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Dickinson State football adds 17 Montanans in 2024 signing class

Pete Stanton
Posted at 10:04 AM, Feb 06, 2024

(Editor's note: Dickinson State University news release)

DICKINSON, N.D. — The Dickinson State football staff is excited to announce their first group of the 2024 signing class. The Blue Hawks finished 10-2, won their 9th consecutive conference championship, and advanced to the second round of the national playoffs in 2023. The Blue Hawks return 85 players, including 16 starters, from the 2023 team. The Blue Hawks will begin spring ball in March in preparation for the 2024 season. The Blue Hawks will report to fall camp on August 9th with their first game coming against Rocky Mountain College on August 29th. The full schedule will be released next week.

Head Coach Pete Stanton on the 2024 class:

"We were able to bring in a great group of young men into our program. They are guys who are capable of playing multiple positions and are very good in other sports and the classroom as well. This group was very successful in high school and come from many great programs. Our coaching staff did an incredible job of establishing relationships with the recruits and their families. We are looking forward to getting them on campus in August."

Tug Amundson - OL - 6’6 285

C.M. Russell High School- Great Falls, MT

"Tug is a big, raw offensive lineman with very good potential. As a pass blocker Tug displayed very good feet and a good punch. As a run blocker he was a mauler who does a great job getting to the second level."

Christion Banks - WR - 6’1 185

West Liberty University - White Plains, MD

MEC Commissioner’s Honor Roll Award, 2x PSAC East Champion, 1x PSAC Champion

"Christion comes from West Liberty University which is a D2 program out of West Virginia. He will bring a lot of experience to the WR room with the ability to get on DB’s toes naturally. Christian’s maturity and experience will bring a lot to the program."

Ty Bennick - DT - 6’2 240

Torrington High School - Torrington, WY

2A Football State Champion, 2x 1st Team All-State, 2x 1st Team All-Conference, 1st Team Super 25.

"Ty is a physical and dominant player coming from a state champion program out of Torrington, WY. Ty has the ability to set the line of scrimmage and use his length to make tackles for loss. After a decorated career for the Trailblazers we are excited to be welcoming Ty to our program."

Chase Crockett - TE - 6’3 210

Dawson County High School - Glendive, MT

1st Team All-State Team Captain Academic All-State Montana Shrine Game Selection

"Chase is a tough, physical, multi-sport athlete who will play tight end for the Blue Hawks. Chase is very athletic and has been All Conference on both sides of the ball. He also excelled at multiple positions on offense during his career and has been a contributor on the basketball court and track for the Red Devils."

Ty Dassinger - RB - 6’0 200

Dickinson Trinity High School - Dickinson, ND

ND class A senior athlete of the year, 2x 1st Team All-State, Midco Sports Class A football player of the year finalist

"Ty is a very talented player who was one of the top prospects in the state of North Dakota. Ty is one that was capable of taking over a game with his explosiveness and strength as a running back. Ty was named the Class A North Dakota player of the year in 2023. Ty will play running back for the Blue Hawks."

Hunter Davis - ATH - 6’1 180

Tioga High School - Tioga, ND

2x All-Conference, Senior Captain for football and basketball

"Hunter is a multi-talented athlete that is capable of playing a number of positions on either side of the ball. He has the ability to go up and make a lot of plays catching the ball and does a good job getting yards after the catch. Hunter plays very hard and will be a great addition to the program."

Javin Friesz - WR - 6’1 175

Grant County/Flasher High School - Flasher, ND

2x All-State QB, 1x All-State Basketball, Region 4 Senior Athlete of the year, Valedictorian

"Javin is a very good athlete. He has been All-State for two years in both basketball and football. He was the region player of the year in football in leading Grant County to the playoffs. He has great vision and has the ability to make big plays at any time. He played QB the last two years but will go to wide receiver in college. He is also an honors student."

Brennan Glines - ATH - 5’11 200

Harding County High School - Buffalo, SD

All-State DE, 2x All-Conference, Defensive MVP

"Brennan had an outstanding senior year for Harding County in leading them to another successful season. Brennan is a multi-talented player that is capable of playing a number of positions. He catches the ball well and pursues the ball well on defense."

Quinn Griffith - OLB - 6’0 195

Baker High School - Baker, MT

4x Academic All-State, 3x All-Conference Defense, 1x All-Conference Offense

"Quinn will fit in well at our zeke position on defense. Quinn does a good job of being instinctive and has a good understanding of the game. He does a good job tackling and getting to the football. In addition, he does well in the classroom."

Gage Hallock - ILB - 6’0 185

Scobey High School - Opheim, MT

1st Team All-State RB/LB and Bob Cleverly 8-man All-Star Game Selection

"Gage excelled at both running back and linebacker for the Scobey Spartans. Gage was a punishing runner and an excellent tackler. Gage has a nose for the football, and he will play linebacker for the Blue Hawks."

Carter Henke - RB - 6’0 200

Bismarck High School - Bismarck, ND

1st Team All-State RB, 1st Team All-Conference Punter, National Honors Society

"Carter was a 1st Team All-State RB for the Bismarck High Demons. He has a great competitiveness to him and was a great leader for multiple sports in high school. He also played linebacker and punted and kicked for the Demons. Our staff is excited that Carter is joining the Blue Hawks."

Cordell Holzer -DB - 5’7 155

Bozeman High School - Bozeman, MT

1st Team All-State DB 2nd Team All-State WR Shrine Game Selection

"Cordell is an extremely versatile playmaker who garnered some All-State recognition in all three phases including as a long snapper. He scored 7 TD’s and had 2 int’s helping the Bozeman Hawks to an undefeated State Championship season. Cordell is also an outstanding student."

Brody Jenness - ILB - 6’0 205

Fergus High School - Lewistown, MT

2x 1st Team All-Conference and 2x 1st Team All-State

"Brody is a tough physical football player who excelled on both sides of the ball. Brody played downhill both as a running back and linebacker. As a junior he helped Lewistown to undefeated seasons in both football and basketball. Brody is an excellent tackler who is always around the football. Brody is a three-time academic All-State Selection"

Jordan Jensen - DE - 6’2 230

Fergus High School - Lewistown, MT

2x 1st Team All-State DL, 2x 1st All Conference OT, Montana Shrine Game selection

"Jordan was an outstanding two-way lineman for the Golden Eagles. As a defensive lineman he uses his quickness to make plays in the backfield and run down plays on the perimeter. Jordan helped the Eagles to state titles and undefeated seasons in both football and basketball during his junior year."

Ethyn Jessen - OLB - 6’0 185

Stanley High School - Stanley, ND

2x All-Region

"Ethyn was one of the first signees of the class and is excited to be a Blue Hawk. He shows good athleticism on the defensive edge and is slippery for offensive linemen to get their hands on. He also played a lot of snaps at tailback for the Blue Jays."

Jeremiah Jilek - ILB - 6’1 180

Dickinson Trinity High School - Dickinson, ND

2x All Region, All-State, 4x All-Academic

"Jeremiah really came into his own during the 2023 season and helped lead Trinity to the state championship game. He was very physical as a fullback on offense. On defense he made several big plays for the Titans and was a big part of their success. The best is still yet to come for Jeremiah."

Johnnie McClusky Jr- LB - 5’10- 190

Billings Senior High School - Billings, MT

3x AA All-State, 3x All-Conference, Academic All-State

"Johnnie has already been a great addition to our program having joined us this semester. On the field he brings elite athleticism and a big hit mentality. Johnnie has Blue Hawk blood in him, and we are glad he has joined our program."

Joey McDermott - DB - 5’10 175

Forsyth High School - Forsyth, MT

All-State, All-Conference

"Joey had an outstanding year for Forsyth leading them to the playoffs and being named all -conference and all state. He was a quarterback who made a lot of plays for Forsyth. He also excelled at safety where he will play at Dickinson State."

Rustin Medenwald - DB - 6’1 175

Mandan High School - Mandan, ND

2nd Team All-State, Academic Honor Roll

"Rustin is a long and smooth athlete with the ability to quickly get in and out of transitions and breaks. His speed allows him to run with offensive players vertically and his aggressiveness is exactly what we want in a defensive back. He has an incredible attitude and work ethic and will be an excellent fit in our program."

Wyatt Meier - RB - 5’9 160

Columbus High School - Columbus, MT

4x Academic All-State, 1st Team All-Conference, 1st Team All-State, Team Offensive MVP

"Wyatt is a harder runner with the explosive ability to hit the hole and get to the second level in a hurry. When evaluating Wyatt, it was hard to find plays where he goes down on first contact. He does an excellent job of fighting for the extra yards and has the ability to catch the ball out of the backfield."

Hakoa Montoya - OL - 6’1 340

Soldotna High School - Soldotna, AK

2x 1st Team All-Conference, 2x 1st Team All-State

"A 2023 State Champion, Hakoa is a very powerful human. He was made to move people against their will to where they don’t want to be. He displays excellent quickness for a person his size and plays with a punishing mentality. We can’t wait to get him on campus and start to develop his talent to its full potential."

Cooper O’Connor - WR - 6’2 175

Baker High School - Baker, MT

2nd Team All-Conference WR 1x and DB 2x, basketball All-State 1x, Academic All-Conference 2x

"Cooper is a guy who is capable of playing on either side of the ball. He has great ball skills and hands, understands space as a wide receiver. On the defensive side he tackled well and is very instinctive. We believe he has a very good upside in college."

Pat O’Hara - LB - 5’11 220

Waldorf University- Pensacola, FL

"Pat is an off the ball linebacker that demonstrates the ability to be physical inside the box and the athleticism to run around in space. He plays with a real hard edge and has an eagerness to be great. Pat has already joined us this spring and is fitting in well with our current roster."

Ivan Ostry - WR - 5’11 190

Pasadena Community College - Rosemead, CA

"Ivan is coming to us from Pasadena Community College. Ivan can make something happen on every single play. He has great hands and also is a talented kick returner. He will be a great fit for our program."

Jaren Rafferty - RB - 5’10 190

Hettinger County High School - New England, ND

All-State, All-Conference

"Jaren had a great year for Hettinger County in leading them to an outstanding season. He is a very hard worker who is physical and plays very hard. He was both an all-conference and all-state selection for Hettinger County."

Cash Randle - WR - 6’0 190

Elizabeth High School - Kiowa, CO

2x 1st team All-Conference Offense, Colorado All-State HM, 3x Academic All-Conference

"Cash excelled at multiple positions in his time at Elizabeth High School, he will be joining our program as a wide receiver. Cash possesses great yards after catch ability and has a knack for finding holes in a defense. Cash’s football IQ shines through and we look forward to his future here at Dickinson State."

Toryn Richards - WR - 5’10 170

Glasgow High School - Glasgow, MT

1st Team All-State Athlete and Class B All-Star Game Selection

"Toryn was a very versatile player for the Glasgow Scotties. He played QB, RB, WR, and LB during his time at GHS. Toryn is a team first kid who did whatever was asked of him to help the team. His explosive plays helped the Scotties reach the Class B playoffs."

Caleb Rist - 5’10 195

University of Mary - Burlington, ND

2x All-State, 3x All-Conference, National Honors Society

"Caleb was a great athlete in high school playing both ways for the Des Lacs - Burlington Lakers. He was a guy we recruited out of high school and shows great explosiveness with his cutting ability in the backfield. He will be a great addition to the RB room."

Maddox Roberts - DE - 6’3 205

Billings Central Catholic High School - Billings, MT

7x Academic All-State, 3x All-Conference, 3x All-State

"The word that kept coming up when evaluating Maddox was motor. He plays defense with great energy and effort. Maddox is a winner, coming to us from a very successful high school program at Billings Central and played in a similar scheme as ours. He will be able to plug in here and feel comfortable right away. No questions his best years are ahead of him, and we are glad those years will be spent as a Bluehawk."

Cole Skabo - DB - 5’11 150

Dickinson High School - Dickinson, ND

"Cole is a very hard worker who had an outstanding senior year at Dickinson High. He is an intelligent player who has a great sense of the game and good ball skills and length. He will continue to get better over the years, and we are looking forward to him being in our program. In addition, he is an outstanding student and will also run track for the Blue Hawks."

Kohbe Smith - WR - 6’1 155

Dawson County High School - Glendive, MT

1st Team All-State WR and State Class A 400 M Champion

"Kohbe has outstanding speed and set school records for receptions and yards. He is an excellent athlete who will compete in track as well as football. He is a state 400 M champion and placed 4th in the triple jump."

Connor Stanton - WR - 6’2 175

Billings West High School - Billings, MT

2x Academic All-State, 3x All-Conference, 2x All-State

"Connor is someone who has been on our radar for many years. The growth that he has displayed from season to season has been incredible. His high football IQ allows him to find openings in the defense and he naturally uses his hands to catch the ball. Coming from a successful program at Billings West, Connor understands what it takes to have success on the field. We are looking forward to seeing him continue to grow here at DSU."

Isaac Stoker - DL - 6’3 250

Corvallis High School - Hamilton, MT

3x 1st Team All-State OL/DL 4x All Conference Captain and Montana Shrine Game Selection

"Isaac is an outstanding two-way player who will play DL for the Blue Hawks. He has the ability to use his strength and agility to get to the QB. He is relentless to the football and plays with great emotion. He helped Corvallis get a state trophy for the first time in over 40 seasons."

Ala Tuisaula - OL - 6’1 330

Soldotna High School - Soldotna, AK

1st Team All-Conference, 1st Team All-State, State Qualifier in Shot Put

"A 2023 State Champion, Ala was a key member of the best rushing offense in all of Alaska. Ala plays with excellent leverage and power. He possesses the ability to drive the line of scrimmage and climb to the second level with ease. He is a tremendous teammate, and we can’t wait to get his infectious personality into our locker room."

Martin Waggoner - RB - 5’9 180

Watford City High School - Watford City, ND

"Martin moved to Watford City after starting his high school career in Nevada. We really like the way Martin approaches the game and his passion and energy in which he plays it. He plays hard and plays the right way."

Chace Waters - DL - 6’4 230

Sidney High School - Sidney, MT

Class A All-State, 3x All-Conference, Shrine Game Selection

"Chace is a guy we have recruited and known for a long time. He has great length and ability. You see his athleticism as a three-sport athlete at Sidney where he also plays basketball and is a thrower on the track team. He was an all-state and shrine game selection. He has a great future ahead of him at Dickinson State."

Jordan Zander - OL - 5’11 230

Fargo North High School - Fargo, ND

1st Team All-State Sr. Year

"Jordan is a guy that helped lead his team to their state championship his senior year. He was selected as a 1st team all-state selection his senior year and has a great feel for offensive line play. He has great feet, and he is a hard-working individual. He will be a great fit here at Dickinson State."