Vanderbilt’s commitment list for 2012 has grown to seven with a pledge from defensive end Josh Dawson from Tucker (Ga.) High School.
Vanderbilt beat out several BCS schools to land Dawson, including Georgia, Mississippi State, South Carolina, Notre Dame, Virginia Tech and North Carolina State.
Dawson is Vanderbilt’s second commitment from Tucker High School, joining linebacker Jacob Sealand, and the sixth prospect from the state
of Georgia to commit to the Commodores.
Dawson, who’s ranked the nation’s 30th-best weakside defensive end by Rivals.com, is the latest impressive prospect to give a pledge to first-year Vanderbilt coach James Franklin.
Other prospects to choose Vanderbilt over major BCS schools include Stone Mountain, Ga., linebacker Darreon Herring, who held offers from Arkansas, Clemson, Nebraska, North Carolina and others, and Atlanta defensive end Stephen Weatherly, who picked Vanderbilt over Boston College, Georgia Tech and North Carolina State.
As ESPN.com writer Jamie Newberg pointed out earlier this week, Franklin has brought attention to Vanderbilt with his strong work on the recruiting trail. The Commodores’ 2012 class was ranked No. 24 in the nation by ESPNU even before Dawson gave his commitment this weekend.
It will be tough for Franklin to compile a class that will rank near the top of the SEC in 2012, but it’s clear he’s on pace to have a group that will be respected across the nation.