2011 and 2012) … Second team all-district selection in 2010 … Coached by John King.

Personal: Born January 12, 1995 … Son of Melvin and Katrena Colbert … Plans to major in criminal justice.

Bryce Krumvieda
Defensive Lineman • 6-1 • 245
Van, Texas (Van H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letter-winner at Van High School … Helped pace the Vandals to the undefeated District 15-3A championship …Finished his career with 108 tackles including 13 tackles for loss and four sacks … Notched 18 tackles with with a forced fumble and a touchdown return for a touchdown in the bi-district playoffs against Henderson … First team all-district selection in 2012 … Coached by Brady Pennington.

Personal: Born March 14, 1995 in Paradise, Calif. … Son of Kevin and Tanya Krumvieda … Father played collegiate football at Butte College and Oregon Tech … Plans to major in sports management.

Chris Harrison
Wide Receiver • 6-5 • 185
Waco, Texas (Connally H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner and starter at Connally H.S. … Named an all-region and all-district first team selection … Caught 23 passes for nearly 350 yards as a senior … Coached by Mike Rabe … Also was a four year letterwinner in baseball for the Cadets while lettering three times in both basketball and track and field.

Personal: Born April 5, 1995 … Son of Chris Harrison and Cherrell Tanner … Collegiate major is undecided.

Taylor Smith
Linebacker • 6-0 • 185
Dallas, Texas (Kimball H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner at Kimball High School in Dallas … Helped lead the Knights to the bi-district championship in 2012 … Also member of the Kimball District 11-4A championship in 2011 … Recorded a career-best 17 tackles in a victory over Dallas Adamson … Two-time all-district selection (2011 and 2012) … Team captain as a senior … Coached by Carlton Nelson … Also lettered four times in baseball and once in wrestling … National Honor Society member … Ranks in the top 10 percent of his graduating class.

Personal: Born December 5, 1994 … Son of Carey and Teresa Jones-Smith … Cousin Donald Washington played four seasons for the Kansas City Chiefs … Collegiate major is undecided.

Malik Ellis
Offensive/Defensive Lineman • 6-4 • 255
Daingerfield, Texas (Daingerfield H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner at Daingerfield High School … Helped lead the Tigers to the 2012 state championship game, falling to Cameron Yoe in the title game … Member of the 2010 state championship team … Preseason all-state selection in 2012 … First team all-district selection in 2012 … Coached by Aric Sardinea …  Also lettered twice in track in field and once each in both basketball and baseball.

Personal: Born June 2, 1995 … Son of Raymond and LaTonya Ellis … Undecided on collegiate major.

Kelvin Coleman
Offensive Lineman • 6-3 • 290
Dallas, Texas (Skyline H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letter winner and starter at Dallas Skyline High School … Helped lead the Raiders to the District 9-5A championship as Skyline advanced to the regional final, falling to eventual state champion Allen …  Also member of the 2011 Raider state semifinalist team … Skyline finished the season ranked 12th in the state of Texas … Two-time all-district selection … Coached by Reginald Samples.

Personal: Born October 16, 1994 … Son of Cedric and Angelia Maxwell … Plans to major in sports medicine.

Roderic Wiltz
Defensive End • 6-1 • 225
Houston, Texas (Madison H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner at Madison High School in Houston … All-district selection … Named defensive team captain … Coached by Pat Reinicke … Also lettered four times in powerlifting … Set school records in both the squat and deadlift … National Honor Society member … National Technical Honor Society member.

Personal: Born July 17, 1995 … Son of Roderic Sr. and Verlecia Wiltz … Father played football at North Texas … Plans to major in accounting.

Traven Johnson
Defensive Back • 6-1 • 175
Tyler, Texas (John Tyler H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Four year letterwinner and two year starter at John Tyler High School … Helped lead the Lions to the District 16-4A district title and Region II championship, falling to eventual champion Denton Guyer in the state semifinals … Also a member of the 2011 state semifinal and 2010 regional final teams … Tallied 49 tackles, including 29 solo, with 8 pass breakups and three interceptions as a senior … Coached by Ricklan Holmes … Member of the 2012 Red Bull 7-on-7 Game Breakers national championship team.

Personal: Born December 7, 1994 … Son of Annie Johnson … Collegiate major is undecided.

DeQuante Woods
Running Back • 5-11 • 185
Tyler, Texas (John Tyler H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner and starter for John Tyler High School, playing both wide receiver and linebacker … Helped lead the Lions to the District 16-4A district title and Region II championship, falling to eventual champion Denton Guyer in the state semifinals … All-district selection … Coached by Ricklan Holmes … Member of the 2012 Red Bull 7-on-7 Game Breakers national championship team … Also was a four year letterwinner in track and field, competing in the sprints.

Personal: Born March 2, 1994 … Son of Pamela Woods … Collegiate major is undecided.

Kieston Carter
Linebacker • 5-11 • 200
Mexia, Texas (Mexia H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner at Mexia High School … Helped led the Black Cats to the district championship in 2010 and a runner-up finish in 2011 … Two-time team captain … First team all-district selection in 2011 … Second team all-district selection in 2012 … 2012 Mexia Black Cat Shield of Honor recipient … 2011 Tommy Flatt Award recipient … Coached by Lemonte Chambers … Three-time first team Academic All-District selection.

Personal: Born October 25, 1994 … Son of the late Darrell Carter and Regina Bedford … Plans to major in kinesiology.

Trevon Cook
Defensive Lineman • 6-2 • 255
La Grange, Texas (La Grange H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner and two year starter at La Grange High School … Member of 2012 District 26-3A championship team … Team captain as a senior … First team all-district selection in 2012 … Second team all-district selection in 2011 … Coached by Matt Kates … Also lettered three years in track and field, competing in the shot put, as well as lettering once in basketball.

Personal: Born September 27, 1994 … Son of Ricky and Rose Cook … Plans to major in business.

Darby Smith
Wide Receiver • 5-10 • 180
Ennis, Texas (Ennis H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner and starter at Ennis High School, playing wide receiver, running back and defensive back … Helped lead the Lions to a bi-district playoff appearance … Closed out his prep career with over 600 receiving yards and 500 rushing yards with six touchdowns and a pair of interceptions … All-district honorable mention selection in 2012 … Coached by Jack Alvarez … Also lettered three times in track and field, competing in the 100 meter dash and was a member of the 4x100 and 4x200-meter relay teams.

Personal: Born August 31, 1995 … Son of Demorise Smith and Susan St. Clair … Plans to major in business.

Draze Lawliss
Quarterback • 6-1 • 175
Justin, Texas (Northwest H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner and starter at Northwest High School in Justin ... Quarterbacked the Texans to a District 4-5A runner-up finish and a bi-district playoff appearance ... Passed for 2,985 yards and 25 touchdowns during his career while rushing for 962 yards and eight scores ... Set school record with 440 passing yards and three touchdowns in a victory over Midlothain ... Helped lead Northwest to its two highest win totals in school history ... Named the District 4-5A Offensive MVP ... Two-time all-district selection ... Wise County Player of the Year in 2012 ... Coached by Bill Patterson ... Also earned a pair of letters in track and field.

Personal: Born August 13, 1994 ... Son of Ray and Angie Lawliss ... Collegiate major is undecided.

Kevonne Pierce
Offensive Lineman • 6-3 • 295
Dallas, Texas (Wilmer Hutchins H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner at Wilmer Hutchins High School in Dallas … Started for two seasons on the offensive line for the Eagles … All-district selection in 2011 and 2012 … District 11-3A Fighting Hear Award recipient in 2012 … Named Most Outstanding Academic football player … Coached by Elzie Barnett … Also lettered in track and field, competing in the shot put and discus.

Personal: Born May 23, 1995 … Son of Keith Pierce … Collegiate major is undecided.

Nakia Brown
Defensive Back/Kick Returner • 5-10 • 180
Longview, Texas (Longview H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner and two year starter at Longview High School … Helped lead the Lobos to the District 12-5A championship and advance to the regional semifinals … Finished his career with 133 tackles, six interceptions, 40 pass breakups and eight touchdowns … First team all-district selection in 2012 … Second team all-district selection in 2011 … Named honorable mention all-district in 2010 … All-East Texas punt return specialist … Coached by John King … Also lettered one year in track and field.

Personal: Born June 5, 1995 … Son of Burnett Lacy and Yolanda English … Collegiate major undecided.

Matt Griffin
Offensive Lineman • 6-3 • 290
Denton, Texas (Ryan H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Four year letterwinner and three year starter on the offensive line for Billy Ryan High School in Denton ... Helped lead the Raiders to the state championship game in 2010 as a sophomore ... Member of the 2012 District 5-5A runner-up and bi-district championship team ... Three-time all-district selection (2010-2012) ... Two-time all-area selection (2011-2012) ... All-state honorable mention selection in 2012 ... Notched a personal-best 12 pancakes in a win over Amarillo Palo Duro in 2011 ... Coached by Joey Florence ... Academic all-state selection in 2011 and 2012.

Personal: Born January 30, 1995 ... Son of Stephen and Lea Ann Griffin ... Plans to major in business management.

Broderick Thomas
Running Back/Linebacker • 6-2 • 170
West Columbia, Texas (Columbia H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Four year letterwinner at Columbia High School … Helped lead the Roughnecks to a District 24-3A runner-up showing and a bi-district championship in 2012 … Notched a career-best 12 tackles with four forced fumbles in a victory over Brazosport … First team all-district selection as both a running back and linebacker in 2012 … All-state and all-county selection … Team captain and team MVP as a senior … Coached by Randy Lynch … Also lettered four times in basketball and twice in track and field.

Personal: Born December 18, 1993 … Son of Rodney Thompson and Dana Thomas … Undecided on collegiate major.

Trey Porter
Wide Receiver • 5-10 • 170
Garland, Texas (South Garland H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner at South Garland High School, playing quarterback, wide receiver and cornerback … Helped lead the Colonels to the bi-district championship in 2012 … Tallied 153 rushing yards and 212 passing yards with four total touchdowns in the area finals against Plano West … Second team all-district selection in 2012 … Two-time honorable mention all-district selection (2010 and 2011) … Two-time team captain … Coached by Mark Cox … Also lettered twice in track and field, competing on the 4x100 and 4x200-meter relay teams and the triple jump … Member of the three-time 4x100-meter relay district championship team … Also lettered once in powerlifting.

Personal: Born February 6, 1995 … Son of Ricky Porter and Debra Mitchell … Undecided on collegiate major.

Luke Walters
Quarterback • 6-2 • 215
Pleasanton, Texas (Pleasanton H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Four year letterwinner at Pleasanton High School … Quarterbacked the Eagles to a District 28-3A runner-up showing and a bi-district playoff appearance … School record holder in passing yards, attempts, completions, completion percentage and touchdowns … Threw for a career-best 430 yards and five touchdowns in the bi-district playoff game against Navarro … First team all-area and all-district selection in 2012 … Second team all-district selection in 2011 … Two-time team captain … Named team MVP in 2011 … Army All-American Player of the Week honoree … Coached by Tab Dumont … Also lettered once in basketball.

Personal: Born December 2, 1994 … Son of Keith and Laura Walters … Father played linebacker at Baylor … Interested in studying education and history.

Richard Whitaker
Running Back • 5-10 • 180
Denton, Texas (Guyer H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner and starter at Denton Guyer High School … Helped lead the Wildcats to the undefeated District 5-4A title and 2012 state championship, finishing the year 15-2 … Guyer finished the year ranked eighth in the state of Texas … Rushed for over 1,300 yards in his prep career … First team all-district in 2012 … District Newcomer of the Year in 2011 … Coached by John Walsh … Also lettered twice in track and field.

Personal: Born September 24 … Son of Kimberly Whitaker … Plans to major in social science.

Robert Jackson
Defensive Back • 5-11 • 185
Angleton, Texas (Angleton H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner at Angleton High School … Helped lead the Wildcats to the District 23-4A championship, advancing to the regional semifinals … Finished his prep career with 86 total tackles … Team captain in 2012 … Coached by Ryan Roark … Lettered one year in track and field, running the 100 meter dash, the 4x100 and 4x200-meter relays.

Personal: Born August 31, 1995 … Son of Ryan and Stacy Jackson … Undecided on collegiate major.

Cameron Martin
Wide Receiver/Returner • 5-9 • 170
Keller, Texas (Keller H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner at Keller High School … Caught 50 passes for 579 yards and four touchdowns as a senior, racking up over 700 all-purpose yards with eight touchdowns … Racked up 650 receiving yards with six touchdowns as a sophomore in 2010 … First team all-district selection in 2012 … Named to Texas All-State Team as a sophomore (2010) … Coached by Carl Stralow.

Personal: Born February 16, 1995 in Jacksonville, Fla. … Son of Kelvin Martin and Lynn Andrews … Father was one of the top receivers in Boston College history before playing 11 years in the NFL with the Dallas Cowboys, Seattle Seahawks and Philadelphia Eagles … Collegiate major is undecided.

Cole Odette
Defensive Lineman • 6-0 • 215
Coppell, Texas (Coppell H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner and starter on the defensive line at Coppell High School, playing both defensive end and linebacker ... Helped lead the Cowboys to an undefeated District 5-5A championship and an area final playoff appearance ... Coppell finished the season ranked 10th in the state of Texas ... First team all-district selection in 2012 ... Honorable mention all-district selection in 2011 ... Coached by Joe McBride ... Also lettered once in wrestling as a sophomore.

Personal: Born December 19, 1994 ... Son of Jason and Vicki Odette ... Plans to major in business.

Nathan Crouch
Wide Receiver • 6-3 • 175
Colleyville, Texas (Heritage H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner at Colleyville Heritage High School ... Helped lead the Panthers to a District 6-5A runner-up and the area championship ... Finished his career with 53 catches for over 1,000 yards and 13 touchdowns ... Personal-best was a seven-catch, 198-yard performance with a pair of touchdowns against L.D. Bell ... First team all-district selection in 2012 ... Coached by Mike Fuller ... Also lettered twice in track and field, running the sprints ... Member of the 4x100 and 4x200-meter relay teams which qualified for regionals in 2012.

Personal: Born September 13, 1994 ... Son of David and Lisa Crouch ... Father played football at Harding ... Interested in pursuing a degree in business.

Richard Cooper
Running Back • 5-9 • 185
Angleton, Texas (Angleton H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner and starter for Angleton High School … Helped lead the Wildcats to the District 23-4A championship in both 2011 and 2012, advancing to the regional semifinals as a senior … Rushed for over 2,700 yards during his prep career … As a senior, set single-game school records, rushing for 253 yards and five touchdowns on 20 carries against Tomball … Two-time first team all-district selection (2011 and 2012) … Coached by Ryan Roark … Also lettered one season in basketball.

Personal: Born March 13, 1995 … Son of Carla Cooper … Collegiate major is undecided.

Rawlston Decoteau
Offensive Lineman • 6-0 • 260
Angleton, Texas (Angleton H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner at Angleton High School ... Helped lead the Wildcats to the District 23-4A championship in both 2011 and 2012, advancing to the regional semifinals as a senior ... First team all-district and all-county as well as an all-state selection in 2012 ... Second team all-district and all-county and honorable mention all-state selection in 2011 ... Team captain in 2012 ... Coached by Ryan Roark ... Also lettered once in powerlifting and once in track and field, competing in the shot put and discus ... National Honor Society member ... Honorable mention academic all-state selection in 2012.

Personal: Born November 23, 1994 ... Son of Rawlston and Marion Decoteau ... Plans to major in nursing or biology.

Brian Pullen
Offensive Lineman • 6-0 • 285
China Spring, Texas (China Spring H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner at center and nose guard at China Springs High School … Helped lead the Cougars to a bi-district playoff appearance in 2012 after a district championship in 2011 … First team all-district selection in 2012 … Second team All-Super CenTex selection in 2012 … Coached by Mark Bell … Also lettered four years in powerlifting, setting school records in the bench, squat, deadlift and incline … Also was a four year letterwinner in track and field, competing in the discus and shot put.

Personal: Born May 25, 1995 … Son of Shariana Monroe … Wants to pursue a career in software engineering and computer science.

Corey Bartley
Defensive Back • 5-7 • 155
Longview, Texas (Longview H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner at Longview High School … Helped lead the Lobos to the District 12-5A championship and advance to the regional semifinals … Finished his career with 138 tackles including seven interceptions, 21 pass breakups and six blocked kicks … All-State selection in 2012 … All-East Texas Defensive MVP in 2012 … Defensive Newcomer of the Year in 2011 … Notched 20 tackles and a pair of blocked kicks in a game against North Little Rock … Coached by John King … Member of A&B Honor Roll.

Personal: Born May 7, 1995 in Riverside, Calif. … Son of Corey Bartley Sr. and Rebecca Bagby … Plans to major in business.

Justinn Spady
Wide Receiver • 5-10 • 165
Longview, Texas (Longview H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Two year letterwinner and starter at Longview High School ... Helped lead the Lobos to the District 12-5A championship and advance to the regional semifinals ... Secont team all-district selection in 2012 ... Caught a team-high 30 passes for 450 yards and a pair of touchdowns ... Member of the 7-on-7 state championship runner-up team in 2012 ... Coached by John King.

Personal: Born August 13, 1995 ... Son of Herbert and Shandra Spady ... Undecided on collegiate major.

Cooper Abercrombie
Center/Deep Snapper • 5-11 • 270
Houston, Texas (Cypress Falls H.S.)

Prior to A&M-Commerce: Three year letterwinner and two year starter for Cypress Falls High School … Helped lead the Eagles to a district championship in 2012 … Recorded nine pancakes in bi-district playoff game against Alief Elsik … First team all-district selection as a senior following honorable mention honors as a junior … Named the 2012 Best Blocker Award winner … Coached by Kirk Eaton … Also lettered in golf as a senior.

Personal: Born August 25, 1994 … Son of William and Jeanna Abercrombie … Plans to major in kinesiology.