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UNLV football recruiting class low in numbers, high in grades

UNLV coach Marcus Arroyo announced a relatively small recruiting class Wednesday, and that was by design.

The increased number of players in the NCAA Transfer Portal, the introduction of the “super senior” and the extended eligibility because of the COVID-19 pandemic caused Arroyo to better balance the December and February signing days rather than emphasize the early period.

UNLV signed 10 players, with half expected to enroll in January, with 10 to 15 more expected to be announced in February.

“This is a whole new world we’re living in,” Arroyo said. “It’s exciting. It’s not the old world of college football and recruiting as many of us grew up with. You’ve got to be adaptable. You’ve got to adjust. You’ve got to be ready for anything.”

247Sports ranked UNLV seventh in the Mountain West in total playing rating points the site assigns, but is No. 1 in average points designated per player.

Among the more notable signings:

■ Quarterback Jayden Maiava, Liberty High School, 6 feet 4 inches and 205 pounds. He passed for 2,027 yards and 24 touchdowns this past season. UNLV had the two more recent Mountain West freshmen of the year, and incoming freshman Cameron Friel became the starting quarterback at midseason. Could Maiava make a similar impact?

“He has that talent, there’s no doubt about it,” Arroyo said. “He’s as talented as I’ve seen in a while with his arm. We’ll find out what he’s like in the classroom when we really get down and grind.”

■ Wide receiver Randy Masters, Yates High in Houston, 6-1, 175. He chose the Rebels over at least 16 other schools, including Auburn, Baylor, Florida, Louisiana State and Oregon. ESPN ranks him the nation’s No. 82 wide receiver.

■ Linebacker Fred Thompkins, City College of San Francisco, 6-0, 235. He is ranked by 247Sports as the country’s 35th best junior college prospect, No. 5 linebacker nationally and second best from California. Thompkins picked the Rebels over Central Florida, Liberty, Memphis and Washington State.

This was the first recruiting class that Arroyo, who has completed two seasons, could bring onto campus and show the Fertitta Football Complex as well as Allegiant Stadium.

Contact reporter Mark Anderson at manderson@reviewjournal.com. Follow @markanderson65 on Twitter.

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